How to Choose a Mesothelioma Lawyer in New York
Choosing a Mesothelioma Lawyer in New York
Asbestos exposure is the most common cause of mesothelioma. Like most states, New York's mesothelioma and asbestos laws were enacted after asbestos was deemed toxic after prolonged periods of exposure. Following the establishment of these laws, persons diagnosed with mesothelioma or relatives of persons who died as a result of the disease may file lawsuits in New York to seek compensation from liable companies.
One of the first steps to take in filing a claim is to hire a mesothelioma lawyer. New York is one of the states with the highest number of asbestos exposure cases. As a result, the state has strict asbestos regulations. Mesothelioma lawyers guide claimants through the required court processes to access compensation for injuries or damages suffered.
What Does a Mesothelioma Lawyer Do?
A mesothelioma lawyer specializes in mesothelioma or other asbestos-related cases. These lawyers usually have extensive knowledge of New York asbestos laws. They employ the knowledge and expertise in helping parties who have suffered injury or damage from asbestos exposure access compensation. Injury and damage, in this case, includes mesothelioma and other asbestos-related diseases like lung cancer and asbestosis. Death from asbestos exposure is also covered under the injury or damage umbrella. Compensation typically covers claimants' hospital costs, funeral costs, travel costs, lost wages, and other losses suffered due to asbestos exposure.
There are different ways to seek compensation for asbestos exposure, including personal injury lawsuits, wrongful death lawsuits, and asbestos trust fund claims. Persons who suffer from mesothelioma or other diseases due to asbestos exposure may file personal injury lawsuits. On the other hand, wrongful death lawsuits are filed by relatives or representatives of persons who died as a result of asbestos exposure. Asbestos trust fund claims apply to bankrupt organizations as it is not possible to file a personal injury or wrongful death claims against bankrupt organizations. Given the knowledge of federal and state asbestos laws and subject matter expertise that lawyers have, mesothelioma lawyers are well equipped to navigate the court system. Mesothelioma lawyers can also help claimants determine the best option for compensation.
Mesothelioma lawyers perform many functions in litigation, including drafting motions and complaints, filing lawsuits, trust fund claims, or workers' compensation claims on clients' behalf. As the court requires, mesothelioma lawyers also help case parties gather evidence like pay stubs, employment records, or medical records to prove that the claimant's illness was caused by asbestos exposure and that the defendant is liable. Other steps necessary to ensure proper documentation and presentation of evidence, such as document review and witness calling, are also within mesothelioma lawyers' purview. A mesothelioma lawyer performs the necessary steps to prepare for a trial and appears in court on the claimant's behalf.
Why Hire a New York Mesothelioma Lawyer?
Although it is possible for individuals filing claims to appear in court as self-represented litigants, it is advisable for persons filing mesothelioma claims to hire lawyers. One of the reasons it is important to hire a mesothelioma lawyer is that mesothelioma may take years to develop, unlike other types of personal injury. It is important to file a claim once the claimant receives a mesothelioma diagnosis, and this requires medical evidence. A mesothelioma lawyer is well-versed in gathering the required scientific and medical evidence to bring a claim before the court.
Mesothelioma lawyers can provide information that would not otherwise be readily available to the claimant about asbestos exposure. A mesothelioma lawyer may be better equipped to investigate the claimant's work history to determine the source or cause of the asbestos exposure. For example, in building medical evidence of asbestos exposure, mesothelioma lawyers may employ industrial hygienists' services, which may be an expensive venture for the claimant. A mesothelioma trial also requires expert medical testimony, and it may be more feasible for lawyers to retain medical experts and obtain certain medical reports.
Because mesothelioma may take years to develop or diagnose, liable companies may have gone bankrupt. In cases where liable parties are bankrupt or where such parties have established bankruptcy trust funds, a lawyer can determine how best to access compensation.
Another reason it may be necessary to hire a mesothelioma lawyer is that due to the effects of the disease, a claimant may find the process of a lawsuit physically tasking.
Generally, mesothelioma lawyers can advise on the right litigation strategy depending on the claimant's particular case details. In litigation, mesothelioma lawyers can answer legal questions on the claimant's behalf and better protect the claimant's interests and rights. Mesothelioma lawyers can also determine whether a defendant's settlement offer or compensation is reasonable or commensurate with the damage caused.
How to Choose a Mesothelioma Lawyer in New York
Determining which mesothelioma lawyer to choose is a crucial part of the process as the choice of lawyer contributes to the successful resolution of a case. The following are some factors to consider when choosing a mesothelioma lawyer in New York:
Track record: experience and track record are the most important factors to consider when choosing a lawyer. Mesothelioma cases can be complex, so it is crucial to choose an experienced lawyer as this would increase the chances of success. Because an experienced lawyer would have handled many mesothelioma cases, the lawyer would be well versed in New York's mesothelioma laws and court processes.
Experienced mesothelioma lawyers and law firms also have more accumulated resources like databases to devote to mesothelioma clients. Using an inexperienced lawyer may mean that a mesothelioma case takes longer than it needs to.
Before choosing a mesothelioma lawyer, it is also important to consider the lawyer or law firm's track record. Persons interested in choosing mesothelioma lawyers must consider success rates and the amount the lawyer has recovered in settlement fees, as these could be success indicators.
Fees: before a mesothelioma case begins, it is crucial to agree with the lawyer about case costs and lawyer fees and how the fees will be charged. Many mesothelioma lawyers offer free consultations at the beginning of a case, and the consultation is a good time to discuss compensation with a lawyer. Prospective case parties must ensure that they are comfortable with the proposed fee percentage and payment schedule.
Disposition: mesothelioma cases claimants are often people diagnosed with the disease and undergoing treatment or people who have lost loved ones to the disease. Because of the emotional toll a mesothelioma case can take, claimants are advised to choose lawyers who will consider the claimants' condition and be as collaborative on the case as necessary.
How Much Do New York Mesothelioma Lawyers Charge?
Most mesothelioma lawyers charge on a contingency basis. This means that mesothelioma lawyers only get paid if they reach a settlement or get the client a desirable outcome. In cases where an attorney charges a contingency fee, the client does not have to pay any amount if the case is not favorably resolved. Charging an hourly rate may be more expensive for the client as there is no telling how long it would take to resolve a mesothelioma case.
Mesothelioma lawyers typically offer free consultations before taking on a case. Potential clients can ask prospective lawyers questions about a case without any obligation. The amount a case party ends up paying depends on the agreement with the lawyer; most lawyers who charge contingency fees take between 33% - 40% of the settlement amount. It should be noted that the lawyer's fee is compensation for the lawyer's time, expertise, and firm resources. The fee does not include case costs such as filing fees, jury fees, deposition transcript fees, motion service fees, medical records charges, medical expert fees, and all other costs that accrue in the course of the mesothelioma case. Depending on the agreement with the client, the lawyer may cover the case expenses if the case is not successfully resolved. However, if the case reaches a favorable settlement, the lawyer deducts the case cost and fees from the payment and pays the client the balance.
Depending on the time it takes to resolve a mesothelioma case, a lawyer may increase fees in the course of the case. This may especially apply in cases that go to trial or where an appeal is necessary. A mesothelioma lawyer may reduce fees for bankrupt claimants at the lawyer's discretion.
How to Find a Mesothelioma Lawyer in New York
Finding a mesothelioma lawyer in New York can be as simple as searching for lawyers on a preferred search engine. There are many third-party websites with lawyer directories, and these sites are typically listed in search engine results. Some websites may allow users to filter search using zip codes, thus making it easy to streamline search and find mesothelioma lawyers in specific localities. Apart from directories, search engines also list law firm websites; persons interested in finding mesothelioma lawyers in New York may visit these websites for information on how best to contact the listed law firms.
Statewide and local bar associations in New York are helpful resources for finding mesothelioma lawyers. These associations have lawyer referral and verification services that may be useful to persons interested in finding mesothelioma services.
Another way to find a mesothelioma lawyer in New York is recommendations and referrals. Individuals who want to find mesothelioma lawyers may ask friends and family for personal advice or recommendations from individual networks. Former mesothelioma case parties may also help provide recommendations or contact details of mesothelioma lawyers. Any interested party may research and contact former case parties for information.