Bartletts Solicitors has welcomed the creation of a new £380m compensation fund for victims of asbestos related diseases including mesothelioma.
Sufferers diagnosed after July 2012 who, until now, have been unable to claim compensation from former employers or insurers as a result of being unable to trace them can now make a claim to the new compensation fund.
“This is good news for individuals who are suffering from an asbestos related disease and represents justice at last with higher compensation levels now available to them,” says Trevor Morris, Director, Bartletts Solicitors.
From April 2014, victims of asbestos related cancer and their families are able to claim for compensation, with payments set to range between £115,000 and £123,000 – far higher than the previous average of less than £20,000.
Caused by exposure to asbestos, mesothelioma is an aggressive form of cancer that can lie dormant for up to 5 decades before symptoms start to show. This is why, although the dangers of asbestos are now known and the natural material has been forbidden in the UK since 1999, many people are still suffering and many more will suffer as a result of earlier asbestos exposure.
“Mesothelioma is a frightening disease as it takes a long time for symptoms to develop but then progresses very quickly,” comments Trevor Morris.
“For those who were exposed to asbestos in the workplace, commonly in the construction, shipbuilding and engineering industries in the 1970s and 1980s and in the house building industry from as early as the 1950s, this news represents justice at last.
“Employers have a duty of care to ensure staff are kept safe and out of danger in the workplace, and this new fund has been created for those employees who were negligently exposed to asbestos at work.”
The Mesothelioma Act came into law in January this year and has led to the compensation fund being established, financed by the insurance industry.
On top of the compensation, this fund will also pay £7,000 towards legal costs.
Individuals diagnosed after 25 July 2012 who can’t trace their previous employer or insurer can apply to the fund and the Government estimates there are around 3,500 mesothelioma victims or their families who may be eligible for compensation.
Trevor Morris adds: “If you or your dependants are suffering because of exposure to asbestos that has caused mesothelioma or an asbestos related disease, it’s important you check whether you can make a claim to this fund for the compensation you deserve.”
To speak to one of our specialist personal injury solicitors today about your personal situation, call us on Freephone 0800 988 3674 or 01244 313 301 or email us on firstname.lastname@example.org