Asbestos may be a naturally-occurring substance, but it is also often deadly. Exposure on the job or because of a loved one’s employment could lead to cancer and other debilitating illnesses years later. Tragically, people find themselves in need of financial compensation decades after being exposed to asbestos in an employment context.
Many times, former employees who are coping with major health consequences need to file a claim against a special trust for compensation. Under these circumstances, a trust – rather than a business, organization or government agency that employed practices which served as the catalyst for toxic exposure – will cover the worker’s claim. Why do company-funded trusts play this role in compensating those who have been harmed by asbestos?
Trusts are often created as a result of business bankruptcies
The financial costs associated with an asbestos claim brought by sickened employees can add up to millions of dollars. Therefore, it has become somewhat common practice for businesses facing a large number of asbestos claims by former employees to pursue bankruptcy and reorganize as a means of limiting their losses.
Bankruptcy, in theory, protects the company from specific financial obligations. However, a business that endangered its workers by exposing them to a known human carcinogen cannot simply absolve itself of financial culpability for all current or future claims made by sickened workers.
Instead, a bankrupt organization is typically required to negotiate a large-scale contribution to an asbestos trust. The business itself will not handle any future asbestos claims and could very well end up ceasing operations long before some workers need to make claims.
Those sickened through exposure at a specific organization can then make a claim against the funds in an appropriate trust to help them recover their losses and support their loved ones despite their medical condition.
Note that trust claims can be difficult to manage
Just like a lawsuit against an employer or a large-scale workers’ compensation claim can be difficult to manage while also coping with medical issues, the same is typically true of claims made against an asbestos trust set up during business bankruptcy to compensate workers exposed to asbestos.
Those who believe that they may be entitled to compensation may benefit from connecting with a professional to file their claim and negotiate a settlement. Understanding the options available for compensation is crucial for those hoping to maximize their compensation via an asbestos-related claim against a former employer.