Veterans of the United States Marine Corps often struggle with various medical conditions, many of which arise from their years of service in the military. If you are a victim of asbestos exposure in the Marines, and were recently diagnosed with mesothelioma, it is natural to have many pressing legal questions concerning your recovery options. A South Carolina Marine Corps veteran mesothelioma lawyer is the ideal resource in this situation.
The attorneys at Wallace & Graham have extensive professional experience helping members of the military with their mesothelioma claims. Throughout the years of our firm’s operation, we have successfully helped clients in the Carolinas and throughout the southern United States with mesothelioma cases, often exceeding our clients’ expectations in terms of the compensation we can secure on their behalf.
If you or a member of your family is a Marine Corps veteran recently diagnosed with mesothelioma, it is possible that your diagnosis arose due to the conditions you faced at some point during your term of service in the military. Many Marine Corps personnel are housed, stationed, and required to work in various places across the globe, and some older buildings contain severe risks of asbestos exposure.
Our firm can help trace the point of origin of your mesothelioma diagnosis. We can aid you in determining exactly when and where you were exposed and assist you in determining the full extent of your available recovery options. It’s possible that the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) may offer some benefits, but navigating the claim filing process could be challenging. The same applies if you intend to seek compensation from a mesothelioma trust fund in the United States.
If these options only offer limited recovery, and a specific party is liable for your diagnosis, it can form the foundation of a personal injury suit. A successful personal injury claim could enable you to secure compensation that standard benefits programs do not offer, enhancing your recovery tremendously. Ultimately, our goal is to help you recover as much compensation as possible for your diagnosis.
Mesothelioma is an incurable form of lung cancer caused only by exposure to asbestos. This material was widely used for its fireproofing and insulating capabilities in construction efforts across the world during the 1950s, ’60s, and ’70s, but the extreme health hazard that asbestos creates was largely unknown. Over the past several years, many people who were exposed to asbestos decades prior have been diagnosed with mesothelioma.
Asbestos particles are very small, thin, and sharp, and their lightness allows them to linger in the air for days at a time where people can breathe them. Once asbestos particles embed in the respiratory system, they gradually cause cancer to form. Mesothelioma often takes decades to manifest noticeable symptoms, with the average diagnosis time being between 25 and 40 years after exposure. Sometimes, mesothelioma can be diagnosed as early as 10 years after exposure.
One of the most troubling aspects of mesothelioma is that most people with the disease do not know they have it until it has reached a critical level. Symptoms often do not appear until after the cancer has spread throughout the respiratory system, and the average life expectancy after diagnosis is only 18 months.
Mesothelioma is incurable and terminal, and receiving this diagnosis can be incredibly distressing for anyone. By the time symptoms have appeared, the victim can only hope to alleviate their pain during the time they have left, and their symptoms will continue to worsen without extensive medical care.
While mesothelioma cannot be cured, treatments do exist that can alleviate symptoms and preserve a patient’s quality of life following their diagnosis. Some patients are able to live for several years with early detection of their condition and appropriate treatment. Regardless, the news that you have mesothelioma can come as an understandable shock to you and your family.
Marine Corps veterans typically go to the VA for healthcare following their service. Most honorably discharged Marine Corps veterans will have lifetime healthcare through the VA, and while this can dramatically reduce their medical costs over the years, there are limits to what the VA can provide.
Individuals who qualify for disability benefits through the VA are assigned disability ratings from 1 to 100. These ratings indicate the severity of their conditions and the extent of benefits they are eligible to receive. Because mesothelioma is an incurable and terminal illness, most veterans who claim benefits for mesothelioma are assigned disability ratings at the higher end of the range and are likely to qualify for the maximum benefit allotment.
Despite the value of VA benefits for mesothelioma, the amount a claimant can receive may ultimately do little in the face of the extensive damages their condition entails and the extent of financial problems their diagnosis causes for their family. Many asbestos product manufacturers that have gone out of business have created trusts for mesothelioma compensation, and these trusts could be available to some Marine Corps veterans diagnosed with mesothelioma.
If you qualify to file a claim through a mesothelioma trust in the United States, the average payout for these claims is between $300,000 and $400,000. This compensation can be invaluable to you and your family, but it may ultimately amount to just a fraction of your total damages related to your diagnosis. An attorney can make filing your claim much easier, resolve any issues you encounter with this process, and determine if you have alternative avenues of recovery.
While filing a civil suit against the Marine Corps or any other government agency can be very difficult and only yield limited compensation, it is possible to have grounds for a personal injury claim against another party that bears fault for your asbestos exposure. Your Marine Corps veteran mesothelioma lawyer can review your record of service to determine if and when you were exposed to asbestos due to another party’s negligence or misconduct.
If any business or private property owner bears fault for your mesothelioma diagnosis, you have the right to pursue a personal injury claim against them to recover compensation that you cannot obtain through VA benefits or a mesothelioma injury trust. This could be a civilian contractor, property owner, or business with which you were involved during your service. You need an experienced attorney to help you uncover all the compensation you can include in your claim.
Under the state’s personal injury statutes, the plaintiff in a personal injury case has the right to seek compensation for all medical expenses they incur because of the defendant’s actions. Once you have proven fault for your mesothelioma diagnosis, the defendant will be liable for any medical treatment costs you could not recover through the VA or a mesothelioma injury trust.
An individual diagnosed with mesothelioma could incur several types of medical expenses for their condition, and these may all be claimed in their personal injury suit as economic damages. The plaintiff may have the right to claim compensation for:
Your Marine Corps veteran mesothelioma attorney can help identify all medical treatment costs you can include in your claim to ensure you receive maximum compensation for your damages.
One of the most frustrating aspects of a mesothelioma diagnosis is the fact that most people with the disease are diagnosed later in life. Mesothelioma sometimes takes decades to manifest noticeable symptoms, often appearing shortly before or following the victim reaching retirement age. However, it is possible for the condition to appear when the victim still expects to be able to work and earn income for many years.
When an individual is diagnosed with mesothelioma, their symptoms have likely progressed to a critical point and will continue to worsen for the rest of their life. This is likely to leave them unable to work and earn income, and they will not be able to take advantage of their future earning capacity.
Your Marine Corps veteran mesothelioma lawyer can help determine the full extent of lost income and lost future earning potential you can include in your claim. The defendant responsible for your diagnosis is liable for all income you are unable to earn because of your asbestos exposure.
The right attorney on your side can help obtain compensation for your medical expenses and lost income, potentially revealing that you are entitled to claim more compensation than you initially expected. However, your recovery does not end there. State law allows a personal injury plaintiff to claim pain and suffering compensation along with their economic damages.
There is no limit on pain and suffering compensation in most personal injury cases, so the plaintiff may claim as much as they believe to be appropriate to reflect the extent and severity of the harm they suffered. Your Marine Corps veteran mesothelioma lawyer can assist you in determining a fair amount based on the extent of your economic damages and the prognosis from your medical care team.
The purpose of pain and suffering compensation is to compensate a plaintiff for their physical pain and psychological suffering resulting from a defendant’s negligence or misconduct. If you are able to prove that another party is directly responsible for causing your mesothelioma diagnosis, it is possible for you to recover a substantial amount of pain and suffering compensation with a successful personal injury claim.
For most personal injury plaintiffs, pain and suffering compensation accounts for the bulk of their total recoveries. Your attorney is likely to use your total claimed economic damages as a starting point to determine fair pain and suffering compensation to seek from the defendant. It’s likely to recover several times the amount of your economic damages in compensation for your pain and suffering due to the severity of a mesothelioma diagnosis.
It’s natural to have lots of pressing legal questions in the aftermath of your mesothelioma diagnosis. You may face a long series of difficult interactions with the VA and a complex claim filing process through a mesothelioma injury trust. If you have grounds to file a personal injury claim, success with your case can greatly enhance your total recovery, but you will need legal counsel you can trust to guide you through your claim efficiently.
The attorneys at Wallace & Graham have years of professional experience representing mesothelioma claims in the Carolinas and throughout the United States. If you are a Marine Corps veteran, your recovery efforts following your mesothelioma diagnosis are likely to be far more complex than what the average civilian could expect. You need experienced legal representation on your side to maximize your recovery.
You can rely on the team at Wallace & Graham for compassionate support through every step of your case, from filing your claim for VA benefits and seeking compensation through a mesothelioma injury trust to building a comprehensive personal injury claim against whoever is responsible for your asbestos exposure.
Our team excels at resolving complex mesothelioma claims, and we do not charge exorbitant upfront legal fees when our client is already struggling with the financial effects of their diagnosis. When you hire our firm for your mesothelioma claim, we take your case on contingency, so you will only pay a fee if and when we win your case.
Contact Wallace & Graham today to schedule a free consultation with a Marine Corps veteran mesothelioma attorney and learn how we can help with your recovery. We understand the difficulty of living with this diagnosis and can help you receive fair compensation. The sooner you reach out to our firm, the more time we have to build a compelling case for you.