To say that asbestos exposure has changed your life would be an understatement. Now, it’s time to meet with a California mesothelioma lawyer who can help you take back control of your future.
Were you or a loved one diagnosed with mesothelioma? Frost Law Firm, PC can offer you a free legal consultation. We handle complex asbestos cases at our California mesothelioma law firm. Our team of attorneys has combined decades of success helping mesothelioma patients recover compensation for medical treatment, travel expenses, pain and suffering, and more.
Contact Frost Law Firm, PC today to get in touch with one of our experienced and compassionate California mesothelioma lawyers.
Why Choose Frost Law Firm, PC’s California Mesothelioma Lawyers?
We are mesothelioma trial lawyers with a track record of effective asbestos litigation. And unlike other law firms, we have experienced the personal tragedy of losing loved ones to asbestos-related illnesses.
As the son of a Southern California construction laborer and contractor diagnosed with asbestos-related lung cancer, Founding Attorney Scott L. Frost lives a daily commitment to helping families affected by asbestos diseases. Because he and others on our team have personally witnessed the devastation asbestos exposure can cause, we have dedicated ourselves to fighting harder than the rest for the rights of mesothelioma victims.
Your California mesothelioma attorneys from Frost Law Firm, PC are:
- Compassionate victims’ rights advocates with personal experience losing family members to asbestos-related diseases
- Highly experienced in even the most complex mesothelioma cases
- Respected and well connected to the medical and legal resources you need in multiple cities across the state of California including San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Jose, San Diego, and more
- Known for recovering multi-million-dollar verdicts and settlements on behalf of clients—read more about our results here
- Well-versed on the latest federal and state asbestos laws and emerging developments in the field of mesothelioma litigation
Don’t wait to learn how you can begin moving forward after your mesothelioma diagnosis.
Simply call or contact us online, and we’ll pair you with an experienced California mesothelioma lawyer who will answer all your questions at no cost or obligation to you.
What’s the Link Between Asbestos Exposure and Mesothelioma?
Malignant mesothelioma is a cancer that can develop in the thin lining (mesothelium) of several organs in the body. It most commonly forms in the lining of the lungs, but can also appear in the heart, abdomen, or testes.
There is only one known cause of mesothelioma: exposure to asbestos fibers.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), California Air Resources Board (CARB), and many other state and federal agencies recognize asbestos exposure as a severe threat to human health. Exposure to asbestos through inhalation or ingestion has been proven to cause a number of fatal illnesses, most notably mesothelioma cancer.
Filing a California Mesothelioma Claim
If you or someone you love was diagnosed with mesothelioma or another illness caused by exposure to asbestos, you have legal options.
Most people who were exposed and became ill were victims of corporate negligence. Countless companies produced, manufactured, and distributed products with a known carcinogen, leading to the illness and death of thousands of workers, consumers, and other individuals who did not know the risk they faced.
At Frost Law Firm, PC, our California mesothelioma lawyers advocate for victims and families facing an uncertain future. We can help you recover the financial compensation you need, deserve, and are entitled to by law.
Our attorneys can represent you in filing a mesothelioma lawsuit, asbestos claim, or other type of legal action in:
- Los Angeles
- San Diego
- San Jose
- San Francisco
- Orange County
- Long Beach
- Santa Ana
- San Bernardino
- And elsewhere in California
California’s Troubled History of Asbestos Contamination
Mesothelioma has killed more people in California than anywhere else in the nation.
Between 2001 and 2010, California suffered 2,637 mesothelioma deaths. That number was substantially higher than even the second-highest-ranking state, Florida, which saw 1,713 deaths during the same time period.
Asbestos use peaked in the 1970s, with 800,000 metric tons of asbestos produced in or imported to the United States in 1973. Exposure was a problem across the nation, but nowhere more than in California.
As the state with:
- The third longest coastline in the nation,
- A booming shipping and import industry,
- A strong population of military bases,
- A film industry heavily reliant on asbestos products,
- A rich maritime history, and
- Naturally-occurring asbestos being mined across the state,
California was hit harder than most other parts of the U.S. when it came to asbestos exposure.
When prolific Hollywood actor Steve McQueen was diagnosed with pleural mesothelioma soon before his death in 1980, he recalled in an interview multiple instances of asbestos exposure in his lifetime—scraping it from pipes while serving in the Marine Corps, being surrounded by movie sound stage insulation made from asbestos, and wearing fire-resistant asbestos protective gear while driving on the California race car and stunt driving circuit.
His story is not an isolated one. Like thousands of others, it demonstrates just how vital asbestos use was to so many industries that have made California what it is today. Now, the mesothelioma attorneys at our law office sponsor awareness events like The Greatest Escape Motorcycle Ride, a charity ride created in McQueen’s honor to raise funds for mesothelioma cancer research.
Where Were People Exposed to Asbestos in California?
There are far more California asbestos exposure sites than many people realize. Asbestos was used in almost all buildings built before the 1980s, and was used prevalently in multiple industries integral to California’s economy over the last 100+ years.
Much of the heavy asbestos use was in shipyards along our coastline, such as:
- Western Pipe and Steel Company (San Francisco)
- Los Angeles Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Company (Los Angeles Harbor)
- Todd Pacific Shipyards (multiple locations)
- Permanente Metals Corporation Richmond Shipyards (Richmond)
- Bethlehem Shipyard (San Francisco)
It was also found in factories and refineries like:
- Richfield Oil Corporation (Northern California), later Atlantic Richfield Company (ARCO)
- Solana Iron Works (now Baker Iron Works, Solana Beach)
- Kaiser Aluminum (Riverside County)
- Lockheed Corporation (Burbank)
- Western Mine & Dunn Mill (San Bernardino County)
- Texaco refinery (Wilmington)
- South Gate Assembly General Motors automobile plant (South Gate)
- Procter & Gamble plant (Long Beach)
And most of California’s structures were built at a time when asbestos use was prevalent:
- Homes and apartment buildings
- Schools, including most University of California and California State University campuses, Stanford University, and the University of Southern California
- Office buildings
- Airports, including Los Angeles International Airport and San Francisco International Airport
- Hospitals, including Martin Luther King Jr. Community Hospital (Willowbrook) and several Naval Hospitals
- Film studios, including 20th Century Fox (now 20th Century Studios)
California is also home to a high percentage of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Superfund sites.
California Asbestos Superfund Sites
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has designated thousands of sites across the country as “Superfund” sites. These are sites at which hazardous waste was “dumped, left out in the open, or otherwise improperly managed,” requiring the EPA to step in and mitigate the harm being caused to humans and the environment. Manufacturing facilities, processing plants, landfills, military bases, shipyards, and mining sites in California have been named as asbestos Superfund sites.
The Silicon Valley area in particular was identified as mismanaging high levels of asbestos and other toxic substances. Santa Clara County is home to 23 Superfund sites, more than any other U.S. county. Of those sites, 19 were contaminated by major tech firms operating during the mid-to-latter half of the 20th century.
Other sites across California were also identified as major contributors to our state’s high rates of mesothelioma and other related illnesses.
Among California’s Superfund sites linked to asbestos contamination are:
- Atlas Asbestos Mine (near Fresno County, northwest of Coalinga)
- Castle Air Force Base (Merced County)
- Fairchild Semiconductor (Mountain View, San Jose)
- Concord Naval Weapons Station (north of Concord on the Sacramento River)
- Hunters Point Naval Shipyard (San Francisco)
- Synertek, Inc. (Santa Clara)
- Watkins-Johnson Company (Palo Alto)
- Coalinga Asbestos Mine (Coalinga)
- Casmalia Resources Hazardous Waste Landfill (near Casmalia)
- Edwards Air Force Base (Kern, San Bernardino, and Los Angeles Counties)
- Hewlett-Packard (Palo Alto)
- March Air Reserve Base (Riverside County)
- Fort Ord (Monterey Bay)
- Halaco Engineering Co. (Oxnard)
- Intel Corporation (Mountain View)
- Riverbank Army Ammunition Plant (Stanislaus County)
- Marine Corps Air Station El Toro (near Irvine)
- Moffett Federal Airfield (Santa Clara County)
- Lorentz Barrel & Drum Co. (San Jose)
- Raytheon Company (Mountain View)
- Southern California Edison (Rosemead, throughout Southern California)
- Marine Corps Logistics Base Barstow (east of Barstow, Mojave Desert)
- Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton (San Diego County)
- Fresno Municipal Sanitary Landfill (Fresno)
- Stringfellow Acid Pits (Jurupa Valley)
- Norton Air Force Base (San Bernardino County)
- McClellan Air Force Base (Sacramento County)
- Naval Air Station Alameda (Alameda)
- Sacramento Army Depot (Sacramento)
- Lockheed Martin Corporation (San Fernando Valley)
- Rockwell International (Simi Valley)
- South Bay Asbestos Area (three former landfills covering 550 acres in the Alviso district of San Jose)
The California Asbestos Mining Industry
There are over 300 known asbestos mines, prospects, and occurrences in California, according to the United States Geological Survey (USGS). The majority of naturally-occurring asbestos is found in Trinity, San Benito, Nevada, San Bernardino, Calaveras, Fresno, Lake, Shasta, Placer, Riverside, and Siskiyou Counties.
Asbestos has not been mined in the U.S. since 2002, although importing asbestos products from abroad has not been banned. The King City Asbestos Company (KCAC) mine, located in the Coalinga asbestos district of San Benito County and Fresno County, was the last known U.S. asbestos mine in operation.
Naturally-occurring asbestos continues to be disturbed in a number of different ways in California, even when not being intentionally mined. In 2017, in one example, repair work to the damaged Oroville Lake Dam in Butte County released asbestos from nearby rock formations into the air, requiring an immediate response from California air quality control officials.
Below is a list of a few of the named asbestos mines and prospects in California:
- Atlas Asbestos Mine (Superfund site)
- Coalinga Asbestos Mine (Superfund site)
- John D. Hoff Mine
- George Thomas Prospect
- Burro Mountain Asbestos Prospect
- Neugebauer Mine
- Pacific Asbestos Mine
- New Idria Mine
- Union Carbide Nuclear Company Asbestos Mine
- White Cloud Amphibole-Asbestos Asbestos Site
- Third Chance Asbestos Mines
- Shasta View Prospect
- Cady Asbestos Prospect
California Workers Facing the Highest Risk of Exposure to Asbestos
From film sets in Los Angeles to shipyards in San Francisco, military bases in San Diego, and tech plants in Silicon Valley, California residents have been subjected to asbestos inhalation and ingestion in numerous ways. You or your loved one may have developed mesothelioma after spending time in a factory, naval shipyard, asbestos mine, or even an older home, educational facility, or office building.
California workers in these roles face an increased likelihood of receiving a mesothelioma diagnosis in their lifetime.
- Construction workers
- Factory workers
- Building inspectors
- Auto mechanics
- Airplane mechanics
- Custodial workers
- Power plant employees
- Chemical plant employees
- HVAC mechanics
- Shipyard workers
- Steel mill workers
- Demolition crew members
- Asbestos abatement workers
- Machine operators
- Employees on film sets
- Railroad workers
- Textile mill workers
- Industrial workers
- Theater ushers
- U.S. Merchant Marine sailors
- Members of the U.S. military, especially Army and Navy veterans who served pre-1980s
Legal Options for California Mesothelioma Patients: Know Your Rights
California law gives mesothelioma patients several different options for pursuing compensation for medical bills and other expenses. If you or a loved one was exposed to asbestos and later developed mesothelioma, an asbestos lawyer from Frost Law Firm, PC can help you review your legal rights based on your circumstances.
Don’t wait—speak with a California mesothelioma lawyer to discuss the best course of action for you and your family. We can evaluate your case for free and advise you of your best options for full and fair financial compensation.
Here are a few of the most common ways mesothelioma clients pursue justice after asbestos exposure:
- Mesothelioma asbestos lawsuits
- Asbestos trust funds
- VA benefits
- Workers’ compensation benefits
- Wrongful death lawsuits
As asbestos attorneys, we help clients file lawsuits against parties responsible for recklessly exposing innocent people to deadly carcinogens.
We have handled asbestos lawsuits filed against negligent employers, personal injury lawsuits filed against property owners, and mesothelioma lawsuits filed against companies that failed to warn or protect against asbestos exposure in the home or workplace. We have even helped clients who suffered secondary asbestos exposure recover justice after they unknowingly inhaled toxic fibers brought home on a family member’s clothing or released into the air by a neighboring mine, plant, factory, or other industrial facility.
There are several parties that could be found liable in a mesothelioma case. Most commonly, defendants in these types of cases are:
- Employers or former employers
- Manufacturing companies
- Property owners
- Mining companies
- Asbestos companies
- Or other negligent entities
We have secured multi-million-dollar California mesothelioma settlements and verdicts for our clients, and we’ve proven we have what it takes to do the same for you. Our specialized knowledge and experience as trial lawyers in California courts have given us an edge that many other law firms don’t have.
Learn if you’re eligible to file a mesothelioma lawsuit during a free consultation with one of the attorneys from our award-winning national law firm.
Asbestos Trust Funds
As an asbestos victim, you may also be entitled to compensation through an asbestos trust fund.
There are more than 100 U.S. companies that have gone bankrupt following the discovery of asbestos in their products and ensuing lawsuits. Asbestos trust funds were set up by these bankrupt companies that once manufactured or sold asbestos-containing products or materials.
Asbestos funds are designed to set money aside for victims of the company’s negligence. Eligible individuals who developed mesothelioma because of the actions of these companies can file a claim to obtain compensation through an established fund.
Many of these trust funds contain tens or hundreds of millions of dollars available for qualified claimants. Below are just a few of the major asbestos trust funds with ties in the state of California. However, many of the products manufactured by asbestos companies traveled across the country and around the world. As a California resident, your asbestos exposure may not have necessarily been caused by a California-based corporation or factory site.
- J. T. Thorpe Settlement Trust (California-based)
- Thorpe Insulation Settlement Trust (Nevada-based, covering work done by Thorpe Insulation at Southern California oil refineries, power plants, and other industrial sites)
- Western Asbestos Settlement Trust (established through an order of the United States Bankruptcy Court, Northern District of California, Oakland Division)
- Kaiser Asbestos Trust (founded by the aluminum and chemical company whose asbestos-containing products were manufactured in factories across the U.S., including California)
Depending on how you were exposed to asbestos, you may be eligible to file a claim with one or more of these trust funds, or others. Speak with a California mesothelioma attorney on our team to learn more.
Asbestos victims who were exposed at a base, naval shipyard, or elsewhere during military service may be eligible for benefits from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). In order to qualify for VA compensation, you must first meet the two basic criteria of a) having a health condition caused by exposure to asbestos, and b) having had contact with asbestos while serving in the military.
Filing for VA benefits involves submitting documents such as private and VA medical records and service records, filling out disability claims forms, and gathering supporting evidence to link your asbestos exposure with your mesothelioma diagnosis and prove the level of disability you are now experiencing as a result.
The VA may require you to show statements from family, friends, coworkers, clergy, or others who know about the effect of your illness on your life. In some cases, you may need to file additional forms to support your disability claim.
This can be an intensive and time-consuming process for a mesothelioma patient to handle on their own. At Frost Law Firm, PC we have a military background and years of experience helping veterans secure the benefits they need. If you were exposed to asbestos through your military service, we have the resources to help you obtain compensation through all the legal paths available to you.
Workers’ Compensation Benefits
In some cases, a worker who developed an occupational illness after being exposed to asbestos on the job may be entitled to file for workers’ comp benefits with an employer’s insurance carrier. We can help clients navigate this process within all mandatory deadlines.
Keep in mind that workers’ compensation benefits are typically only available for current employees, although surviving family members may be entitled to death benefits if a worker lost their life to a job-related illness. Additionally, workers’ compensation benefits may cover a portion of financial losses like missed wages and medical bills, but not noneconomic losses like pain and suffering.
Wrongful Death Lawsuits
If your spouse, parent, partner, or other close family member died of an asbestos-related disease, you may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit on their behalf. We can evaluate your case for free to determine if you are eligible to recover compensation for funeral and burial costs, lost financial support, and more.
While a wrongful death lawsuit is one of the most difficult types of cases we handle at Frost Law Firm, PC, we understand how important it can be to a family’s recovery. This is often the only step that can help a family regain financial stability, bring justice to a tragic situation, and hold a negligent party accountable for their actions—preventing countless incidences of future harm in the process.
Current California Asbestos Regulations
There are a number of California laws regulating asbestos use, abatement, and disposal within the state. In addition to California asbestos laws, government agencies like the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) have also created a network of federal asbestos regulations that individuals, corporations, and employers must follow.
Due to its traditional prevalence in building materials, asbestos regulation in construction is an important part of asbestos legislation. The California Department of Industrial Relations has established a series of Construction Safety Orders that coexists alongside criteria set by OSHA’s Asbestos Standard for the Construction Industry.
The California Department of Industrial Relations also requires Registration of Asbestos-Related Work (that may release asbestos fibers into the air) and sets certification requirements and standards for asbestos consultants, surveillance technicians, and other professionals in asbestos abatement.
The Asbestos National Emissions Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP) created by California Health and Safety Code section 39658(b)(1), overseen by the California Air Resources Board (CARB), further works to protect “the public and environment by minimizing the release of asbestos fibers during renovation and demolition activities.”
These are just a few of the state laws governing the use of asbestos in California. You can rest assured knowing that it’s not your responsibility to memorize and understand all federal and state asbestos laws related to your case.
Your California mesothelioma lawyer from Frost Law Firm, PC will be fully aware of all relevant legislation and the rights it affords you. Our mesothelioma clients benefit from the legal expertise and deep understanding of California and federal asbestos regulations we possess.
How Many Products and Materials Contain Asbestos?
There are thousands of products used every day in California that contain asbestos. Although no longer mined in the U.S., asbestos is still imported in materials and products from other countries. And the thousands of asbestos-containing products and materials our culture was built upon have certainly not been erased from society.
Asbestos may be present in:
- Brake pads
- Roofing materials
- Flooring materials
- Paper products
- Clutch and transmission parts
- Heat-resistant materials
- And more
What To Do if You Have Asbestos in Your Home in California
California residents should be aware that any home renovation or demolition project may expose you and others to dangerous levels of asbestos. If you believe you may be disturbing toxic materials in your home, reach out to a California-certified asbestos abatement professional.
The California Department of Public Health advises individuals that asbestos determinations “can only be made using instrumental analysis.” In other words, the only way to know for sure is to have a professional asbestos abatement expert test it.
If you think it might be asbestos, it probably is.
Asbestos Abatement Professionals in California
The State of California Department of Industrial Relations keeps an up-to-date asbestos registrants’ database where you can find the names and contact information for asbestos contractors and other professionals registered with the Asbestos Contractors’ Registration Unit.
This resource can help you identify an abatement professional to help you safely complete your home, business, or other construction or demolition project.
How Many Asbestos-Related Diseases Come From Exposure to Asbestos Fibers?
Mesothelioma is the most well-known asbestos-related illness. But it is not the only one.
According to the American Cancer Society, these diseases have been linked to exposure to asbestos fibers, either inhaled or ingested.
- Pleural mesothelioma affecting the lining of the lungs (pleura)
- Pleural plaques and pleural thickening
- Pleural effusion (fluid buildup between the lungs and pleura)
- Other types of asbestos-related lung cancer
- Peritoneal mesothelioma affecting the abdomen
- Pericardial mesothelioma affecting the lining of the heart
- Testicular mesothelioma
- Ovarian cancer
- Cancer of the larynx
- Asbestosis (lung damage caused by asbestos exposure)
Mesothelioma Treatment Options
The mesothelioma treatment options available to a patient depend heavily on when the illness is diagnosed, the stage of the cancer (how far it has progressed), and the patient’s overall health condition, among other factors.
Because mesothelioma takes so long to develop and manifest symptoms, it is difficult to catch in the early stages. There may be 10 to 50 years between exposure and diagnosis. This often leaves patients with only the option of palliative care to make them more comfortable in the late stages of the disease.
However, there are treatments that can be effective at early stages and under certain conditions. It is important to discuss all treatment options in detail with your mesothelioma care team.
Mesothelioma treatments may include:
- Different types of surgery, depending on location and progression
- Radiation therapy
- Targeted therapy
- Pain management techniques
- Palliative care
- Clinical trials
Mesothelioma Treatment Facilities in California
We are fortunate here in California to have some of the best cancer treatment centers in the nation, as well as some of the leading researchers and practitioners in the field of mesothelioma treatment. Institutions like Stanford Cancer Institute, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, UCLA Medical Center, and many, many others provide top-quality mesothelioma and lung cancer care.
While our focus at Frost Law Firm, PC is asbestos litigation, we have strong connections in the California medical community and can help direct you toward the resources you need. Please bring any questions you have to your free consultation with a California mesothelioma lawyer on our team.
California Mesothelioma Lawsuit FAQs
Below are a few frequently asked questions about filing a mesothelioma lawsuit or claim. Please feel free to reach out to our California mesothelioma lawyers with questions of your own.
How much does it cost to hire a California mesothelioma lawyer?
Different law firms handle fees differently.
Frost Law Firm, PC offers free consultations and does not take attorney’s fees until after we’ve won your case. This is called a contingency fee model, or “no win no fee” payment structure. Our cost is taken as a percentage of your total award amount, which will be agreed upon before we take your case.
When researching law firms, make sure to ask how attorneys take their fees before agreeing to partner with them.
How much compensation can I get through a mesothelioma claim?
The amount of compensation you receive should be equivalent to all that you’ve lost because of your diagnosis. This should include both economic losses (like medical bills) and noneconomic losses (like loss of enjoyment of life).
We as your mesothelioma attorneys will take the time to fully calculate all that you deserve to recover.
Because the losses associated with a cancer like mesothelioma are so substantial, we often find that our clients are entitled to settlements and benefits that reach into the millions.
What can compensation from asbestos claims be used for?
Different types of mesothelioma claims can be used to compensate for different losses. For example, workers’ compensation only covers economic losses like medical bills and lost wages. Mesothelioma lawsuits, on the other hand, usually allow you to also recover noneconomic damages like pain and suffering.
Your mesothelioma attorney will assess your needs and help you identify the best way to recover all your damages, such as:
- Medical expenses
- Travel costs
- Out-of-pocket expenses
- Cost of moving homes or moving to a care facility
- Domestic services like in-home care and cleaning
- Pain and suffering
- Lost income
- Diminished quality of life
How do I know where I was exposed to asbestos?
Many people know they were exposed at work, but not all. Living in an older home, attending school in a building that used asbestos materials, residing near a mine or factory, using asbestos-laden products, or spending time at a naval shipyard can cause you to unknowingly inhale or ingest asbestos fibers.
Part of our job as your California mesothelioma lawyers is to investigate your case—as far back as we need to. We examine deeds, employment and education records, company documents, and more to identify the source of your exposure and conclusively link your illness to it.
Even if you don’t know how you developed mesothelioma, we can help you find answers. And we’ll help you hold the at-fault party accountable.
How long do California mesothelioma lawsuits usually take?
It is always difficult to assign a timeline to personal injury lawsuits, and mesothelioma cases are no exception. Due to the heavily individual nature of each case, we can’t state with certainty how long your mesothelioma case will take. It may be a few months or more than a year.
Contact us to provide more details about the specifics of your case, and we will be able to give you a better idea of how long your case may take.
Contact a California Mesothelioma Attorney Who Will Put You First
It is our unwavering commitment to put you and your family first in everything that we do.
We know what you’re going through, and we want to help. We can begin the conversation today. Use our online contact form or phone number to schedule a free consultation with an experienced mesothelioma lawyer.
There is no fee and no obligation to meet with our personal injury law office. We want to equip you with the knowledge to make the right decision for you.