Asbestos is an insidiously dangerous substance. It can cause numerous serious medical conditions, ranging from asbestosis and lung cancer to mesothelioma. Mesothelioma is a particularly aggressive cancer that develops in the lining of your organs. It is also very slow to develop at first even though it makes people ill very quickly once they notice symptoms.
It could be decades before you realize you have developed a medical condition related to asbestos exposure. By that point, your former employer may have gone out of business or even declared bankruptcy. Thankfully, bankruptcy does not automatically exempt them from asbestos-related liability if their former workers are sick.
They may have created an asbestos trust
Businesses whose workers must handle asbestos can find themselves facing multimillion-dollar lawsuits from former workers. Mesothelioma is deadly, and the treatments available for it are often quite expensive.
Former workers may need to seek compensation for their care and for the future needs of their dependent family members. The courts will typically expect a business to set aside resources for workers affected by asbestos on the job when they file bankruptcy. They will need to use some of their resources to establish an asbestos bankruptcy trust.
Former workers can then make claims against the trust when they get diagnosed with mesothelioma or another asbestos-related medical condition. Other times, the courts may decide that a company can discharge some debts, but they may not include the company’s obligation to asbestos-exposed workers in the discharge for the business’s bankruptcy.
Sickened workers deserve compensation
Asbestos regulations for a long time were not strict enough to adequately protect workers. Many companies failed to even meet the minimal restriction the government put in place on the use of asbestos and the need for certain protective equipment for employees handling this potentially deadly substance.
There is nothing shameful, greedy or inappropriate about expecting financial compensation when your employer exposed you to something that later made you very sick. The company has an obligation to its workers because it exposed them to a dangerous human carcinogen.
Pursuing an asbestos-related claim against a former employer or their bankruptcy mesothelioma trust can help you support your family or pay for your treatment.