Exposure to asbestos often happens in the workplace. Unfortunately, it is often hard to hold the employer responsible for such exposure due to worker’s compensation packages. Because it’s a work-related injury, compensation for the injury, medical bills and lack of income during recovery are made through worker’s compensation. This article will discuss if an employee can sue the employer for asbestos exposure.
It is important to note that as with any personal injury claim there is a set bar to the time limit to initiate a claim. However, extensions exist based on the victim having knowledge of the injury. As a result, the claim may be initiated much later as the victim may not be aware of the injury. Often, being diagnosed with mesothelioma may happen up to 30 years after the initial exposure to asbestos. The court may grant an extension to the victim to bring forward the case after the discovery of the illness.
Worker’s Compensation and Asbestos Exposure
Being able to sue the employer when exposed to asbestos depends on the worker’s compensation packages. In addition, it depends on how extensive the worker’s compensation benefits are. Some victims suffer from mesothelioma and need constant medical attention so as to recover or live out the rest of their short lives. In most cases, the employee does not have the ability to sue the company when worker’s compensation covers the matter. This is mainly because the worker’s compensation is usually exclusive as the main means of remedy in such cases.
However, being able to sue the employer generally requires specific factors to exist in one’s claim. Some factors include:
- Worker’s compensation or insurance can’t pay for asbestos injuries first
- Negligence on the part of the employer and no worker’s compensation package or an exception that allows for a lawsuit
If an employee learns about asbestos exposure and illness, they must contact a worker’s compensation agent. However, it may be necessary to contact a lawyer to know all available options.