Asbestos cancer and other disease claims may be getting easier following recent case law. Here we comment on how the insurance industry appears to be getting the message and are settling claims.
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Read here about how it may be getting easier to make your claim for compensation. and how this might help you and your family.
Recent case law
There have been three recent cases since the turn of the year which have helped asbestos victims. Here is a quick digest.
The Hawkes case
In this failed case for a former electric blanket worker the courts referred to the long held knowledge of the dangers of asbestos. Our article dealt with this in more detail and is right here
The decision set out the importance of Factories Acts in 1937 and 1961 when the dangers of asbestos were clearly known. That case failed because asbestos could not be proved to be part of the blankets but it set out how the law should be applied.
The Bussey Appeal
The court of appeal provided it’s weight to asbestos sufferers with the decision to send back a case to be re heard for a former heating worker denied compensation. Our previous article digested both of the cases see here
This case found that the previous argument that levels given by the Factory Inspectorate called TDN 13 were not the benchmark by which cases should be assessed many years later. Taking practical and easy steps should have been done.
The Heynike decision
This third posiitve case was digested by us here
In this claim a visiting refractory worker working on other factory owners premises was able to make a claim against those owners who knew of the dangers. They could not simply pass off the liability to the man’s employers.
So what does this mean for asbestos cancer victims?
Because of these decisions we understand that many defendant insurers, lawyers and claims staff will be taking stock. The decisions undoubtedly make cases for ALL asbestos victims more simple in the future. In addition this means that some aspects of the case should now be abandoned by defendants. Settlements should be quicker and easier – we hope!.
For a claim for compensation to be successful we need to show:-
- That the person was owed a duty of care – these cases clearly show this and then;
- That there has been a breach of duty – the cases lay this out in explicit detail and then;
- That damage has been caused- defendants may still dispute a diagnosis but if you have supportive evidence then your case has a fighting chance of success.
Getting over the first and second hurdles been difficult in recent times. The recent cases make that much easier..
The three cases combined give a clear message to defendants that the courts are looking more compassionately at these cases. Defences about modest exposure to asbestos which had been run aggressively by insurers since 2011 now are washed away.
What is Corries experience with asbestos cancer?
At Corries we are seeing that this message is getting home. We have had a number of long-standing cases for mesothelioma and other conditions awaiting these decisions. Admissions and attempts to discuss the cases are starting to make progress..
Corries Director, Solicitor and Manager of the asbestos team commented
“Cases for asbestos related cancer are routinely fought very hard by defendants. However since the three decisions this year I have had a number of argued cases now looking to settle.
It seems to me the insurers are getting the the message and realising that the game is up. I applaud those insurers looking at these cases sensibly and invite all defendants to take the same approach. We can work together and agree settlements for these long-suffering victims of asbestos disease. Let us hope that ALL victims and their families finally get the compensation they deserve.”
Know a family member or friend affected by asbestos disease? Corries are currently running a national advertising campaign to try and encourage victims to claim or join our pleural plaque register.
Call our specialist asbestos team now FREE on (0800) 083 7839. We are happy to talk to you for FREE on a no obligation basis. If we cannot help you then we shall tell you..