There is no such thing as a "typical" settlement amount for mesothelioma cases. Compensation depends on a number of factors and only your lawyer can give you a fair estimate on how much you might expect to receive from the defendant(s). Even your attorney, however, might be surprised by the outcome.
Through the last several years, a number of laws have been passed in regards to asbestos-related lawsuits. Many of those laws are the result of an exorbitant number of asbestos cases filed in the 1990s. Some jurisdictions are still overloaded with such cases. In response, however, a number of states now demand "neutral" medical testing for asbestos-related claims and many states only reward compensation to individuals with mesothelioma and not to those sickened with other-asbestos related complaints, like asbestosis or scarring of the lungs.
Depending on the merits of the case, mesothelioma patients have received anywhere from a few thousand dollars to several million. If a defendant determines that his chance of winning at trial is slim, his lawyers will probably offer an out-of-court settlement before trial. Often, settlement amounts offered are low at first and your lawyer may advise you not to accept the first one made to you. As the trial nears, the offers may get higher, especially if the defendant wishes to avoid a trial at all costs. Your lawyer will advise you when the time comes to say "yes" to an out-of-court settlement.
However, if your lawyer believes that your best bet is to go to trial, he/she will advise you to disregard all out-of-court offers and proceed with the trial. Once your case is heard by a judge and/or jury, the amount of settlement - if any - will be their decision. Judges often look to past settlements in similar cases to help them determine what is fair.
Last modified: December 27, 2010.