In Canada asbestos was used everywhere until the early 1980s. People worked with asbestos every day using thousands of different products with no protection from the danger of asbestos. Asbestos products were made by American companies and their Canadian subsidiaries for years. Some of the asbestos mines in Quebec were owned by the leading American asbestos company Johns Manville which also had a large facility in Scarborough, Ontario where asbestos was processed and workers and their families who lived on the site could not avoid inhaling asbestos fibres.
Then people learned the hidden truth that asbestos was a dangerous product and asbestos was banned from use in Canada. In Canada, Canadians can not generally sue their employers or other Canadian employers due to Workers’ Compensation laws. The US companies which made asbestos products were sued by Americans in American courts where access by Canadian Mesothelioma victims is restricted. Canadian victims have generally been limited to claiming Workers’ Compensation benefits plus any private or other health disability or life insurance they may have.
Over time more and more people developed the deadly cancer Mesothelioma which can only be caused by exposure to asbestos. It was considered a rare disease which took about 10 to 20 years to develop after the asbestos exposure. In fact, it is a very common cancer that was often misdiagnosed and it takes up to 50 years to get it after breathing in asbestos even in microscopic amounts. Those who work with asbestos and breathed it in more regularly are more likely to get Mesothelioma than those who have infrequent exposure. Family members such as spouses or children sometimes get Mesothelioma from asbestos dust brought home from a workplace. That is called secondary exposure. Some people have not to their knowledge been exposed to asbestos fibres and it can be a mystery to determine where and how a person may have developed Mesothelioma. It is also impossible to tell which asbestos exposure incident may have caused an individual to develop the disease.
Because Mesothelioma can only be caused by asbestos exposure the law in the United States has developed so that compensation can be received from multiple sources provided a person with Mesothelioma can establish that they were exposed to specific asbestos manufacturers’ products. Most asbestos manufacturers were sued into bankruptcy or corporate rearrangement where funds were set up to compensate victims of their products. Fortunately, Canadians are allowed to apply to most of these funds for compensation. The asbestos trusts are all based in the United States and pay victims in US dollars. Payment where there is exposure by the worker and also for secondary exposure is made by the asbestos trusts. This provides an alternative way to seek compensation than Workers’ Compensation which may be more beneficial to the person with the illness and their family. Workers Compensation is not available for Mesothelioma due to secondary exposure. Where a person receives benefits from Workers’ Compensation their right to claim from the US asbestos trusts is transferred to the provincial compensation board which then hires lawyers in the United States to get back money paid on related claims.
Canadians generally are not aware of their right to claim directly from the asbestos trusts. These trusts have an online claims administration process. There are a number of American law firms which regularly apply for compensation for American and sometimes Canadian clients. There is very little in the way of legal resources in Canada to help with asbestos compensation. This website is sponsored and operated by Miskin Law Offices In Canada, Miskin Law Offices directly bring claims on behalf of Canadians to the asbestos trusts on a contingency fee basis. A fee is only charged when money is recovered and it is a percentage of the recovery matching what is charged by US law firms. Clients can choose to receive American dollars or have their compensation converted to Canadian dollars. The Miskin Law Firm works nationally representing asbestos clients from coast to coast and we personally travel as needed to see clients. Murray Miskin and his staff will be pleased to speak with you about your personal situation to help you determine what compensation may be available and to help you make the right choice. Call toll free to 1-877-428-8000 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.