Michael Ponterio, founding partner from Lipsitz Ponterio & Comerford LLC joins Mel Camp. Mel asked Michael why it is important for people who have been diagnosed with mesothelioma or lung cancer to call an attorney. Michael says in an asbestos case, you’ve been diagnosed with mesothelioma lung cancer often times it is the person diagnosed that can testify regarding their workplace or exposure to asbestos going back maybe 20 – 30 years. He says it is very important for that person to preserve their testimony.
Why is it important to speak specifically to an attorney with experience with mesothelioma and asbestos law? Michael says you want you to have the best representation possible and there are so many attorneys out there and just a handful of law firms actually do the work of representing individuals exposed to asbestos. He says you want to have people who have tried cases, you want to have people that have gone through the Appellate courts and actually made positive law in New York State. You want a firm who has the resources to support your claim as you are going through the court system and this all involves having experience in asbestos litigation. Michael says it is so unique that you just can’t walk off the street and be an attorney and think you know how to treat an asbestos case. He says it takes quite a few years to develop that expertise.
Why is it good to go with a local firm over some of the bigger national firms that are out there? Michael says in an asbestos case it is very important to be able to establish how you were exposed to asbestos, whether it be a worksite like Bethlehem Steel or Durez or Hooker Chemical, and our firm over 35 years has a data base of all the worksites in the asbestos products and which companies supplied those products. So that is the big advantage of a local firm versus a national firm. He says a national firm doesn’t have that working knowledge locally of how to successfully pursue a claim.
What kinds of questions should you ask your attorney or potentially attorney? Michael says it is important for a client to ask the attorney, for example: Have you ever tried an asbestos case? How many? How many cases have you actually won? How many cases have you actually litigated through the court system? Can you actually do the work, or do you pass it off to someone else that has less experience? What kind of support staff do you have? Are you a one-person operation, a two-person operation, or do you have a full staff that can represent you throughout the proceedings? Michael says those are kind of the major questions you want to hit and I think, as far as Buffalo goes, there is less than a handful of firms that actually do the work and we have been doing it since 1985.
For more information give them a call at 716-849-0701 or go to lipsitzponterio.com.