Toxic Tort Litigation
Unfortunately, workers across the U.S. are developing illnesses because of their job. The majority of these illnesses arise due to exposure to toxic chemicals at work. Dry cleaning employees are often exposed to Benzene, a solvent notoriously linked to cancer. Construction site workers may be exposed to asbestos. Warehouse and manufacturing employees are often exposed to toxic fumes. A variety of workers are in jobs that expose them to diesel exhaust which can lead to both lung cancer and bladder cancer. Toxic mold is also a pervasive problem in U.S. workplaces.
When a person or group of people becomes ill due to toxic chemical exposure, they may be able to seek compensation for the harm they have suffered through pursuing an environmental or toxic tort action. A toxic tort action is a civil claim that seeks to hold the party responsible for causing the exposure to dangerous chemicals and get compensation for the victims who have endured often serious or fatal illnesses and injuries caused by that toxic chemical exposure.
What Happens If I Developed an Illness from My Job?
All workers have the right to safe and healthy working conditions pursuant to laws such as the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (OSH Act). The government and legal system has recognized that it is critical for employees in the United States to be free from unreasonable dangers and hazards to their health and safety. Generally speaking, workers who have sustained job related injuries or illnesses will be compensated pursuant to their employers’ workers’ compensation insurance coverage. There are, however, exceptions to this general rule. One such exception is if a worker has been injured or developed an illness caused by a toxic substance. If you have developed an illness from your job caused by exposure to a toxic substance, then you are able to pursue compensation outside of the workers’ compensation coverage. This can be accomplished through pursuing a civil claim for damages related to your exposure to the toxic substance at work.
These types of toxic tort claims can be complicated. This is especially true because there can be a lengthy delay between the exposure and when signs of the illness caused by the exposure present themselves. In fact, many cases show that toxic chemical exposure will not show signs of the damage it has caused a person until decades after the exposure. The illness can develop over a period of time and become progressively more serious, sometimes proving fatal.
If you have developed an illness from your job, your priority, first and foremost, is seeking the medical attention you need to manage your illness. Your health is top priority. Follow your doctor’s recommendations regarding follow-up medical treatment. If possible, seek consistent medical treatment with the same medical professionals. Should you choose to pursue legal recourse seeking compensation for damages associated with your work-related illness, records documenting consistent medical treatment will be invaluable evidence of your damages. Additionally, it will show any signs of the disease getting progressively worse over time. Be sure to communicate with your treating physicians that you have been exposed to toxic chemicals in the workplace.
Consult with a toxic tort attorney as soon as possible. As previously stated, these types of claims are complicated. An occupational disease is a medical condition related to exposure to toxins in the workplace and the disease or illness may not present itself for years after the exposure. Employers and their insurance companies will take advantage of this time delay and try to claim that the illness is not at all job related. They will argue that the illness is actually a preexisting condition or that something else caused the illness. Do not let them off the hook. Workers develop debilitating illnesses because a company, a property manager, or another responsible party was negligent and failed to keep workers safe from environmental hazards. These workers deserve to be compensated for the harm they have suffered.
Toxic Tort Litigation Attorney
If you have developed an illness from your job, consult with an attorney as soon as possible. It is a good idea, in particular, to consult with an attorney who focuses on toxic tort litigation. The majority of work related illnesses are due to toxic chemical exposure in the workplace. These types of cases require experience and specific knowledge of this area of law to see the most successful results. Contact a toxic tort litigation attorney today.