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Answers to Common Questions about Cancer Caused by Work Exposure to Asbestos

For decades, many workers in New York have been exposed to asbestos in the workplace. It’s now clear that asbestos exposure can lead to certain types of cancer, as well as other physical maladies. This page answers many of the frequently asked about asbestos and its link to cancer.

Q: What is asbestos?

A: Asbestos is a mineral that is found in nature, and has been mined for more than 100 years. It’s primarily known for its durability and its fireproof capabilities. It’s been widely used in consumer products, in everything from roofing shingles and home insulation to cement pipes and brake linings for motor vehicles. Research has shown that when asbestos breaks down, it separates into tiny fibers, which can be ingested. When those fibers accumulate in significant numbers, they can interfere with basic body functions.

Q: How do I know if I was exposed to asbestos on the job?

A: The health risks associated with asbestos were discovered in the 60s and 70s, and banned in the late 80s, so building constructed before the late 1980s may have had asbestos. There should be records regarding whether a structure underwent asbestos removal or remediation. To determine whether you have contracted any asbestos-related disease, including cancer, you’ll want to undergo a chest X-ray. If the X-ray has a positive “B-read,” you most likely have an asbestos-related disease.

Q: What do I need to provide to successfully recover benefits for work-related exposure to asbestos?

A: To succeed with an asbestos-related injury or cancer claim, you must show that you

  • Were exposed to asbestos in the workplace
  • Have a chest X-ray with a positive B-read
  • Have a pathology report showing an asbestos-related malignancy
  • Have a letter from a board-certified physician stating the cause of your condition
  • Have affidavits confirming that you worked at an asbestos contaminated facility

Q: Can I seek workers’ compensation benefits for Asbestos-Related Cancer?

A: Yes. In New York, there are only two requirements to qualify for workers’ compensation—you must show that you were working, and that you suffered injury or illness in the course of your employment. If you can show that many of your co-workers experienced similar health problems, and incidences of similar illness were less in nearby work environments, that may be circumstantial evidence to support a workers’ compensation claim.

Effective Workers’ Compensation Attorneys in Queens, New York

At Pyrros, Serres & Rupwani, we bring more than 50 years of combined workers’ compensation experience to injured workers throughout the borough of Queens and New York City metropolitan area. We built our successful practice on a commitment to personal service and attention. As a result, many of our new cases come to us as referrals from our colleagues in the legal profession or from other clients.

We handle all types of work-related injury claims, including cases involving:

Occupational Disease or Illness | Back and Neck Injury | Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) | Fractures | Shoulder, Arm, Hand and Finger Injury | Hip, Leg, Foot and Toe Injury| Burns | Paralysis | Spinal Cord Injury | Permanent Scarring or Disfigurement | Amputation or Loss of Limb | Hearing or Vision Loss | Accidental Death

For more information about the services we provide, see our practice area overview page.

Pyrros, Serres & Rupwani

Workers’ Compensation Attorneys—Queens, New York