Find a Mesothelioma Lawyer in Birmingham, Alabama
Birmingham is one of the largest cities in the state of Alabama. According to the most recent U.S. Census Bureau data, approximately 210,000 people live in the city. If you live in this city or worked here and now have a mesothelioma diagnosis, Mesothelioma Guide can help you find a lawyer with connections to Birmingham.
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Top Mesothelioma Lawyers and Law Firms in Birmingham, Alabama
There are a handful of mesothelioma and asbestos lawyers in Birmingham or around the area near Birmingham, such as Hoover, Jasper, Trussville, Pleasant Grove, Hueytown and Bessemer.
One website lists 10 asbestos and mesothelioma attorneys in the Birmingham area. However, these local lawyers are likely personal injury attorneys who include mesothelioma and asbestos cases in a long list. They do not specialize in asbestos cases, which is often needed for the complexities of mesothelioma lawsuits.
Mesothelioma Guide has a list of a few top mesothelioma law firms that can help you even if you live in Birmingham.
Why to Find a National Mesothelioma Law Firm
There are a few reasons why national mesothelioma law firms are better than local personal injury attorneys. The top reasons are: versatility; experience; and no hiring fees.
Your Case Likely Can Be Filed in Multiple States
Asbestos compensation claims usually involve multiple states. This fact is due to asbestos exposure being linked to multiple states:
- The state you were exposed to asbestos
- The state you live in currently while diagnosed with mesothelioma
- The state where the asbestos you were exposed to was manufactured
- The state where the asbestos company responsible for your cancer has its headquarters
Each of these locations, and others, can be part of your mesothelioma compensation claim. A national lawyer will either be licensed in all 50 states or can help you find a different national lawyer to handle a claim for a specific state. Local attorneys only licensed in one state will not be able to help you as much.
More Experience Will Benefit You
National lawyers and law firms have far more experience than local attorneys at handling mesothelioma claims. Consider how rare mesothelioma is as a cancer. There are around 2,500 new cases each year, which are distributed throughout the United States.
Only a few hundred, at most, are in Alabama, which means an average of a handful occur in Birmingham. Local attorneys in Birmingham will have limited experience handling these unique legal cases.
National lawyers handle most mesothelioma cases. They’re trusted legal experts and have a track record of winning for their clients.
You Won’t Have to Pay Hiring Costs
Most attorneys require clients to pay hiring fees for their services. National mesothelioma lawyers do not ask for any upfront costs.
The top mesothelioma lawyers work on a contingency basis, which means they only are paid if their client receives compensation. They receive a percentage of the mesothelioma compensation payment. If the case is unsuccessful, the client does not owe the attorney any fees.
This type of structure creates a no-risk situation for the mesothelioma patient and their family. Choosing a lawyer working on a contingency basis is highly recommended, and the top national firms use this setup. Local lawyers might not.
Top Asbestos Lawsuit Verdicts in Birmingham
The largest mesothelioma lawsuit verdict connected to Birmingham occurred in 1998. A group of 21 former steel workers at the U.S. Steel mill in Birmingham developed asbestos diseases from exposure at the mill. They filed their case in Texas and were awarded $115.6 million by a Texas jury.
How to File a Mesothelioma Lawsuit in Birmingham, Alabama
The top mesothelioma lawyers will handle the majority of the steps in filing your case in court. However, you should know the steps to ensure your lawyer is following the proper process and moving your case through the court system as quickly as possible.
Here are the main steps to filing mesothelioma lawsuits in Birmingham, Alabama:
Find a mesothelioma lawyer and meet with them, plus others on the legal team
Provide a thorough history of your exposure to asbestos, either at your job or in your home
File your mesothelioma claim at the appropriate court in Birmingham
Receive a full review from your lawyers of how your history of exposure is linked to at-fault asbestos manufacturing companies and companies that used asbestos in products
Provide a deposition about your mesothelioma cancer and exposure history
Discuss a potential mesothelioma settlement with the at-fault companies
If no settlement is reached, then take the case to trial
Filing an Asbestos Trust Fund Claim
Asbestos trust funds require a slightly different, and shorter, process. You won’t go to court or negotiate a settlement for these. The compensation amount is fixed, and the company paying victims has already filed for bankruptcy and received responsibility for exposure to asbestos.
Companies that filed for bankruptcy to avoid lawsuits are required to set up asbestos trust funds. These accounts have millions of dollars to pay future asbestos disease victims.
Once you establish your work or residential history and connect it to your asbestos exposure, your lawyer will file claims with the appropriate asbestos trust funds. Again, this is a reason to find a national lawyer. Local personal injury attorneys won’t know as much about asbestos trust fund compensation.
Asbestos Locations in Birmingham, Alabama
Mesothelioma Guide has a database of locations where asbestos existed and asbestos exposure likely happened. These locations can all be sites of exposure, possibly your own exposure and the cause of your mesothelioma.
There are nearly 100 known asbestos locations in Birmingham. A few of them are:
- Alabama Power Plant
- Birmingham Electric Company
- Birmingham Flooring Company
- Birmingham Linen Supply Company
- Birmingham Machine and Foundry Company
- Birmingham Oil Mills, Inc.
- First National Building/Southern Natural Gas
- Gorgas Steam Plant
- Jefferson Iron & Metal
- Moffett Plumbing & Heating Company
- U.S. Steel
- Western Grain Feed Plant
At-Risk Occupations for People in Birmingham
A few occupations are linked to regular asbestos exposure. Many of these jobs were common in Birmingham throughout the 20th century, when asbestos was actively added to materials for construction and insulation.
Some of the top occupations for asbestos exposure in Birmingham are:
- Gas plant workers
- Steel plant workers
- Construction workers
- Insulation workers
- Automobile mechanics
- Floor plant workers
- Oil refinery workers
Asbestos Laws and Regulations in Birmingham
Asbestos is not banned yet in the United States. There are not any additional laws or regulations in Birmingham, Alabama, that make the sale or use of asbestos more strict than anywhere else.
Fortunately, most companies have found replacements to keep people safe and avoid legal issues. The only industry still using asbestos is the chlor-alkali industry, which has just a few manufacturing plants left that work with asbestos. The industry’s leaders claim asbestos is needed to create chlor-alkali chemicals.
Governing Bodies in Alabama Overseeing Asbestos Handling and Removal
The Alabama Toxic Substances Control Act governs asbestos regulation throughout Alabama. Its purpose is to train workers to identify and remove asbestos in schools and other high-population buildings. Schools are a common place for legacy asbestos since most schools were built in the 20th century when asbestos was popular.
The Alabama Department of Environmental Management (ADEM) is responsible for asbestos management and handling. Remodeling or demolishing old buildings may disturb asbestos, which can be dangerous. This regulatory group ensures workers have protective equipment and follow protocol for asbestos removal.
To become certified to handle or remove asbestos, you must complete Alabama’s Asbestos Accreditation Training Program. You can find approved training providers here and then look at the Asbestos Certification Qualification Requirements. Finally, you’d apply online for Individual Asbestos Accreditation.
Once your application is approved, you’ll:
- Certify your accreditation with the Alabama Department of Environmental Management by completing the Application for Asbestos Removal Contractor Certification ADEM Form 497
- Submit Notice of Asbestos Abatement and/or Demolition ADEM Form 496 to the Alabama Department of Environmental Management
Statute of Limitations for Asbestos Compensation Claims in Birmingham
The statute of limitations is the time limit allowed to file a lawsuit or other legal claim. In Alabama, the statute of limitations for asbestos compensation claims is two (2) years. This applies to every city in Alabama, including Birmingham.
The statute of limitations is the same for personal injury lawsuits and wrongful death claims. Mesothelioma and asbestos cases fall within personal injury and wrongful death law.
The statute of limitations for mesothelioma lawsuits begins once the patient learns they have this rare cancer. If the patient has passed away, then the statute of limitations begins once the victim died or an autopsy confirms for the family that mesothelioma was the cause of death.
If you or a loved one has mesothelioma, look for a lawyer licensed in Alabama and knowledgeable of Birmingham asbestos locations. Your case’s success depends on finding an experienced, national attorney. Don’t settle for a local lawyer with limited experience and succes
Mesothelioma Guide can help you find a law firm meeting this specific criteria. Contact our patient advocates or legal experts for help.