Saturday, June 15, 2013

Allow The following tips Help You Find the Best Mesothelioma Lawyers in Philadelphia

By Peyter Draheim

Mesothelioma is a word that can devastate an entire family. A relatively rare form of lung cancer, mesothelioma is a bit more intimidating than other cancers because it could have been prevented by having precautionary protection available from asbestos exposure, and it is incurable. Even more tragic is the bitter truth that, at the time the victim was exposed to asbestos, the dangers were not yet known. And, since decades sometimes pass before the symptoms of mesothelioma are noticed, the disease is now beginning to appear more frequently than ever before.

Philadelphia, and other cities in Pennsylvania, has had a higher incidence of mesothelioma cases than surrounding states, due to the large number of power plants, ship yards, refineries, and other industries that used asbestos prolifically before the dangers became known. It is for this reason that mesothelioma lawsuits in Philadelphia have increased exponentially in the past couple of decades, and why it is crucial that victims of this horrible disease seek top Philadelphia legal counsel who only practices in mesothelioma cases.

Finding the best Philadelphia mesothelioma lawyer may initially seem difficult, because there are many lawyers in Philadelphia, and not all of them are qualified to handle a mesothelioma lawsuit. The laws pertaining to damages awarded to victims of mesothelioma are very specific, and it is extremely important that only lawyers who specialize in mesothelioma cases are used.

As the search for the best asbestos-related injury lawyer in Philadelphia proceeds, certain criteria should be given utmost consideration: (a) The lawyer must be very familiar with mesothelioma and the manner in which it affects not only the patient, but the patient's family; (b) The lawyer should be experienced in filing all claims, supporting documentation, and other matters conducive to the claim; (c) The lawyer should be proficient in calculating and requesting sufficient compensation in the claim to take care of the patient's future expenses; (d) The lawyer should be willing to travel to the patient's home for consultations; (e) The lawyer should never charge any up-front fees, and should only work on a contingency basis. This means that if no monetary rewards are granted, the patient pays no attorney fees. The lawyer only earns money if the client is granted an award and the lawyer's fee is based upon a percentage of the award.

Sometimes the most difficult aspect of finding the best mesothelioma attorney in Philadelphia is knowing where to start. One of the best places to begin the quest is with the Pennsylvania State Bar Association. While they cannot recommend any attorney's services over another, they can provide a list of attorneys who are in good standing with the bar association, as well as provide information as to the specialty of the practice.

Once a list has been procured, the sometimes tedious task of refining the list to the best lawyers must begin. Much of this research can be accomplished online, or through contact with the clerk of the appropriate court where the case files are kept. Key factors to consider include the number of cases successfully resolved, and the average amount of monetary award that the lawyer was able to secure for his/her client.

An even better resource for finding the best lawyer is to speak to other clients who have been represented by lawyers on the list. A former client will have no reason to not be 100% candid with the inquisitor, and can be a valuable source of information. The internet is another resource that can be tapped into for mesothelioma support groups that are more than happy to help guide the patient through the process of finding the best legal counsel. Some of these support groups provide online search tools that can be used by the patient in the comfort and privacy of his own home. As the search progresses, the patient should give first priority to those Philadelphia attorneys who do not charge a fee for the first consultation.

Just as there are stellar Philadelphia attorneys in the practice of mesothelioma compensation, there are also attorneys who should be avoided. They are not terribly difficult to identify, as long as the client knows what constitutes a red flag. One such indicator would be the attorney who, upon a brief first meeting with the client, states that he will be able to procure a specific amount of money for the client. This is a red flag because it indicates an attorney who plans to use a standard, "one-size-fits-all" approach to seeking compensation with preprinted petitions and claim forms, with no plans to research the client's individual situation or take special circumstances into account. This may result in the client being awarded an amount that is far short of the potential figure that could have been gained from the action.

Also, if the attorney does not specialize in mesothelioma cases, but also handles other types of cases such as land transactions, wills, divorces, and other types of cases, he or she may not be the best choice for handling a mesothelioma case. The instances of mesothelioma in Philadelphia have skyrocketed over the past decade, resulting in a sharp increase in the claims and lawsuits that have been executed by victims seeking relief. As stated above, this trend has caused many companies to seek their own relief through bankruptcy courts, which has led to the passing of legislation specifically targeting these companies and the claims against them. Only a seasoned Philadelphia attorney who specializes in mesothelioma cases will have the knowledge and expertise to provide the exemplary service that the client deserves.

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