Asbestosis is a serious illness caused by exposure to asbestos. When you are choosing an asbestosis lawyer, you want to look for a personal injury lawyer with experience in asbestos-related lawsuits. You need a lawyer who has a strong history of representing plaintiffs and winning large settlements. Your asbestosis lawyer should understand the dangers of asbestos exposure and be able to present your case effectively to a jury.
Most countries have professional organizations or unions of lawyers. These organizations can be an excellent resource in choosing an asbestosis lawyer. If you live in the United States, the American Bar Association (ABA) can provide you with a list of licensed, qualified attorneys in your area. In Canada and some parts of Europe, your local Law Society or Barrister's Society can provide you with similar guidance.
Once you have a list of qualified, licensed attorneys, look for attorneys with asbestos experience. This can include attorneys who have tried cases relating to asbestosis, mesothelioma, or asbestos-linked lung cancer. The attorney should be able to provide you with information on outcomes of past cases. It is important to understand, however, that the settlement in each case is different and that past victories or settlement amounts are not necessarily indicative of the results you will achieve in your case.
Ensure that the asbestosis attorney does not have any previous malpractice lawsuits against him or her. You can ask the prospective attorney whether he or she has any pending or resolved malpractice suits. In many jurisdictions, you can also research this information with the local professional law society or by doing a public records search.
Interview the asbestosis attorney to determine what fees will be assessed. In the United States, most personal injury lawyers, including asbestosis lawyers, charge on a contingent fee basis, which means that they only get paid if you win the case. Remember that you can only bring a lawsuit one time, however. If you lose a lawsuit against the party who exposed you to asbestos, you can't simply hire another asbestosis lawyer and try again.
When interviewing your prospective asbestosis lawyer, pay attention to his or her manner and method of asking questions. He or she will be presenting your case in front of a jury, so you want to ensure that he or she has a professional and capable manner. Your asbestosis lawyer will also be acting as your advocate in the legal system, so ensure that he or she seems interested in hearing about your case and in helping you get justice.
You may also want to investigate potential class actions. Asbestos exposure was a common problem, so class action lawsuits exist in the United States relating to asbestos-related illness. When you join a class action, your case becomes part of a group of cases handled by one asbestosis lawyer. You lose the right to litigate individually, but you will become part of a group of other victims who are facing similar legal issues.