Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard P.C., has recovered over $800 million in personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits for its clients. The firm’s record includes 200 cases with verdicts or settlements of $1 million or more.Consistently recognized among the top Illinois law firms by Chicago Lawyer Magazine, Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard P.C.’s record speaks for itself.
If you’ve developed mesothelioma, asbestosis or another asbestos-related injury, let our experience work for you. We have been successful in pursuing product liability claims, including a $9 million product injury case we settled in 2011.
Mesothelioma involves complex medical issues, and our firm has a lengthy record of success in cases involving medical malpractice. We invite you to review our case results before contacting our Chicago mesothelioma lawyers at Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard P.C., for a free consultation.
How A Mesothelioma Lawsuit Works
A mesothelioma injury lawsuit can be filed as a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit. The former is filed by the individual who has been injured; the latter is filed by the family of the individual who has passed away. In civil court lawsuits for damages, legal responsibility for injuries caused by asbestos exposure is generally determined under product liability law, which holds manufacturers and distributors responsible for failing to provide a well-designed product that is reasonably safe when used as intended.
Product liability lawsuits regarding asbestos exposure can be based on three theories – breach of warranty, negligence or strict liability – or a combination of all three. Our team of experienced product liability lawyers can explain these concepts, summarized briefly below, in more detail and determine which might apply to your situation:
- Breach of Warranty. There are two types of warranties – express and implied. An express warranty exists when a claim is made about a product, the buyer relies on that claim and then the claim turns out to be false. If an asbestos manufacturer, supplier or anyone involved in that chain claimed that using asbestos was safe, they may be held liable for injuries that result from that usage.
- An implied warranty accompanies the sale and use of products pursuant to state commercial code statutes. It is generally implied that a product will be safe and fit for its determined purpose. Asbestos was sold to many industries as an insulation product, and it was used for that purpose and should have been safe; therefore, its safety was implied simply by its sale.
- Negligence. There are four parts to a negligence claim – duty, breach, causation and damages. Asbestos manufacturers, suppliers and sellers may have had a duty (based on a legal standard) to provide adequate warning to people who used or were exposed to asbestos about its dangers. In most cases, warnings were not provided, so that duty may have very well been breached. If it can be determined that a plaintiff’s injury was ultimately caused by that asbestos use or exposure and they have been damaged, then liability is present.
- Strict Liability. Under strict liability, a plaintiff does not need to prove that a defendant acted negligently in order to recover damages. The fact that a product was unreasonably dangerous and sold by a retail manufacturer or seller may be enough to establish that a defendant may have breached its duty.
Ready To Talk About Your Mesothelioma Claim?
Deciding which legal theory to use in your case is only the first step in your case. Our law firm knows how to pursue your claim in state or federal court, and our skilled legal team knows how to negotiate with the parties responsible for your illness. We’ll take them to court if a settlement cannot be reached. At every step of the way, we keep your best interests in mind while keeping you up-to-date on your case’s progress.
For your mesothelioma claim, turn to an Illinois law firm with a record of success and a team of skilled Illinois mesothelioma lawyers who know how to get results.
Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard P.C., offers a free, no-obligation evaluation mesothelioma claims in Chicago and throughout Illinois. You will not pay for our legal services unless we obtain compensation for you and your family. Contact an Illinois mesothelioma lawyer today.
What Is Mesothelioma?
Sadly, the prognosis for mesothelioma cancer is grim – most patients die within a year or two after diagnosis.
Other diseases associated with asbestos exposure include asbestosis (a scarring of the lung tissue from an acid produced by the body’s attempt to dissolve the fiber) and various cancers that affect the lungs, gastrointestinal tract, kidneys, ovaries, testicles and larynx.
Types of Mesothelioma
Mesothelioma is cancer of the mesothelium – a protective lining made of mesothelial cells. The mesothelium forms sacs of fluid around most human organs to allow them to properly move and function.
Cancer in this lining causes the mesothelium cells to abnormally and uncontrollably divide – which can metastasize and spread to the organ they are protecting as well as to other organs. Although mesothelioma cancers can take anywhere from 20 to 50 years to appear, many patients die within one to two years of diagnosis.
Mesothelioma generally affects these three parts of the human body:
- Lungs (known as pleural mesothelioma)
- Abdomen (known as peritoneal mesothelioma)
- Heart (known as pericardium mesothelioma)
Pleural mesothelioma is cancer of the lungs that starts in the chest cavity or pleura, the lining around the chest cavity. It accounts for 75 percent of all mesothelioma cases. The most common symptoms include:
- Difficulty swallowing
- Night sweats / fever
- Persistent chest pain
- Persistent dry cough
- Shortness of breath.
Traditional treatments for pleural mesothelioma include radiation, chemotherapy and surgery. While radiation and chemotherapy can help to kill cancerous cells, these methods are risky as they kill healthy cells in the process and, like all cancer treatments, can lead to other health concerns. Surgery is also an option for pleural mesothelioma by removing all or part of the affected lung. However, that can be dangerous and seriously affect a patient’s overall health and future quality of life.
Peritoneal mesothelioma is cancer of the abdomen which starts in the abdominal area or peritoneum, the lining around the abdomen. It accounts for 10-20 percent of all mesothelioma cases. The most common symptoms include:
- Abdominal pain and swelling
- Constipation or diarrhea
- Nausea / vomiting
- Weight loss.
Traditional treatments for peritoneal mesothelioma also include radiation, chemotherapy and surgery to remove the cancerous tissue in the abdomen or gastrointestinal tract. However, treatment for peritoneal mesothelioma can be difficult, as it tends to metastasize more quickly than other types of mesothelioma. In many cases, treatments simply focus on the cancer’s symptoms and not a cure.
Pericardial mesothelioma is cancer of the heart, which starts in the pericardium or the exterior lining around the heart. It accounts for only about one percent of all mesothelioma cases. The most common symptoms include:
- Chest pain
- Difficulty breathing
- Irregular heartbeat
- Night sweats / fever.
Traditional treatments for pericardial mesothelioma also include radiation and chemotherapy; however, surgery to remove the cancer is risky due to its proximity to the heart. As with other forms of mesothelioma, many treatments simply focus on the cancer’s symptoms and not a cure.
Who Is At Risk For Mesothelioma?
Anyone who worked with, or was exposed to, asbestos in the past is at an increased risk of contracting mesothelioma. For decades asbestos use was common in power plants, auto plants, shipyards, chemical plants, aluminum plants, oil refineries, steel mills, paper plants, asbestos manufacturing plants and on construction job sites.
Asbestos Makers Knew Of Dangers
It is widely recognized that asbestos manufacturers and suppliers knew that working with, or being exposed to, asbestos had a serious risk of injury or death. However, most manufacturers and suppliers failed to warn about these known risks and failed to provide proper safety gear, putting thousands of innocent workers and their families in danger of contracting a cancer which often cannot be detected early on or successfully treated.
Over 1 Million Mesothelioma Lawsuits Filed
Over one million people have filed mesothelioma injury lawsuits against thousands of asbestos manufacturers and suppliers. Many more lawsuits are likely in the future as victims continue to be diagnosed with this fatal disease. According to the Centers for Disease Control’s National Center for Health Statistics and the National Institute for Occupational Safety & Health, 60,000 more people will die from malignant mesothelioma by the year 2030.
Mesothelioma Victims May Be Entitled To Compensation
Many mesothelioma lawsuits have resulted in multi-million dollar verdicts and settlements, and defendants have already paid out billions of dollars. While the facts and circumstances of every case are different, mesothelioma victims and their families may be entitled to compensation for damages that include:
- Medical costs
- Lost income
- Loss of spousal support and companionship
- Loss of earning capacity
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Physical impairment or disfigurement
- Costs of rehabilitation
- Emotional distress
- End of life expenses
- Pain and suffering
- Punitive damages and more.
Why It Makes Sense To Hire A Lawyer
Having a mesothelioma lawyer on your side can make all the difference when seeking to prevail in your mesothelioma illness lawsuit. In addition to advising you on your rights and determining the types of compensation for which you may be entitled, a mesothelioma lawyer knows which industries, companies and job sites have already been implicated in asbestos-related injuries, which asbestos manufacturers and suppliers have been found liable and in which legal venues to pursue your claim.
Contact a Chicago Mesothelioma Lawyer Today
At Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard P.C., our goal is to provide you with professional legal representation in personal injury, wrongful death and product liability litigation. Over the past 30 years, we have recovered over $800 million in personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits for our clients – including 200 cases with verdicts or settlements of $1 million or more.
We understand the pain associated with being diagnosed with mesothelioma years after being exposed to asbestos or to lose a loved one you never imagined could have contracted the disease. If you’ve developed mesothelioma, asbestosis or another asbestos-related injury, let our experience work for you.
For help in Chicago and throughout Illinois, contact a Chicago mesothelioma lawyer toll free at 312-372-1227 or use our free online contact form.