The Careful Investigation Required For Your Mesothelioma Case
In theory, a law firm should do considerable investigation before it tells a client that it can take on a mesothelioma case. But there are some law firms that just want to get people to sign up with them. Then they’ll turn around and broker that case to someone else, because they have no real intention of doing any actual work involved in a mesothelioma case.
These businesses assume that if you have a mesothelioma diagnosis, there will be money in it for them from somewhere. Their attitude is, “We don’t care because we are going to get a third or half of the fees for no work.”
We do things differently at our asbestos law firm. Once a client calls to consult with me about a mesothelioma case it establishes a confidential attorney client relationship, whether or not they hire me. I firmly believe that I am ethically obligated to give them good advice and protect their best interests and their confidences.
We may know in the first phone conversation that someone has enough provable asbestos exposure for a mesothelioma case and who the likely culprits are. There are other mesothelioma cases that require extensive investigation before I can tell a client the case has value.
Here are five questions we consider:
1. Is the mesothelioma diagnosis accurate? Nowadays it usually is since it is almost always based on a pathology report after a biopsy, and even a community hospital pathology department uses standard lab tests and often gets outside consultation.
2. Can we show that there was asbestos exposure? Almost all the time we can. Sometimes people don’t remember where they were exposed to asbestos. I had a mesothelioma case involving an orthopedic surgeon who didn’t have a clue. After a couple hours of detailed interview, he remembered that one summer during college he worked at an oil refinery doing clean-up.
3. Can we identify where and when the asbestos exposure took place, and figure out whose asbestos product it was? We explore a client’s work history and exposure history to see what evidence there is. A client might say, “My dad worked at the shipyard.” Or “I did drywall work.”
4. Whose asbestos fiber was it? Not just who made the products that were used at that time and place, but how did the asbestos get there? Anyone in the chain of production and distribution from the mining company who dug up the asbestos fiber to the product manufacturer to the wholesaler to the local hardware store has liability for the asbestos product, and thus for the exposure.
5. Is the case worth doing? That is something we will decide before we commit to doing it. The deciding factor is whether we will be able to get enough money from anyone for you to justify your time and energy. That requires some effort to determine.
Promising someone the moon and the stars and not being able to deliver is not a good thing, and the last thing a mesothelioma patient needs is to waste time and energy on a lawsuit with mesothelioma attorneys who can’t deliver what they promise, when time and energy are the patient’s most limited and precious resource. At Kazan Law, we are honest and conservative. We tell prospective clients the truth about what a case will take out of them, and what it will likely produce for them and the family. We aim to exceed our clients’ expectations. No one’s ever gotten mad at me for doing better than I told them we would.