Asbestos Trust Funds
Asbestos trust funds established by bankrupt companies offer compensation for asbestos exposure victims. If you or a loved one have a medical condition due to asbestos exposure, Bergman Oslund Udo Little’s knowledgeable and compassionate attorneys can determine whether you are eligible for asbestos trust fund compensation. Our team in Washington and Oregon has practiced personal injury law with a specialty in asbestos exposure and mesothelioma lawsuits since 1995.
Asbestos exposure can cause various illnesses, including asbestosis, pleural plaques, asbestos lung cancer, and mesothelioma. Many of these conditions are costly to treat, especially if not covered by insurance.
If you or a loved one developed an illness from interacting with an asbestos-containing product, you may be eligible for asbestos trust fund compensation. Bankrupt asbestos product manufacturers created asbestos trust funds to set aside money for present and future asbestos victims. Although every case differs, compensation obtained from asbestos trust funds may reach several hundred thousand dollars. Bergman Oslund Udo Little’s Washington and Oregon personal injury lawyers can advise about your case value.
What Is an Asbestos Trust Fund?
When asbestos and mesothelioma lawsuit filings rose sharply in the 80s and 90s, many asbestos manufacturers filed for bankruptcy to avoid paying victims. The courts required these companies to set aside money in asbestos trusts for current and future victims of the company’s products.
As of 2023, over $30 billion has been set aside in asbestos trust funds to help asbestos-exposure victims and their families. Companies with asbestos trust funds include but are not limited to the following:
- Armstrong World Industries
- DII Industries
- Federal-Mogul Corp
- Johns-Manville Corporation
- Pittsburgh Corning Corp.
- Turning & Newell
- United States Gypsum (USG)
- W.R. Grace
How Does an Asbestos Trust Fund Work?
If you or a loved one are eligible to file an asbestos claim, you can submit a claim to an asbestos trust fund created by the company responsible for your asbestos exposure. If you can show that they were exposed to the company’s product or if you worked at an approved jobsite where the product has been shown to be used and developed an illness from that exposure, the trust fund will provide financial compensation. You can then use the funds to pay medical, out-of-pocket, and other fees.
If more than one company exposed you to asbestos, file claims against every company responsible for your exposure. You can also file an asbestos lawsuit against asbestos companies that have not yet declared bankruptcy. Talk to an experienced mesothelioma lawyer in Washington or Oregon to learn more about your options.
Eligibility for Asbestos Trust Funds
You may be eligible to file an asbestos trust fund claim if you or a loved one was:
- Diagnosed with an asbestos illness such as mesothelioma or asbestos-related lung cancer
- Exposed to an asbestos-containing product from a company with an asbestos trust
You may still be eligible to file an asbestos trust fund claim even if your loved one has already passed away from their asbestos illness. A trusted mesothelioma lawyer in Oregon or Washington can explain your options.
What Asbestos Illnesses Can You File an Asbestos Trust Fund Claim For?
Most people file asbestos trust fund claims for mesothelioma and asbestos lung cancer, but those are not the only illnesses you can claim. Here is a list of the asbestos-related illnesses for which you can file an asbestos trust fund claim:
- Mesothelioma is an aggressive cancer that affects the mesothelium, the membrane protecting your organs. It can drastically reduce your life span and quality of life. Symptoms include loss of appetite, fever, coughing, and chest pain. For more information, read our mesothelioma guide.
- Asbestos lung cancer is lung cancer caused by asbestos exposure. Symptoms include wheezing, fatigue, coughing that does not go away, and unexpected weight loss.
- Asbestosis is a long-term lung disease caused by inhaling asbestos fibers. Caused by scarring in the lungs, symptoms include shortness of breath, a dry cough, fingertips and toes that look rounder than usual, and crackling sounds when you inhale.
Steps for Accessing Asbestos Trust Funds
If you believe you can file an asbestos trust fund claim, take the following steps to access compensation:
- Contact Bergman Oslund Udo Little: Before you do anything else, contact Bergman Oslund Udo Little’s experienced lawyers. We can listen to your story and determine whether you and your loved one are eligible to file an asbestos trust fund claim. If you are not eligible, we can match you with other types of asbestos illness financial compensation, such as Veterans Affairs benefits or lawsuits.
- Gather evidence: If you are eligible to file an asbestos trust fund claim, we can help you gather and preserve evidence, such as job descriptions revealing exposure to asbestos products, witness affidavits, product descriptions, and doctor’s asbestos illness diagnosis and treatment reports.
- File your claim: Each asbestos trust fund has its own deadline for filing claims. If you fail to follow a trust fund’s deadline, you will miss the opportunity to get compensation from that company. Our lawyers will help you file your claim ahead of relevant deadlines. Most trust funds accept claims through their websites, but some require mailing printed claims.
- Get a payout: Once the asbestos trust fund has received and processed your claim, you will receive compensation from the trust fund. Payout times vary depending on the trust, but most people receive payments within months. Unfortunately, since these companies are bankrupt the payouts are usually a small fraction of what they would pay if you could file a lawsuit against them in court.
Our Lawyers Can Help You Access Asbestos Trust Funds
Contact Bergman Oslund Udo Little’s Washington and Oregon asbestos attorneys, and let us help you get the most out of asbestos trust funds. For over 25 years, we have fought for the rights of asbestos victims throughout the Pacific Northwest and recovered more than $1 billion in compensation. Our comprehensive approach to litigation encompasses education about asbestos and related illnesses, advocacy, negotiation, and litigation.
Our compassionate lawyers have litigated hundreds of asbestos illness cases for our clients with personalized strategies that hold corporations accountable. Book a free consultation by email or at 206-984-3565.