An Asbestos claim for disease which caused the death of a retired print worker has resulted in a long and hard fought settlement. Corries winning asbestos team have won five figure compensation.
Corries are nationwide leading asbestos claims solicitors. Got asbestos disease? Then call us FREE on 0800 783 7893.
Asbestos Claim -The Background
We were contacted by our client, Mr C, in late 2015 following a diagnosis of asbestos disease.
He worked for over 30 years at the same print works. This meant he worked on machines which were covered or protected with asbestos for heat and friction purposes.
We checked out his records and found he had asbestos related pleural thickening.
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Problems with a Paymaster
To make a claim we need to have a company or an insurer to pay up. Commonly many people work for companies which have long gone bust and where insurance cannot be traced. Therefore sadly many people get only a percentage or no compensation whatsoever.
Mr C worked for a company which had been taken over four times during the time he had worked for them over 30 years. Finding the correct successor company or insurer was extremely difficult. The company had seemingly gone bust so there was no company to meet the claim.
Despite enquiries going to many different companies and insurance companies no one was prepared to stand up and meet the claim.
During this time we investigated the medical part of the case. We arranged good medical evidence ready to be served once we had a paymaster.
Asbestos Claim -The long and winding road
Our enquiries continued. Sadly Mr C died at the age of 89 in November 2016. He was aware that we were fighting hard for him.
The case was paused by investigations by the Coroner for many months. A post mortem was ordered and tissue samples sent away. Consequently those investigations showed that the amount of asbestos damage was worse than first thought.
The post mortem showed that the late Mr C’s organs and body was otherwise in good condition.
What happened next?
We made further and more expensive enquiries. We eventually managed to trace an insurer who coordinated insurers through this very complex picture to recover 55% of the claim.
Our medical evidence showed that the late Mr C’s death was due to bronchopneumonia because of his pleural thickening. He had been described as sprightly in the years before his death. Our medical expert reported that this man, despite being 89 years of age, would have lived another 7.5 years.
The defendants response
We presented all of this evidence to the defendants who co ordinated the case. The medical picture helped present a much higher gross figure for compensation than first thought. This was hard for them to challenge and an acceptable offer was made and accepted just before Christmas 2018. The figure reflected that Mrs C had lost her husband for those remaining years.
Why is this asbestos claim important?
There were three issues that come out of this case.
- Firstly was the unknown aspect of danger from asbestos from those in the printing and media industry. Mr C’s case shows that dangerous doses of asbestos may have affected many more in the industry.
- Secondly this case showed how even if a case cannot settle in life then post mortem evidence can help support the case for the family. In this case Mr C was an otherwise very healthy man. If he had not been exposed to asbestos he would have lived for many years. Whilst he died at the age of 89 his wife has lost out on enjoying their final years together as a result of the asbestos disease
- This case showed the importance of having experienced solicitors with determination on your case. It is often like a minefield treading through company history where they have been taken over on several occasions. Making sure they pay up needs a keen eye and a willingness to chase down many enquiries.
Corries Asbestos Team Manager Howard Bonnett who worked as part of the team in this win commented;
“I am particularly proud of my team for winning this case. For a long time during this case we thought that we would and end up empty-handed. It is very sad that Mr C died during the course of the case. However we promised we would fight this to the end and he was assured that we would try our best to get him or his family what they deserved. I am so pleased we were able to honour that promise
Having the tenacity to stick at cases is engrained in my team’s mindset. We do not cherry pick the best ones – if we can fight a case then we will fight it to its end.
We have won this case and with our battling attitude we will win many more”
If you or a family member or friend have been affected by asbestos disease you need experience in your corner. If you think we might be able to help then call us. It is FREE and with no obligation. Call us now on 0800 783 7839.