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Mesothelioma Statute of Limitations

The mesothelioma statute of limitations refers to the duration within which a person can take legal action for mesothelioma or any other asbestos-related ailment. The time limit can range from one year to six years, depending on the state of residence. Typically, the period starts from the date of diagnosis for personal injury claims, and from the date of death in wrongful death suits.

Fact-Checked and Updated by: Laura Wright

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What Is a Mesothelioma Statute of Limitations?

A statute of limitations is a law that sets a time limit on how long a person has to take legal action and file a claim. Statutes of limitations vary by state and by the type of claim.

In most personal injury cases, the clock starts ticking on the date of the accident or injury. However, something known as the “discovery rule” applies because of the unique nature of asbestos cases.

Mesothelioma and other asbestos-related diseases like asbestosis and lung cancer have a latency period of 10-50 years. As a result, asbestos victims may not show symptoms — or even know they were exposed to asbestos — until decades later.

The discovery rule allows the mesothelioma statute of limitations to start running on the date of your diagnosis instead of the date you were exposed to asbestos.

In mesothelioma wrongful death cases, the deadline usually starts on the date of the victim’s death.

Mesothelioma Statute of Limitations Quick Facts
  • There are different statutes of limitations for personal injury and wrongful death claims stemming from asbestos-related diseases.
  • In most states, the mesothelioma statute of limitations for personal injury claims ranges between 2-3 years, but they can be as short as 1 year or as long as 6 years.
  • If the mesothelioma statute of limitations has expired in your state, you may be able to file a claim in another state or access compensation from asbestos trust funds.

Need help filing a mesothelioma claim before you run out of time? Connect with our partner law firm for a free case evaluation.

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How Long Do I Have to File a Mesothelioma Claim?

It depends on the facts of your case. The statute of limitations on mesothelioma claims differs from state to state and based on the type of lawsuit you’re filing.

There are two main types of mesothelioma lawsuits:

  • Mesothelioma personal injury lawsuit: This type of suit is filed by a person diagnosed with mesothelioma or another asbestos-related disease and is still living.
  • Mesothelioma wrongful death lawsuit: This type of suit is filed by estate representatives — usually family members like a spouse or adult child — after a loved one has passed away from mesothelioma.

The statutes of limitations for mesothelioma wrongful death lawsuits are the same or shorter than those for personal injury claims.

Mesothelioma Lawsuit Statute of Limitations by State

The statute of limitations on mesothelioma claims varies based on each state’s laws and the case’s specifics. As noted above, separate mesothelioma statutes of limitations exist for personal injury lawsuits and wrongful death claims.

To find out your state’s mesothelioma lawsuit statute of limitations, use the drop-down menu below.

Mesothelioma Statute of Limitations by State
  • Alabama
  • Alaska
  • Arizona
  • Arkansas
  • California
  • Colorado
  • Connecticut
  • Delaware
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Hawaii
  • Idaho
  • Illinois
  • Indiana
  • Iowa
  • Kansas
  • Kentucky
  • Louisiana
  • Maine
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan
  • Minnesota
  • Mississippi
  • Missouri
  • Montana
  • Nebraska
  • Nevada
  • New Hampshire
  • New Jersey
  • New Mexico
  • New York
  • North Carolina
  • North Dakota
  • Ohio
  • Oklahoma
  • Oregon
  • Pennsylvania
  • Rhode Island
  • South Carolina
  • South Dakota
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Utah
  • Vermont
  • Virginia
  • Washington
  • Washington, D.C.
  • West Virginia
  • Wisconsin
  • Wyoming

Alabama Flag Alabama *2 years

Recent Alabama Settlement Amounts
  • $5.1 million - HazMat technician & computer programmer
  • $4.2 million - Coal miner & lathe operator
  • $2.7 million - Bus driver and brake mechanic

Alaska Flag Alaska *2 years

Recent Alaska Settlement Amounts
  • $2 million - U.S. Army veteran
  • $1.16 million - Union carpenter & millwright
  • $1 million - Victim of secondhand asbestos exposure

Arizona Flag Arizona *2 years

Recent Arizona Settlement Amounts
  • $4.3 million - Truck driver
  • $4.1 million - U.S Army Veteran & welder
  • $3.86 million - U.S. Air Force veteran and union electrician

Arkansas Flag Arkansas *3 years

Recent Arkansas Settlement Amounts
  • $7.1 million - Union insulator & decking worker
  • $4.38 million - Contractor & laborer
  • $2.49 million - U.S. Air Force veteran & engineer

California Flag California *1 year

Recent California Settlement Amounts
  • $7.5 million - Brick tender and laborer
  • $5.1 million - Union HVAC worker
  • $3 million - U.S. Navy veteran & telephone technician

Colorado Flag Colorado *2 years

Recent Colorado Settlement Amounts
  • $5.27 million - Carpenter & laborer
  • $3.9 million - U.S. Air Force veteran
  • $2.98 million - Laborer & mechanic

Connecticut Flag Connecticut *3 years

Recent Connecticut Settlement Amounts
  • $3.72 million - Maintenance mechanic
  • $2.18 million - U.S. Navy deckhand & electrician’s mate
  • $1.92 million - Critical parts inspector

Dallas Flag Dallas

The average mesothelioma settlement awards around $1 million.

Delaware Flag Delaware *2 years

Recent Delaware Settlement Amounts
  • $3.15 million - Boilerman
  • $2.86 million - Factory worker
  • $2.56 million - Boatswain’s mate & shipwright

Florida Flag Florida *2 years

Recent Florida Settlement Amounts
  • $8 million - Auto mechanic
  • $5.7 million - Contractor & engineman
  • $5.2 million - U.S. Air Force veteran & roofer

Georgia Flag Georgia *2 years

Recent Georgia Settlement Amounts
  • $4.2 million - Marine mechanic
  • $4 million - Plumber & HVAC technician
  • $3.7 million - Quality control worker

Hawaii Flag Hawaii *2 years

Recent Hawaii Settlement Amounts
  • $ -

Houston Flag Houston

The average mesothelioma settlement awards around $1 million.

Idaho Flag Idaho *2 years

Recent Idaho Settlement Amounts
  • $3.37 million - Mechanic & parts manager
  • $3 million - Service station worker
  • $2.5 million - Sheet metal worker

Illinois Flag Illinois *2 years

Recent Illinois Settlement Amounts
  • $6.7 million - Union electrician
  • $5.3 million - U.S. Navy veteran & boiler tender
  • $4.9 million - Union auto worker

Indiana Flag Indiana *2 years

Recent Indiana Settlement Amounts
  • $6.13 million - Sheet metal worker
  • $5.1 million - Insulator
  • $4.41 million - Bricklayer and mechanic

Iowa Flag Iowa *2 years

Recent Iowa Settlement Amounts
  • $6.37 million - Asbestos mixer
  • $4.83 million - U.S. Navy Veteran & machinist mate
  • $3.99 million - Electrician

Jacksonville Flag Jacksonville

The average mesothelioma settlement awards around $1 million.

Kansas Flag Kansas *2 years

Recent Kansas Settlement Amounts
  • $4.68 million - Electrician
  • $3.35 million - Maintenance worker
  • $2.95 million - Construction worker & groundskeeper

Kentucky Flag Kentucky *1 year

Recent Kentucky Settlement Amounts
  • $4.69 million - Steel worker
  • $4.23 million - Assembly line worker
  • $3.73 million - Boiler tender

Louisiana Flag Louisiana *1 year

Recent Louisiana Settlement Amounts
  • $6.5 million - Tack welder & derrickhand
  • $5.3 million - Boiler tender & insurance surveyor
  • $4.9 million - U.S. Navy veteran & carpenter

Maine Flag Maine *6 years

Recent Maine Settlement Amounts
  • $7.78 million - Marine engineer
  • $3.5 million - Paper company worker
  • $2.77 million - U.S. veteran & equipment operator

Maryland Flag Maryland *3 years

Recent Maryland Settlement Amounts
  • $5.3 mllion - U.S. Army veteran & mechanic
  • $3.2 million - Retail worker
  • $2.9. million - Victim of secondhand asbestos exposure

Massachusetts Flag Massachusetts *3 years

Recent Massachusetts Settlement Amounts
  • $5.72 million - Engineer
  • $4 million - U.S. Navy veteran
  • $3.67 million - Factory worker

Michigan Flag Michigan *3 years

Recent Michigan Settlement Amounts
  • $4.98 million - Welder
  • $3.7 million - Contractor
  • $2.8 million - U.S. Army veteran & communication worker

Minneapolis Flag Minneapolis

The average mesothelioma settlement awards around $1 million.

Minnesota Flag Minnesota *2 years

Recent Minnesota Settlement Amounts
  • $6.92 million - Victim of secondhand asbestos exposure
  • $5.2 million - Auto mechanic & millwright
  • $4.48 million - U.S. Air Force veteran

Mississippi Flag Mississippi *3 years

Recent Mississippi Settlement Amounts
  • $5.26 million - Laborer
  • $3.7 million - Mechanic
  • $2.96 million - U.S. Navy veteran

Missouri Flag Missouri *5 years

Recent Missouri Settlement Amounts
  • $14.8 million - Roofer & laborer
  • $10 million - Insulator
  • $6.8 million - U.S. Navy veteran & machinist

Montana Flag Montana *3 years

Recent Montana Settlement Amounts
  • $5.33 million - Ranch helper
  • $3.27 million - Carpenter & mill worker
  • $2.5 million - U.S. Navy veteran

Nebraska Flag Nebraska *4 years

Recent Nebraska Settlement Amounts
  • $3.11 million - Factory worker
  • $2.19 million - Carpenter & fireman
  • $1.74 million - U.S. Marine Corps veteran

Nevada Flag Nevada *2 years

Recent Nevada Settlement Amounts
  • $3.37 million - Construction worker
  • $3.35 million - U.S. Air Force veteran & aircraft mechanic
  • $2.98 million - Power plant worker

New Hampshire Flag New Hampshire *3 years

Recent New Hampshire Settlement Amounts
  • $2.5 million - Laborer
  • $2 million - Electrician
  • $1.57 million - Auto body worker

New Jersey Flag New Jersey *2 years

Recent New Jersey Settlement Amounts
  • $2.9 million - Union electrician
  • $2.1 million - Carpenter
  • $1.75 million - U.S. Navy veteran & engineer

New Mexico Flag New Mexico *3 years

Recent New Mexico Settlement Amounts
  • $3.21 million - Mechanic
  • $2.49 million - Truck driver & U.S. Army veteran
  • $1.9 million - Secondhand exposure victim

New York Flag New York *3 years

Recent New York Settlement Amounts
  • $4.6 million - Welder
  • $3.5 million - U.S. Army veteran & janitor
  • $3.18 million - Home remodeler

North Carolina Flag North Carolina *3 years

Recent North Carolina Settlement Amounts
  • $4.59 million - Electric company worker
  • $3.2 million - Engineer
  • $2.29 million - U.S. Army veteran & repairman

North Dakota Flag North Dakota *6 years

Recent North Dakota Settlement Amounts
  • $2.46 million - Union plumber
  • $1.57 million - Drywaller
  • $2.22 million - U.S. Army veteran & carpenter

Ohio Flag Ohio *2 years

Recent Ohio Settlement Amounts
  • $2.9 million - Sheet metal worker
  • $3.16 million - U.S. Navy veteran & machine operator
  • $2.57 million - Plasterer

Oklahoma Flag Oklahoma *2 years

Recent Oklahoma Settlement Amounts
  • $3 million - Oil company worker
  • $2.4 million - Boilermaker
  • $3.11 million - Hair salon worker

Oregon Flag Oregon *2 years

Recent Oregon Settlement Amounts
  • $2.5 million - U.S. Navy veteran & insulator
  • $1.6 million - Boat captain & brakeman
  • $1.71 million - Concrete worker

Pennsylvania Flag Pennsylvania *2 years

Recent Pennsylvania Settlement Amounts
  • $3.3 million - Office worker
  • $2.19 million - U.S. Navy veteran & bricklayer
  • $2.3 million - Painter & Merchant Mariner

Rhode Island Flag Rhode Island *3 years

Recent Rhode Island Settlement Amounts
  • $1.54 million - Boiler tender & U.S. Navy veteran
  • $1.37 million - Concrete worker
  • $1.12 million - Union insulator

San Diego Flag San Diego

The average mesothelioma settlement awards around $1 million.

South Carolina Flag South Carolina *3 years

Recent South Carolina Settlement Amounts
  • $2.76 million - Ironworker
  • $1.87 million - Chemical plant worker
  • $1.98 million - Naval officer

South Dakota Flag South Dakota *3 years

Recent South Dakota Settlement Amounts
  • $2.26 million - Infantry officer in the U.S. Army
  • $1.35 million - Railroad worker
  • $1.84 million - Telephone lineman and splicer

Tennessee Flag Tennessee *1 year

Recent Tennessee Settlement Amounts
  • $2.8 million - Boiler tester and lab worker
  • $3 million - U.S. Navy veteran & auto mechanic
  • $3.37 million - Nursing home assistant

Texas Flag Texas *2 years

Recent Texas Settlement Amounts
  • $4.2 million - Steelworker & construction worker
  • $3.62 million - Pipefitter
  • $1.76 million - U.S. Army veteran & longshoreman

Utah Flag Utah *4 years

Recent Utah Settlement Amounts
  • $1.55 million - U.S. Navy veteran & electrical repairman
  • $2.27 million - Water treatment plant worker
  • $1.68 million - Mining worker

Vermont Flag Vermont *3 years

Recent Vermont Settlement Amounts
  • $1.31 million - Engineer
  • $1 million - Inventory specialist & U.S. Air Force veteran
  • $1 million - Home remodeler

Virginia Flag Virginia *2 years

Recent Virginia Settlement Amounts
  • $2.68 million - Metal worker
  • $2.81 million - Railroad worker
  • $2.52 million - U.S. Army veteran & exterminator

Washington Flag Washington *3 years

Recent Washington Settlement Amounts
  • $2.2 million - U.S. Navy veteran & farmer
  • $2.9 million - Chemical engineer
  • $2.4 million - X-ray technician & civil field engineer

Washington, D.C. Flag Washington, D.C. *3 years

The average mesothelioma settlement awards around $1 million.

West Virginia Flag West Virginia *2 years

Recent West Virginia Settlement Amounts
  • $2.53 million - Coal mine and construction worker
  • $2 million - U.S. Navy veteran & union roofer
  • $1.65 million - Secondary exposure victim

Wisconsin Flag Wisconsin *3 years

Recent Wisconsin Settlement Amounts
  • $2.65 million - Union asbestos worker
  • $3.2 million - Mail carrier
  • $2.98 million - Millwright

Wyoming Flag Wyoming *4 years

Recent Wyoming Settlement Amounts
  • $1.14 million - Electric worker
  • $1.83 million - Gas station owner
  • $1.74 million - Petroleum geologist
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The mesothelioma lawsuit statutes of limitations listed above are subject to change. You should work with a mesothelioma lawyer to navigate the deadlines in your state and ensure your claim is filed in a timely manner.

Even if you think the statute of limitations has expired for your situation, you should still contact an experienced mesothelioma attorney. You may be able to file in another state or seek other types of financial compensation.

Keep reading to learn where to file your mesothelioma claim for the best results.

Where Should I File My Asbestos Claim?

Where you file your asbestos lawsuit is one of the most important decisions you will make with regard to your case. The filing location can impact whether your claim is successful and, if it is, the amount of any payouts you receive.

You may have several options as to where to file your mesothelioma lawsuit — even if the statute of limitations in the state where you live has already passed.

You may be able to file your mesothelioma lawsuit in:

  • The state where you live
  • State(s) where you lived in the past
  • State(s) where your asbestos exposure occurred
  • State(s) where the companies responsible for your asbestos exposure are based
  • State(s) where those companies operated or conducted business in the past

A mesothelioma law firm can review the facts of your case and offer guidance on where you should file for the best outcome.

Looking for an experienced mesothelioma lawyer to help you file a claim? Download our Free Attorney Checklist to ensure you ask the right questions during the interview process.

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Factors Affecting the Statute of Limitations for Asbestos Claims

Besides different states having different statutes of limitations, several other factors can affect a mesothelioma statute of limitations.

These factors include:

  • Claim type (personal injury or wrongful death)
  • Date of mesothelioma diagnosis (personal injury) or date of death (wrongful death)
  • Where you live
  • Where your asbestos exposure occurred
  • Where the asbestos companies to blame for your exposure are located
  • Whether you have more than one asbestos-related disease

Some circumstances may allow you more time to file a mesothelioma lawsuit.

An asbestos lawyer can review the facts of your case, explain the mesothelioma statute of limitations, and note any exceptions that may apply.

Call (866) 608-8933 for a free case evaluation before the mesothelioma statute of limitations expires and you lose your opportunity to pursue compensation.

Other Options If the Statute of Limitations on Asbestos Claims Expires

If you suspect your state’s mesothelioma statute of limitations has expired, don’t be discouraged. There may be other ways to pursue compensation for you and your family.

Some other options to explore include:

  • Asbestos trust funds: Bankrupt asbestos product manufacturers were court-ordered to put money aside to pay people who got sick from their products. Currently, more than $30 billion is available in these trusts. Asbestos trust fund claim deadlines differ from mesothelioma lawsuit statutes of limitations and may be longer sometimes.
  • Filing an asbestos claim in another state: In many cases, asbestos victims can file a claim in a state other than where they currently live.
  • Mesothelioma statute of limitations exceptions: Certain asbestos exposure victims may qualify for extensions to, or exceptions from, the Mesothelioma statute of limitations.
  • Veterans Assistance (VA) benefits: U.S. military veterans with an asbestos-related disease may qualify for VA benefits and health care.

We can help you investigate all potential avenues of compensation. To get started, determine if you qualify to access asbestos trust fund compensation right now.

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Work With a Mesothelioma Lawyer to File Your Claim in Time

The only way to ensure your claim is filed correctly and within the appropriate mesothelioma statute of limitations is to work with an experienced lawyer.

An asbestos attorney can file a mesothelioma claim on your behalf without burdening you with the stress of the legal process.

Mesothelioma law firms have the resources to file your case before the deadline and fight for the compensation your family needs and deserves.

If you or a loved one have been diagnosed with mesothelioma, take action as soon as possible. Otherwise, you could lose your ability to file a claim forever.

Don’t waitget your free consultation today.

Mesothelioma Statute of Limitations FAQs

Is there a time limitations for mesothelioma cases?

Yes. Each state has its own time limit, or statute of limitations, for mesothelioma claims. It is important to check the statute of limitations in your state and work with an experienced mesothelioma attorney to ensure your lawsuit is filed before this window closes.

Even if you believe your claim has expired, checking with a mesothelioma attorney is in your best interest. They may be able to file your case in another state or pursue mesothelioma compensation from other sources.

Can you claim for mesothelioma after death?

Yes. Spouses, children, and other family members can file a wrongful death lawsuit if a loved one has died of mesothelioma or another asbestos-related disease.

The statute of limitations for wrongful death can differ from the asbestos personal injury statute of limitations. Work with a lawyer specializing in asbestos litigation to see if you can file.

What is the limitation period for mesothelioma?

How long you have to file a mesothelioma claim depends on various factors, including the state you plan to file and the type of claim.

Mesothelioma personal injury and wrong death claims have different statutes of limitations. In personal injury cases, these deadlines range between 1-6 years.

However, in most states, people have 2-3 years to file an asbestos personal injury claim.

What can I do if the asbestos claims statute of limitations has expired?

If the asbestos claims statute of limitations has expired in your state, you may be able to file your claim in another state.

For example, you may be able to bring a claim in the state where you were exposed to asbestos or where the company responsible for your asbestos exposure is based.

An attorney specializing in asbestos litigation can let you know the states in which you may be able to file. They can also pursue other types of asbestos compensation on your behalf, like asbestos trust fund money and VA benefits.

Laura WrightWritten by:

Lead Editor

Laura Wright is a journalist and content strategist with more than 15 years of professional experience. She attended college at the University of Florida, graduating magna cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in journalism in 2008. Her writing has been featured in The Gainesville Sun and other regional publications throughout Florida.

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References
  1. American Bar Association. “The Many Ways to Extend a Limitations Period.” Retrieved from: https://www.americanbar.org/groups/litigation/committees/consumer/practice/2019/many-ways-to-extend-a-limitations-period/. Accessed on May 13, 2024.
  2. Bostwick, H. (2022, May 2). “What are statutes of limitations?” LegalZoom. Retrieved May 13, 2024, from https://www.legalzoom.com/articles/what-are-statutes-of-limitations.
  3. Cornell Law School. “Statute of Limitations.” Retrieved from: https://www.law.cornell.edu/wex/statute_of_limitations. Accessed on May 13, 2024.
  4. Findlaw. “Time Limits to Bring a Case: The ‘Statute of Limitations.’ (2022, December 22). Retrieved May 13, 2024, from http://injury.findlaw.com/accident-injury-law/time-limits-to-bring-a-case-the-statute-of-limitations.html.
  5. Goguen, D. (2020, August 19). “What’s the deadline to file a personal injury lawsuit?” www.alllaw.com. Retrieved May 13, 2024, from https://www.alllaw.com/articles/nolo/personal-injury/deadlines-file-lawsuit.html.
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