Asbestos is a very dangerous material that people often handle at work. They may not understand how dangerous it can be until it has made them sick. It took years to prove a connection between asbestos and cancer. Research shows that asbestos can cause mesothelioma, lung cancer and even reproductive cancers. Many employers and individuals don’t treat asbestos with the respect it deserves.
It’s hard to understand the threat asbestos poses because of how long it takes to make someone sick. People can go decades before they have even minor symptoms of asbestos-related cancer. People exposed to asbestos at work may not realize that they are still at risk of illness decades later. After a doctor diagnoses them, they may not understand their legal rights. If they have retired, they may not think they can make a claim against the company that exposed them to asbestos. Does someone still need to work for the same company to pursue compensation for mesothelioma?
Work history, not current employment, determines eligibility
A cancer diagnosis might make people worry about the future. They can expect major medical expenses and lost wages if they’re still working. It is common for those diagnosed with mesothelioma to have already retired or to have taken a new job. It often takes mesothelioma more than two decades to create noticeable symptoms. Those symptoms are often minor at first.
Thankfully, that long delay does not absolve employers of responsibility. Employment records can help prove that someone handled asbestos at work. The company that exposed them will likely be liable for the illness they developed. Even if the company has since gone out of business, workers still have rights. The company may have funded an asbestos bankruptcy trust. The trust can help compensate those sickened due to chemical exposure on the job.
The diagnosis and the work history of a former worker are both important for a worker’s claim. Their current employment will have little impact on their rights. Taking legal action could help a worker obtain better treatment. Their compensation can also allow them to provide support for their loved ones as their condition progresses.