Asbestos Settlement


Asbestos Settlement

Victims of asbestos related disease and their families are entitled to receive compensation for their condition which would include an award for the ‘pain and suffering’ caused by their illness [referred to as General Damages] together with an award for other losses and expenses [referred to as General Damages] which would include lost wages, loss of pension entitlement, private treatment costs, medical expenses, care costs, cost of aids and adaptions required to your home, hospice care and travel costs. 

If a sufferer has died from mesothelioma, lung cancer or other asbestos illness their dependents might also be able to claim compensation in the form of Bereavement Damages, funeral expenses, financial dependency on the person who has died and for the loss of love and affection of a husband, wife, father or mother.

The insurance industry and trust funds have paid out many millions of pounds to those workers who have been diagnosed with mesothelioma, lung cancer, asbestosis, pleural thickening, pleural effusions and pleural plaques brought about through employment where workers were exposed to asbestos and handled asbestos products.

In the United States asbestos litigation involving mesothelioma victims accounts for the most expensive mass tort in their history which resulted in many leading asbestos companies filing for bankruptcy to avoid litigation. Some Law firms have brought criminal proceedings arising from the risks of harm posed to workers or through improper management of waste asbestos.

Insurance for employers became compulsory in 1972 but still today many insurance records are missing which make it difficult for many who are eligible to claim asbestos-related compensation, specifically in those instances where the offending company no longer trades. Prior to the introduction of The Mesothelioma Act 2014 many mesothelioma victims were unable to bring compensation claims on the basis company insurance records could not be found. The Act created the ‘Diffuse Mesothelioma Payment Scheme’ (DMPS) which is designed to compensate those who developed mesothelioma on or after 25th July, 2012.  Unlike other government ‘no fault’ compensation schemes compensation claims made through DMPS require a claimant to prove they have mesothelioma and that they were exposed to asbestos through the negligence of their employer.

Before formally instructing a solicitor to handle your case it is important to ask sufficient questions to give you confidence in terms of the solicitor’s expertise in this field of law and you might wish to ask about their experience and success rates, whether they are a member of the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL), the funding options available and their overall view of your own particular case.  Our legal team are leading industrial disease specialists who are proud to produce client testimonials which highlight their professionalism, skill and dedicated customer focus throughout their cases.  Please speak with us on FREEPHONE 0808 164 6018.

£475,000.00 COMPENSATION RECOVERED FOR ASBESTOS PLEURAL THICKENING SUFFERER

We are pleased to report that our legal team recently succeeded in a complex, high value asbestos claim for, Mr G, who was sadly diagnosed with asbestos related, diffuse pleural thickening arising out of his asbestos exposure with Frank Bird (Builders) Limited.

Mr G was employed by the building company as a bricklayer and general renovator from 1978/79 to November 1988. He was nominally ‘self-employed’ for the period from 1986/87 to November 1988 but evidence was obtained from Mr G in the asbestos claim which confirmed that, in fact, he was treated as an employee throughout that period, where he continued to work on the same basis for his employer.

Detailed witness statements were taken from Mr G in his claim for pleural thickening compensation and he confirmed recalling working at a boathouse in Tewkesbury, around 1983 approximately, where an upstairs storage area was being turned into a flat. The walls and ceilings were lined with asbestos sheeting and Mr G and his colleagues used crowbars, hammers and shovels to smash through and remove the asbestos sheets. Large amounts of asbestos dust and fibre were released in this way, during work which lasted for a number of weeks.

At the end of each day, Mr G and his colleagues would dry sweep the asbestos dust and debris, raising further clouds of asbestos dust and fibre. This was relied upon as further proof of negligence and breach of statutory duty in the pleural thickening claim.

On another contract he recalled, Mr G worked on a flat roof in Aston on Carrant around 1980 approximately, fitting asbestos tiles to create an elevated patio area. Mr G and his colleagues used a circular saw to cut through the asbestos tiles, releasing large amounts of asbestos dust and fibre.

Again, Mr G and his colleagues would dry sweep the asbestos dust and debris, raising further clouds of asbestos dust and fibre.

Throughout the period of his employment, there would be times when Mr G fitted garage roofs made from asbestos sheets. Mr G and his colleagues would use a circular saw to cut through the asbestos sheets, releasing large amounts of asbestos dust and fibre.

Further asbestos dust and fibre would be released by the handling and fixing of the asbestos sheets. The offcuts from the asbestos sheets would be thrown into bags, resulting in the release of more asbestos dust and fibre. Mr G explained in his statements in support of his claim for asbestos compensation and he and his colleagues would then dry sweep the remaining asbestos dust and debris, raising further clouds of asbestos dust and fibre.

Mr G also recalled working with asbestos rope at the company, which he used when building fire places. This was used as a packing material similar to an expansion joint when building fire places. The asbestos rope came in rope form and measured around three quarters of an inch in thickness. He cut this to size using a knife or trowel. He can remember this being a very soft and pliable material. Some asbestos dust would be released into the atmosphere and when he did this type of work, the asbestos dust would cover his hands, but it was not as dusty as other types of asbestos work he did for the business.

Mr G would then push the rope in with his hands all the way around the gap between the face brick and the fire back. He did this type of work twice a year on average throughout his approximate 10 years period of work with the company.

Expert evidence was obtained from a well-respected respiratory physician in the asbestos claim which confirmed that Mr G had developed serious, asbestos related diffuse pleural thickening arising out of his exposure to asbestos in the ways mentioned. This further supported the claim for asbestos compensation.

The Defendant sought to rely on the expert medical evidence of another respiratory expert in an attempt to argue causation in the asbestos claim, but this report did nothing but support Mr G’s claim for pleural thickening compensation further.

Both experts were in agreement that Mr G had a total cardio-respiratory disability of around 60% and they agreed that there was more than one factor contributing to this disability.

This high value, pleural thickening was complicated further by the fact that Mr G, worked within his own successful, windows and doors business, in the demanding role of Managing Director, before falling seriously ill with his diagnosed asbestos related condition.

Mr G initially stated to the instructed Claimant, medical expert that whilst he continued to run his own business, as best as he could, he felt no longer capable of manual work which he used to perform and his stamina had been significantly reduced, resulting in him working shorter hours. In fact, Mr G eventually made the difficult decision of giving up work in his role as Managing Director during 2017 and a significant sum of asbestos compensation was claimed in the pleural thickening claim for Mr G’s past and future loss of earnings

Mr G sought to improve his situation which we arranged on his behalf and has undergone 5 sessions of private, pulmonary rehabilitation treatment following the experts’ recommendation and he also underwent treatment for his diagnosed sleep apnoea between August and December of 2017. 

The experts agreed that Mr G faced a reduction in his anticipated life expectancy of about 3 years from the risks associated with the impairment of respiratory function by his asbestos related diffuse pleural thickening and the risk of asbestos associated mesothelioma

The only relatively minor point of disagreement between the respiratory experts, related to the apportionment of the 60% disability. Mr G’s instructed expert apportioned this 40% to pleural thickening and 10% to obesity and 10% to smoking related disease and the Defendant’s expert apportioned this 30% to pleural thickening and the remainder to other factors in the asbestos claim.

Expert accountancy evidence was obtained in the asbestos claim on both sides in the pleural thickening claim. Their opinion on the Mr G’s loss of earnings, asbestos compensation differed significantly. 

Care evidence was also obtained in support of the claim for pleural thickening compensation which was used to maximise Mr G’s claim for asbestos compensation.

A joint settlement meeting took place in the asbestos claim at counsel’s chambers in January of 2017 and eventually settled after much negotiation for £475,000.00 gross of apportionment, which incorporated a large amount of asbestos compensation for Mr G’s future loss of earnings. This now protects Mr G’s retirement plans which were effectively accelerated by around 10 years due to the development of his asbestos related diffuse pleural thickening.

In agreeing to the settle the pleural thickening claim on a provisional damages basis, this would leave the door open for Mr G to claim further asbestos compensation should he ever have the misfortune of developing one of the following, agreed return conditions :-

Mesothelioma;

Progression of pleural thickening so as to cause a serious deterioration in the Claimant’s condition;

Following the conclusion of his successful asbestos claim, Mr G kindly prepared a review of our Legal Team and stated,

“Prior to my mid-fifties, I have always been an active man, so you can imagine how devastating it was to be diagnosed with an asbestos related disease. It really does make you think that your luck had run out, but mine was soon reinstated when I chose Oliver& Co Solicitors to take on my case. I could easily have chosen any solicitor from Google, after all they never say “our services are ok but not the best”. My luck really was with me when I chose the company as they were absolutely superb. If you need a solicitor to fight for your rights, then I strongly recommend this company. Without doubt they were professional, friendly, understanding, true to their word, informative of the situation of the case and they do right by you and not their profit! Thank you Oliver & Co Solicitors and especially James Cameron and his team for winning my case with the best financial outcome for my family and I.”

If you require assistance in pursuing an asbestos claim for pleural thickening or for any other asbestos disease then please contact us today on our FREEPHONE TEL. 0808 164 6018 or alternatively email us at, info@asbestoshealthcheck.co.uk