My loved one is very ill. What happens if he or she dies before the asbestos lawsuit is resolved?

Mesothelioma, the cancer some people develop after being exposed to asbestos, is extremely aggressive. Once a person develops it, their health typically deteriorates very quickly. Sometimes, this means that a person may pass away while they are in the middle of their personal injury case.

When this happens, any compensation awarded will go to the estate, and not the estate representative. The awards are then divided a number of ways depending on whether the deceased had a will or if the proceeds of the estate are distributed according to intestacy rules.

Family members who wish to continue on with a claim after the plaintiff passes away may find it more difficult to secure compensation. This is because the history of asbestos exposure is often more difficult to prove, and the original plaintiff can no longer attest to their physical condition through a deposition, affidavit, or during trial while under oath. Witnesses and evidence may also become more difficult to find once an individual passes away due to asbestos exposure. For these reasons, anyone wishing to continue on with a lawsuit after their loved one passes away should speak to a Massachusetts asbestos lawyer who can successfully address these challenges.