How a Lawyer Can Assist with Workers’ Compensation for an Occupational Illness in Columbia

Columbia, MO is a city with a long history of industry and manufacturing. Unfortunately, this also means that there are many workers in the city who have been exposed to harmful toxins and chemicals over the years. If you have been diagnosed with an occupational illness, such as mesothelioma, a seasoned workers’ compensation attorney could help you obtain benefits. To learn more about how a lawyer can assist with workers’ compensation for an occupational illness in Columbia, contact a legal representative today.

What is a Mesothelioma?

Mesothelioma is a type of cancer that is caused by exposure to asbestos. Asbestos was once used extensively in many industries, including construction, shipbuilding, and automotive manufacturing. Workers who were exposed to asbestos fibers are at a higher risk of developing this occupational illness.

Symptoms and Injuries Associated with Mesothelioma

Mesothelioma can take years, even decades, to develop. This makes it hard to diagnose in the early stages. Symptoms of mesothelioma may include shortness of breath, chest pain, coughing up blood, fatigue, and weight loss. Additionally, mesothelioma can cause a number of injuries, including:

  • Asbestosis: This is a lung disease that is caused by asbestos exposure. Symptoms include shortness of breath and a persistent cough.
  • Cancer: Asbestos exposure has been linked to several types of cancer, including mesothelioma, lung cancer, and ovarian cancer.
  • Pleural effusion: This is a buildup of fluid in the space between the lungs and the chest wall.
  • Pleural thickening: This is a thickening of the tissue that lines the lungs.

These symptoms and injuries can be debilitating and even life-threatening. If you have been diagnosed with an occupational illness such as mesothelioma, you may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits with the help of hardworking attorney in Columbia.

How Does Mesothelioma Occur in the Workplace?

Occupational illnesses are caused by exposure to harmful substances while on the job. In Columbia, many workers were exposed to asbestos at some point in their careers. Asbestos is a known carcinogen, and exposure to it can lead to the development of mesothelioma. When these fibers are inhaled, they can become lodged in the lining of the lungs and other organs. Over time, this exposure can lead to the development of mesothelioma.

If you have been diagnosed with mesothelioma, it is important to speak with a workers’ compensation lawyer in Columbia to discuss your legal options.

Filing a Workers’ Compensation Claim for Mesothelioma in Columbia

Under Missouri law, if you have been diagnosed with mesothelioma or a similar occupational illness, there are some important steps you must take to ensure you get the compensation you deserve.

See Doctor and Get Medical Treatment:

You must see a doctor and get treatment for your occupational illness. You can choose your own doctor, but your employer may require you to see a specific doctor. You must obtain a doctor’s certification stating that your illness is work-related. This certification must be filed with the Missouri Division of Workers’ Compensation.

File a Notice of Occupational Disease Claim:

You must notify your employer that you have been diagnosed with an occupational illness and that you intend to file a workers’ compensation claim. This notice must be in writing and must be filed within 30 days of your diagnosis.

File Your Claim:

Once you have gathered all the necessary documentation, you can file your workers’ compensation claim with the Missouri Division of Workers’ Compensation.

A local attorney can ensure a person suffering from an occupational illness follows the proper steps to obtain workers’ compensation benefits.

How a Workers’ Compensation Lawyer can Assist with a Mesothelioma Injury Claim

Unlike an impact injury that occurs on the job, an occupational illness develops over time. This can make it hard to prove that your illness is work-related. Therefore, it’s so important to speak with an experienced attorney if you have been diagnosed with an occupational illness. A legal representative can help you understand your rights and options under the law. A lawyer can also help you file a claim for benefits and ensure that you get the compensation you deserve. Finally, you may also want to file a personal injury lawsuit against your employer or the manufacturer of the asbestos products you were exposed to.

In addition, an experienced Columbia workers’ compensation lawyer will be able to help you gather the necessary evidence to support your claim, as well as negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf to try and get you the full amount of benefits you deserve.

Contact Our Attorneys Today if You’ve Suffer from an Occupational Illness in Columbia

If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with an occupational illness, such as mesothelioma, it is important to speak with an experienced workers’ compensation attorney as soon as possible.

The Law Office of Chris Miller can help you understand your rights and how a lawyer can assist with workers’ compensation for an occupational illness in Columbia. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.

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