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Can you legally remove asbestos yourself?

You think you have asbestos in your house, and you know just how incredibly dangerous it can be. You want it out as soon as possible.

At the same time, you're trying to save money. You don't really want to hire an experienced company to do the job, but would prefer to do it yourself. Based on how hazardous asbestos is, though, you're worried there may be laws making it illegal to remove it yourself.

Legally speaking, it's fine to do it on your own. There is no law against it. Federal regulations don't disallow it and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) won't stop you.

That said, the danger here is real. When you breathe in the particles, you put yourself at risk for asbestosis, a lung disease. There is also the chance that the particles will cut the inside of your lungs and cause permanent scarring. Furthermore, you could develop mesothelioma, an aggressive lung cancer that is often deadly.

The stakes are high. Disturbing asbestos, which you have to do during removal, puts those particles in the air. If you shrug this off and assume it's no worse than any other dust, the results can be fatal.

As such, the EPA does say that it's not best to make this a do-it-yourself job. They say to call in the professionals, who have the proper suits and filters to protect themselves. The EPA claims this is the best way to protect yourself and your family.

Of course, you may be worried that the damage is already done. Asbestos could be found in homes and workplaces all over the state. If you're suffering from mesothelioma and other ailments due to asbestos exposure, be sure you know your legal options.

Source: The Spruce, "Is Do It Yourself Asbestos Removal Legal?" Lee Wallender, accessed Dec. 15, 2017

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