A mesothelioma diagnosis is a scary reality for many Greenville workers. This type of cancer can impact your quality of life for the rest of your life, and it gets worse over time. Unfortunately, many workers also struggle to get the financial support they need.
If you were recently diagnosed with mesothelioma, you may be concerned about your workers’ compensation benefits. You may have grounds for action if you seek workers’ compensation benefits, even if denied. Here is what you can expect from your attorney.
What Is Mesothelioma?
Mesothelioma is a condition typically caused by exposure to asbestos. Asbestos is a mineral made of tiny fibers. If you accidentally breathe these fibers, they may create lung problems that eventually become cancer called mesothelioma.
While symptoms may be controlled, mesothelioma is not curable. Because of this, those who have been impacted by asbestos exposure, who are now sick because of this exposure, may be owed workers’ compensation benefits.
You and your workers’ comp attorney can determine what benefits you and your family are scheduled to help you recover and maintain your health during this difficult time.
Am I Eligible for Workers’ Comp for My Illness?
When you file your workers’ comp claim for your mesothelioma diagnosis, generally, as long as you were hurt or made ill because of your job, you should be eligible for compensation for your suffering. However, if you have any questions or uncertainty about your claim, your lawyer can help guide you.
Before you file a workers’ compensation claim, you may need to prove your illness is related to your work. For example, if a worker had a heart attack on the job but suffered from a genetic condition that caused heart attacks, they may have difficulty proving their heart attack was caused by their position.
While asbestos is less common in everyday products, you may need to prove you may have been exposed to the material during your job. This exposure is more widespread for factory workers and miners, who may encounter asbestos in the mines or work with this material.
What to Expect from the Workers’ Comp Process
When you first receive a mesothelioma diagnosis, your first step is to report the illness to your employer. Injuries or diagnoses must be reported within 90 days of the incident. Once your employer is aware, they have only a few days to notify the insurance company.
The insurance company then investigates your case. Insurance adjusters may speak with your doctor, review your current capacity for work, and calculate your current and future potential needs. From there, they will approve or deny your claim.
If you receive approval, your benefits should begin shortly after acceptance. These benefits can support you during this difficult time. If denied, you may need to take further steps with a lawyer to appeal that decision.
What if I Am Denied Compensation?
If you are denied workers’ compensation, do not panic—you are not out of options. Your workers’ comp attorney can help you get the benefits you need to focus on your health, not staying afloat.
Your lawyer will first determine why you were denied. Sometimes, it may be as simple as missing paperwork documenting your illness. Once the cause of your denial is known, your lawyer can take action on your behalf.
A workers’ comp attorney can advocate for you during hearings about your worker’s comp benefits. They can provide evidence that you are due compensation and defend your case against claims that you made a mistake or are not as ill as you say. This process can be complicated when you do not have the support of a lawyer on your side.
Benefits for Mesothelioma Victims
When suffering from mesothelioma, you need financial support. You may be too sick to work, but that does not mean you should not get the funds you need for recovery. Your workers’ compensation benefits should cover these costs.
Below are the benefits you may be eligible for if you are suffering from mesothelioma:
- Medical Benefits – When you suffer a severe illness because of your job, you should not have to pay out of pocket for your losses. Your workers’ compensation benefits should cover the costs of all medical treatment related to your illness for as long as you are ill.
- Wage Replacement – Disability benefits cover a portion of the wages you should have received if you could work. Your lawyer can help you determine what compensation you should receive for this.
- Death Benefits – Your workers’ compensation provides some help for your final expenses and offers a portion of your wages to your spouse and dependents under 18. These continue until death or remarriage for spouses or until they reach age 18 for dependents.
If you believe you have grounds for these benefits, contact a lawyer. Your attorney can help you get the benefits you are owed when you are exposed to asbestos during work and need help.
Need Help? Connect with a Workers’ Compensation Lawyer
When your job leaves you with a devastating illness, you should not have to live with that illness without support. A mesothelioma diagnosis and its treatment are costly, and you may need long-term treatment for this condition.
If you are concerned about getting the workers’ compensation benefits you need for your treatment, contact the Shelly Leeke Law Firm. Our team understands that you are in a difficult position and need support, and we are here to provide that for our workers’ compensation clients.
Ready to learn more? Start with a free consultation. When you are prepared to get the aid you need for a workers’ compensation case about your mesothelioma, reach out by calling our office or completing our quick contact form today.