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Do you need an attorney for a mesothelioma claim?

U.S. Navy veterans have joined the list of people who stand a tragically high likelihood of being diagnosed with mesothelioma or another asbestos-related disease. Other victims include those who worked in asbestos manufacturing factories, and factories that produced building materials made from asbestos.

Asbestos once seemed tailor-made for the navy, with its fire-retardant properties—so sailors breathed in asbestos fibers when they ate, drank, washed, worked and slept. Even though a Navy surgeon general warned of the dangers in 1939, asbestos continued to be used regularly for more than 30 years. Even once the military stopped putting asbestos into its new ships, older ships full of asbestos remained in service for decades more, exposing more soldiers to eventual sickness and death.

Because mesothelioma is an insidious disease that develops slowly, many people mistake the symptoms for simple aging. A diagnosis can come decades after the last exposure—and some victims never do find out. Their grieving survivors find out about the mesothelioma only after an autopsy confirms the diagnosis.

Since the connection between mesothelioma and the toxic exposure to asbestos is so clear, it has become somewhat of a hot legal issue throughout the nation. There are numerous ads promising large dollar amounts to anyone who has (or even thinks they may have) a lung disease that could be mesothelioma, and many advertise "no lawsuit needed." So why should you hire an attorney instead?

Because your case is unique, and you can't get adequate compensation for your illness and the toxic exposure you suffered without an attorney. Many mesothelioma cases involve repeated exposure over the decades, long after employers and manufacturers knew that asbestos was dangerous. You don't want to shortchange yourself or your survivors by accepting a sum of money that's far less than what you actually deserve. Additionally, you need to protect your right to file a claim before the statute of limitations runs out.

An attorney can help you evaluate your actual and potential losses, the companies that you can name in your lawsuit (because there are often more than one), and the insurance coverage that's available to cover your claim. It's important to note that Navy veterans should also seek an attorney, because they would direct their lawsuit at the manufacturers and distributors of the asbestos products, not the U.S. military.

Source: PR Newswire, "Mesothelioma Victims Center Warns Diagnosed Navy Veterans About Why a Lawsuit May Be Needed to Get the Best Compensation and Why They Must Hire the Very Best Attoneys," Dec. 05, 2016

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