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Statute of Limitations

Every state and all asbestos trust funds restrict the amount of time mesothelioma and asbestos-cancer victims have to file claims against negligent asbestos manufacturers. These statutes of limitations vary by state and trust. If you miss the deadline, you miss the opportunity to recoup funds from at-fault companies.

Most states limit the time to file a mesothelioma or asbestos cancer lawsuit to between one and three years. Bankruptcy trusts typically have a statute of limitations of three years on claims. Because of this, it is important to act quickly after a mesothelioma diagnosis.

Mesothelioma and other asbestos-related diseases take decades to appear. This long latency period complicates the asbestos lawsuit process and statutes of limitations. An experienced attorney can guide you through the process of filing a lawsuit and help you avoid losing your right to compensation.

Determining Factors

When considering the amount of time a person has to file a claim, the courts consider several elements:

  • Exposure Location – The state where the company responsible for exposure is located determines the amount of time claimants have to proceed with legal action. The laws for determining a statute of limitations can vary from state to state.
  • Status of the Patient – The situation may change depending on the medical status of the patient. If the victim has passed away, family members may have to abide by different statute of limitations.
  • Date of Diagnosis – Mesothelioma patients are typically given leeway for filing a claim, beginning at the date of diagnosis instead of the date of injury used in other personal ­injury cases.

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Types of Asbestos Claims

In filing an asbestos lawsuit, plaintiffs must decide if they will file a personal injury claim (filed by the victim) or a wrongful death claim (filed by the surviving family members).

  • Personal injury claim – The countdown to filing an asbestos personal injury claim begins immediately after a diagnosis. The deadline can be up to six years following a diagnosis. However, states that include California and Tennessee limit the time to file an asbestos lawsuit to one year following a diagnosis.
  • Wrongful death claim – The countdown to filing a wrongful death lawsuit begins when the mesothelioma patient dies. Most states have similar statutory limits as they do for personal injury claims. However, states that include New York and Florida have shorter time frames to file wrongful death claims than personal injury claims. Other states, such as California, do not award damages for the patient’s pain and suffering in wrongful death claims.

Statutes of Limitations By State

Since each state had different rules as they apply to statutes of limitations, personal injury lawsuits, and wrongful death lawsuits, it is important for mesothelioma patients and their families to act quickly. The following is a chart of the various deadlines established by each state. To learn more information about filing a mesothelioma lawsuit, contact our experts today.

State Personal Injury Wrongful Death
Alabama 2 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death
Alaska 2 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death
Arizona 2 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death
Arkansas 3 Years from Diagnosis 3 Years from Death
California 1 Year from Diagnosis 1 Year from Death
Colorado 2 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death
Connecticut 3 Years from Diagnosis 3 Years from Death
Delaware 2 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death
Florida 4 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death
Georgia 2 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death
Hawaii 2 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death
Idaho 2 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death
Illinois 2 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death
Indiana 2 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death
Iowa 2 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death
Kansas 2 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death
Kentucky 1 Year from Diagnosis 1 Year from Death
Louisiana 1 Year from Diagnosis 1 Year from Death
Maine 6 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death
Maryland 3 Years from Diagnosis 3 Years from Death
Massachusetts 3 Years from Diagnosis 3 Years from Death
Michigan 3 Years from Diagnosis 3 Years from Death
Minnesota 4 Years from Diagnosis 3 Years from Death
Mississippi 3 Years from Diagnosis 3 Years from Death
Missouri 5 Years from Diagnosis 3 Years from Death
Montana 3 Years from Diagnosis 3 Years from Death
Nebraska 4 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death
Nevada 2 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death
New Hampshire 3 Years from Diagnosis 3 Years from Death
New Jersey 2 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death
New Mexico 3 Years from Diagnosis 3 Years from Death
New York 3 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death
North Carolina 3 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death
North Dakota 6 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death
Ohio 2 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death
Oklahoma 2 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death
Oregon 3 Years from Diagnosis 3 Years from Death
Pennsylvania 2 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death
Rhode Island 3 Years from Diagnosis 3 Years from Death
South Carolina 3 Years from Diagnosis 3 Years from Death
South Dakota 3 Years from Diagnosis 3 Years from Death
Tennessee 1 Year from Diagnosis 1 Year from Death
Texas 2 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death
Utah 3 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death
Vermont 3 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death
Virginia 2 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death
Washington 3 Years from Diagnosis 3 Years from Death
Washington, D.C. 3 Years from Diagnosis 1 Year from Death
West Virginia 2 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death
Wisconsin 3 Years from Diagnosis 3 Years from Death
Wyoming 4 Years from Diagnosis 2 Years from Death

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