Mesothelioma Statute of Limitations

If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with mesothelioma, you may be able to file a private claim to get compensation. However, you must file your claim within your state’s statute of limitations, or deadline. Otherwise, you will miss your opportunity to access legal compensation. File a mesothelioma claim before time runs out with our help.

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What Is the Statute of Limitations on Mesothelioma Claims?

A mesothelioma statute of limitations is a time limit to file for compensation after being diagnosed with this cancer.

Statutes vary by state. However, most mesothelioma statutes of limitations range from 1-3 years.

Lawyers sitting around a brown table. A gavel, paper, and computers are visible on the table.In mesothelioma cases, something called the discovery rule applies. This rule states that the statute of limitations begins to run on the date that the patient discovers the injury. This is usually the date on which the patient is diagnosed with mesothelioma or dies from the disease.

U.S. veterans with mesothelioma can benefit greatly if they file a legal claim before the statute of limitations runs out in their case.

$1 Million Average Settlement
$1 Million
Average Settlement
*varies case by case

The average mesothelioma lawsuit pays out $1 million or more, and veterans won’t sue the U.S. military or government. Further, veterans can still get medical and financial benefits from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) if they file a claim within set deadlines.

Don’t miss out: Our legal partners can help you file a lawsuit within the mesothelioma statutes of limitations. Get a free consultation now.

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Statute of Limitations by Lawsuit Type

When the statute of limitations starts running depends on the type of mesothelioma lawsuit being filed, among other factors.

Mesothelioma lawsuits are typically filed as:

  • Personal injury lawsuits: These are filed by the person who has been diagnosed with mesothelioma. The statute of limitations usually starts on the date of diagnosis.
  • Wrongful death lawsuits: These are filed by the family of someone who died from mesothelioma. The date of death is generally when the statute of limitations starts. If a mesothelioma patient dies before a personal injury claim is resolved, it can be continued by the family members as a wrongful death claim.

The statute of limitations for personal injury and wrongful death asbestos lawsuits varies depending on the state. For help, speak with an attorney to file a case before the mesothelioma lawsuit deadline runs out.

Mesothelioma Statute of Limitations by State

Mesothelioma lawsuit statutes of limitations vary by state law. You may have a longer or shorter amount of time to file a case depending on the state you live in or were injured in.

View the full list of mesothelioma statutes of limitations by state below.

  • Alabama: 2 years
  • Alaska: 2 years
  • Arizona: 2 years
  • Arkansas: 3 years
  • California: 2 years
  • Colorado: 2 years
  • Connecticut: 3 years
  • Delaware: 2 years
  • Florida: 4 years
  • Georgia: 2 years
  • Hawaii: 2 years
  • Idaho: 2 years
  • Illinois: 2 years
  • Indiana: 2 years
  • Iowa: 2 years
  • Kansas: 2 years
  • Kentucky: 1 year
  • Louisiana: 1 year
  • Maine: 6 years
  • Maryland: 3 years
  • Massachusetts: 3 years
  • Michigan: 3 years
  • Minnesota: 2 years
  • Mississippi: 3 years
  • Missouri: 5 years
  • Montana: 3 years
  • Nebraska: 4 years
  • Nevada: 2 years
  • New Hampshire: 3 years
  • New Jersey: 2 years
  • New Mexico: 3 years
  • New York: 3 years
  • North Carolina: 3 years
  • North Dakota: 6 years
  • Ohio: 2 years
  • Oklahoma: 2 years
  • Oregon: 2 years
  • Pennsylvania: 2 years
  • Rhode Island: 3 years
  • South Carolina: 3 years
  • South Dakota: 3 years
  • Tennessee: 1 year
  • Texas: 2 years
  • Utah: 4 years
  • Vermont: 3 years
  • Virginia: 2 years
  • Washington: 3 years
  • Washington, DC: 3 years
  • West Virginia: 2 years
  • Wisconsin: 3 years
  • Wyoming: 4 years

It’s important to know that asbestos claim statutes of limitations can change as state laws get updated.

Contact us now to find out which mesothelioma statutes of limitations may apply to your case, depending on where you lived and worked, as well as other factors.

What Factors Affect Mesothelioma Statutes of Limitations?

Other than the state and the type of lawsuit filed, several factors can affect the statutes of limitations on mesothelioma claims. View notable factors below.

Location of Asbestos Exposure

Where and when you were exposed to asbestos can affect which statutes of limitations apply to your case. It may be possible to file a claim in a different state from which you live.

This can be helpful because you may be able to file a lawsuit even if the mesothelioma statute of limitation in the state you currently reside in has expired.

Latency Period

Due to its long latency period (time between asbestos exposure and mesothelioma symptoms), mesothelioma can take 10-50 years from the date of exposure to be diagnosed.

In most cases, the statutes of limitations won’t start running until decades after the date of the initial asbestos exposure.

Asbestos Company Locations

It may be possible to file a mesothelioma lawsuit in the state(s) where an asbestos company was located or did business in.

This gives mesothelioma patients more options and could possibly give them additional time to file if the statute of limitations in one particular state is longer than another.

Statute of Limitations for Other Mesothelioma Claims

In addition to filing a mesothelioma lawsuit, it may be possible for an asbestos victim to file other types of claims after being diagnosed with this cancer to get help.

However, mesothelioma statutes of limitations for other types of claims aren’t the same as those used to file lawsuits.

The two most common asbestos claims are:

  • Asbestos trust fund claims: Bankrupt manufacturers of asbestos-containing products were court-ordered to set up trust funds to compensate asbestos victims. These trusts established their own statutes of limitations. Most claims must be filed within a few years after being diagnosed.
  • VA benefits: Veterans with mesothelioma can apply for VA benefits, including monthly compensation and low-cost or free health care from top doctors. There is no statute of limitations to file a claim. However, it may take several months to get a VA benefits claim approved. Veterans are encouraged to file as soon as possible.

Our team can help you access any and all mesothelioma benefits you deserve before time runs out. Learn about all available benefits in our Free Veterans Packet.

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Steps to Take If the Mesothelioma Statute of Limitations Runs Out

Discovering that your mesothelioma statute of limitations has already run out can be devastating. However, it doesn’t mean all hope is lost. Here’s what you can do if you believe your mesothelioma statute of limitations has run out.

1. Consult a Mesothelioma Lawyer

An experienced mesothelioma attorney can take a detailed look at your case and see if your statute of limitations has truly run out or if you have other options.

Remember: It may be possible to file your asbestos case in a different state where the statute of limitations hasn’t expired.

Asbestos attorneys can also identify any exceptions that apply to your case and alternative avenues for seeking mesothelioma compensation.

2. Pursue Alternatives

If your statute of limitations has run out and no exceptions apply, a lawyer can see if you can file an asbestos trust fund claim or access mesothelioma VA benefits.

As previously mentioned, trusts have different statutes from those which govern mesothelioma lawsuits, and there are no deadlines to file VA claims.

Both options can be very helpful in securing financial compensation for mesothelioma.

File a Claim Within Mesothelioma Statutes of Limitations

If you or a loved one was diagnosed with mesothelioma, don’t wait. Connect with a top asbestos lawyer now to make sure your lawsuit is filed within the mesothelioma statute of limitations.

Filing your case as soon as possible can help ensure that the statute of limitations won’t expire. Further, the earlier your lawsuit is filed, the sooner you may be able to receive life-changing compensation.

The Mesothelioma Veterans Center is proud to help both civilians and former service members file lawsuits within any deadlines, as well as secure money through trust funds and VA benefits. Our team can assist you and your family right now.

FAQs on Mesothelioma Lawsuit Statutes of Limitations

What is the limitation period for mesothelioma cases?

Most asbestos claims statute of limitations range from 1-3 years, with the overall range being 1-6 years. The statutes vary by state and depending on whether the case is for personal injury or wrongful death.

Connect with a mesothelioma attorney to learn how these time limits will affect your case.

Can you claim for mesothelioma after death?

Yes, you may be able to file a mesothelioma claim if a family member passed away from this cancer. In these cases, the statute of limitations begins on the date the cancer patient died.

Are statutes of limitations longer for mesothelioma than for other types of cancer?

No. The statutes of limitations are not longer if a patient has mesothelioma compared to another asbestos-caused cancer such as lung cancer.

As with mesothelioma, the clock usually begins ticking when the patient receives their cancer diagnosis.

Talk to an experienced lawyer or law firm to learn more about your timeline for filing a cancer lawsuit.

Where should you file your mesothelioma claim?

A mesothelioma lawyer can determine the best state to file your case in and when to file it.

You may be able to file a claim in the state where you currently reside, the state(s) in which you were exposed to asbestos, and the state(s) where the asbestos companies responsible for your asbestos exposure did business.

Since the mesothelioma statute of limitations varies by state, you may have more time to file a claim in one state than another.

Veterans Support Team
Christopher Dryfoos PhotoWritten by:

Contributing Author

Christopher Dryfoos is a journalist and member of the American Medical Writers Association (AMWA). As the grandson of the U.S. Navy’s first forensic pathologist, he aims to help veterans with mesothelioma access needed care.

  1. Cornell Law School: Legal Information Institute (n.d). Personal injury. Retrieved May 25, 2023, from
  2. Cornell Law School: Legal Information Institute (n.d). Statute of limitations. Retrieved May 25, 2023, from
  3. Cornell Law School: Legal Information Institute (n.d). Wrongful death action. Retrieved May 25, 2023 from