Documenting When Asbestos Exposure Occurred
If you have been diagnosed with mesothelioma, chances are you developed this deadly disease from exposure to asbestos. As the National Cancer Institute of the United States National Institutes of Health (NIH) notes, asbestos has been commercially mined and heavily used in North America since the mid to late 1800s.
It is a naturally occurring substance that is made up of six silica minerals and is further classified as either Serpentine or Apmhibole asbestos. Serpentine asbestos has typically been used in woven fabrics due to the fact that it contains Chrysotile. Chrysotile was the most heavily used asbestos containing element in the manufacturing industry.
This and other forms of asbestos have been used in insulation materials, fire-resistant fabrics, wall and joint compounds, roofing materials, material aboard large ships and in shipyards, and in the walls of many factories.
If you have worked in a factory that manufactured products for the construction industry or were working as a residential or commercial builder prior to the 1970s, there is a good chance that you were working in an asbestos-filled environment.
You should try to recall, as precisely as possible, if you were ever working in one of these environments during a time when the factory was renovated. It was common for workers to become exposed to deadly asbestos fibers during these times.When was I Exposed?
Once you know where the exposure occurred, it is helpful to determine when the exposure occurred. While it may be implausible to pinpoint an exact date and time in some cases, it is helpful to understand that it generally takes between 20 and 50 years for victims of asbestos exposure to develop any noticeable symptoms of the disease.
In some cases however, it is possible to determine exactly when exposure occurred. There are cases where factories had pipes insulated with asbestos-containing materials hired a contractor to replace the insulation. Even if the overhead workers were properly training and given sufficient protection, it was not uncommon for the other factory workers to be told to work under the falling asbestos dust without any additional protection.
At the Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Glassman, LLC, our Boston mesothelioma attorneys are familiar with cases where workers were told not to worry about the falling asbestos debris. The reason factory owners were willing to take these risks is because they knew it would take decades for workers to become sick and did not want to shut down production, which would cause them to lose profits.Documenting Your Asbestos Exposure
One of the most helpful things you can do to help your mesothelioma lawyer maximize your chances of obtaining full financial recovery is to document when you were exposed. If you have any pay records, awards, or other documents related to your employment that will be extremely helpful.
Another thing you can do to help prove when you were exposed to asbestos is to contact coworkers from that time period. It may be the case that some of them also developed mesothelioma and have already done much of the research. It is also helpful to speak with family members who may remember you coming home from work covered with dust and debris. The more evidence you can provide, the better your chances of a financial recovery.
Even if you only have a little information to start with, an experienced asbestos attorney will be able to gather more evidence during the discovery process of litigation. There may be internal memos and other documents that can be used to prove your case.
Contact the Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Glassman to schedule a free consultation with a Boston asbestos lawyer to determine if you have a case for an asbestos related illness.
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