Posted by Helen Childs, Partner
Claim for paper mill worker who developed mesothelioma settles after first firm of solicitors abandon the case
Gerald, a retired paper mill worker, developed mesothelioma in 2014.
A support group referred him to a firm of solicitors, but unfortunately Gerald was very unwell by then and he died shortly after meeting with them. The solicitors were unable to continue with his claim largely because Gerald’s Will appointed the partners in another firm of solicitors as his Executors and they were unable to agree terms with the former firm of solicitors to allow them to pursue the claim even under a no win no fee agreement. They also had no direct evidence of exposure to asbestos during the period for which they had been able to track down insurers for the company, because Gerald’s statement indicated that he had retired much earlier than he actually had.
Gerald’s daughter contacted us in 2017 and instructed Helen Childs. We obtained Gerald’s employment history indicating that he has continued working at the paper mill much later than he had said in his initial statement, and a witness statement from a former employee at the paper mill was taken. He was able to confirm that Gerald was exposed to substantial levels of airborne asbestos dust throughout his employment as a result of work being undertaken to repair and maintain the machinery.
Workers in paper mills were often exposed to asbestos because the process of making paper from pulp involves heat, and the machinery and pipe work was typically lagged with asbestos which had to undergo repair and maintenance.
Medical evidence was obtained and an offer was made to the defendant to settle the claim. Court proceedings were commenced and the claim settled in the autumn of 2018 for a substantial five figure sum shortly before the proceedings needed to be served.
Gerald’s daughter said “I contacted Helen and her team, and we have had success and a successful claim. If it hadn’t been for Helen and her determination we would never have got the claim sorted so don’t give up when others say they can’t help, contact Helen and see what happens.“
If you have been diagnosed with an asbestos related disease and would like further advice, please do not hesitate to contact us.
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