Posted by Jennifer Seavor, Partner
Compensation recovered for former Roberts Adlard employee diagnosed with asbestos related diffuse pleural thickening
Brian was diagnosed with pleural plaques following a CT scan in September 2011. He approached solicitors but was unable to pursue a claim for compensation as pleural plaques are not actionable if they are asymptomatic.
In September 2014 Brian noticed that he was becoming breathless on exertion. A chest x-ray revealed he had developed fluid in one of his lungs. He was referred for a CT scan which showed he had developed diffuse pleural thickening. His consultant thought this may have developed due to his exposure to asbestos in the 1960’s.
Between approximately 1965/66 – 1967/68 Brian had worked for Roberts Adlard & Co Ltd as a general labourer. It was a roofing company and the premises were based in Canterbury. Brian’s job involved serving customers in the yard. He regularly handled asbestos products such as asbestos sheeting, asbestos guttering, asbestos downpipes and asbestos cold water tanks. He often had to cut or drill the asbestos products in order to meet the customers’ requirements. He was not provided with any breathing protection whilst employed by the company and there was no health and safety training regarding the dangers of asbestos.
Brian approached specialist asbestos diseases solicitor Jennifer Seavor in 2014 whilst she was employed by another firm. When Jennifer left the company to join Royds Withy King Brian’s case was transferred to another solicitor. Shortly afterwards Brian was told that it was unlikely his claim would be successful and the firm could no longer act for him. Brian got in touch with Jennifer again who took a further witness statement from Brian and approached an expert engineer for further evidence.
The evidence supported Brian’s claim but the former insurers of the company denied liability. It was therefore necessary to commence court proceedings in the High Court. Trial was listed for January but days before the Defendant finally made an offer of settlement which Brian accepted.
Importantly, settlement was agreed on a provisional damages basis which means if Brian is unfortunate enough to develop a further asbestos related disease or his current condition was to worsen, he could claim further compensation in the future.
Brian said: “I was extremely grateful for the friendly but professional and sympathetic approach I received especially in explaining the law in a way I could understand and guiding me through the process to a successful conclusion.”