Hidden Danger in Your North Carolina Home Renovation: Asbestos and Mesothelioma Risks

If you plan to renovate your home in North Carolina, you may encounter many unexpected challenges during your project that you may not know how to address on your own. It’s possible to encounter materials containing asbestos, and you must be careful to either have these materials removed correctly or take careful steps to prevent damage to them. Asbestos and mesothelioma risks may be more likely than you expect in your home renovation project.

Taking steps to prevent exposure to asbestos and mesothelioma risks is crucial, especially if you plan on doing your renovation work yourself. Never attempt to remove any material containing asbestos on your own. If any asbestos material is found in your home, you will need to have it professionally removed.

How Has Asbestos Been Used in Home Construction?

Years ago, asbestos was one of the most widely used materials for insulating and fireproofing all types of structures, including residential homes. It’s possible to encounter pipe coverings, insulating tape, vinyl floor coverings, joint compounds, and wall finishing materials, all made with asbestos. It’s more likely to encounter asbestos-containing materials in older homes, and there are many homes throughout the state that were built using asbestos.

It’s important to remember that the presence of asbestos itself may not be inherently dangerous. If you encounter any materials that were made using asbestos that are still intact, there may not be any danger from them as long as they remain intact. The danger of asbestos appears when the materials are removed incorrectly, damaged, or if they deteriorate, releasing asbestos fibers into the air. When these fibers are inhaled, those affected can experience severe health outcomes.

The most common applications of asbestos in home construction are insulation and fireproofing. If you are planning a home renovation project in North Carolina, it is worth arranging an inspection to check for the presence of asbestos before having any work done. If your project involves any amount of demolition, it is vital that those doing the work take the proper precautions to avoid disturbing any asbestos if possible or have it removed safely if necessary.

Legal Options for Asbestos Exposure

Any amount of asbestos exposure can potentially lead to a mesothelioma diagnosis or a number of other adverse medical conditions. It’s possible for someone to be exposed and not display any noticeable symptoms for many years. If you are diagnosed with any type of asbestos-related medical condition, you will likely need an experienced attorney’s help to determine how, when, and where you were exposed.

Many companies that formerly produced products made with asbestos have since gone out of business or shifted to entirely different operations, but many such companies have been legally compelled to create mesothelioma injury trusts that compensate those negatively affected by their products. If you determine you have been exposed, your attorney can help you determine whether you have grounds for a claim through such an injury trust.

It is also possible to have grounds for a workers’ compensation claim if you developed an asbestos-related health condition from work or file a personal injury claim against a product manufacturer or other party. Ultimately, you could have multiple options for addressing asbestos exposure, including any that may have occurred while renovating your home in the state.


Q: What Are the Early Signs of Asbestos Exposure?

A: The early signs of asbestos exposure typically involve various respiratory symptoms. Most asbestos exposure occurs through inhalation of asbestos fibers, and the respiratory symptoms this may cause can include painful coughing, shortness of breath, chest pain, frequent lung infections, and various other respiratory complications. These symptoms can often be mistaken for conditions less serious than mesothelioma or asbestosis.

Q: How Many Times Do You Need to Be Exposed to Asbestos to Get Mesothelioma?

A: The more times you are exposed to asbestos, the more likely you are to develop mesothelioma. However, it is possible for a single exposure to cause mesothelioma, but the disease has a very long latency period. It can take 10 to 50 years for the first signs of mesothelioma to become recognizable, and this disease is commonly misdiagnosed as other, less serious respiratory conditions.

Q: Is Mesothelioma Curable?

A: No, mesothelioma is an incurable form of cancer. Additionally, once the symptoms become noticeable, the disease has usually progressed to a critical stage. At this point, the victim’s optimal medical outcome is managing their symptoms and helping them remain as comfortable as possible in the time they have left. Mesothelioma, even when caught as early as possible, is a terminal form of cancer.

Q: How Do You Remove Asbestos From a Home?

A: Removing asbestos from a home will require very careful removal by a team of trained professionals. There are very specific safety protocols that must be followed when removing any type of asbestos-containing material from a residence or other structure. Failure to follow these protocols can lead to asbestos fibers being released inside the structure, where they can continue to pose a serious health risk to everyone in the home.

Q: Do I Need to Hire a Lawyer for Asbestos Exposure?

A: You need to hire a lawyer for asbestos exposure if you intend to pursue legal recourse against any other party that you believe to be responsible for the exposure. Depending on how you contracted your asbestos-related disease, you could have grounds to pursue a workers’ compensation claim, a personal injury claim against an asbestos product manufacturer, or a claim for compensation through a mesothelioma injury trust.

The team at Wallace & Graham, P.A., has successfully represented many past clients in a wide range of asbestos-related civil claims, and we can put this experience to work for you if you or a loved one has been exposed to asbestos. When it comes to asbestos and mesothelioma risks in a home renovation project, it’s vital to seek legal counsel if you believe any other party has exposed you or your family. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help.