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Asbestosis Claims – A Guide to Claiming Compensation

Being diagnosed with an asbestos-related disease such as asbestosis can knock you for six. As well as the impact on your health and well-being, you might also have concerns about how your condition might affect your loved ones. If your suffering has been caused by an employer’s negligence, you could be entitled to claim asbestosis compensation. Therefore, this guide answers some of the most common questions about how the asbestosis claims process works.

To help you get a quick idea about your eligibility to claim compensation for asbestosis, we provide a free initial consultation. There’s no obligation to act upon the legal advice we offer but, if your claim is suitable, we could partner you with one of our specialist solicitors. If you both decide to proceed with the claim, you’ll benefit from a No Win, No Fee service.

Therefore, if you’d like to discuss an asbestosis claim with one of our specialist advisors, you can:

Please read on for more on asbestosis compensation claims but feel free to get in touch if you have any further questions.

What Is Asbestosis?

Asbestosis is an incurable lung disease that affects those who have been exposed to asbestos – an insulating product used widely in construction and other industries from the 1930s until the 1970s. The use of some types of asbestos was banned in 1985 while a complete ban was introduced in 1999. However, asbestos can still be found in schools, hospitals, apartment blocks and other buildings today. Left undisturbed, asbestos doesn’t pose many problems. However, if it becomes disturbed, its dust can be inhaled and lead to conditions like asbestosis.

In most cases, asbestosis victims will have been exposed to large volumes of asbestos. Importantly, asbestosis can take years to develop so even if you were exposed to asbestos decades ago, you might still be at risk.

Asbestosis is caused when tiny particles of asbestos dust enter the lungs and cause scarring. Over time, these scars can get bigger and bigger and lead to a reduction in lung capacity. If that happens, it will be very hard for your lungs to work as well as before.

You could make an asbestosis claim if you’ve received a recent diagnosis. Even if you’re unsure where you might have been exposed to asbestos, why not call us and we’ll review your options for free?

What Are the Symptoms of Asbestosis?

According to the NHS website, some of the most common symptoms related to asbestosis include:

  • A persistent cough.
  • Fatigue.
  • Wheezing and shortness of breath.
  • Chest or shoulder pain.
  • Swollen or clubbed fingertips (in cases that are more advanced).

If you’re worried that you might be suffering because of asbestos exposure, you should visit your GP for an initial assessment.

Can I Make an Asbestosis Claim?

Legally, there is a duty of care placed on employers to make reasonable adjustments to the workplace to try and keep staff as safe as possible. This duty comes from laws like the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974.

According to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), those responsible for buildings (including workplaces) that might contain asbestos should:

  • Assess whether any materials in the building might contain asbestos.
  • Keep a register of the locations of any suspected asbestos in the building.
  • Assess the risk of anyone inhaling asbestos fibres.
  • Create and implement an asbestos management plan.
  • Regularly monitor the condition of any areas containing asbestos.
  • Provide information to those who might work in those areas about the potential presence of asbestos.

The criteria that will generally need to apply before you can start an asbestosis claim include:

  • You must’ve been owed a duty of care by the defendant (your employer).
  • The defendant’s failure to uphold their duty caused you to be exposed to asbestos.
  • As a result, you’ve been diagnosed with asbestosis in the last three years.

Due to the length of time between exposure and diagnosis, asbestos compensation claims can be quite complex. However, we’re here to help so please feel free to call for a no-obligation review of your case.

Can I Make a Compensation Claim for Asbestosis Against an Old Employer?

As part of the asbestosis claims process, your employment history will be reviewed. This will make it easier to identify where you were exposed to asbestos at work. Importantly, you could be entitled to claim against an employer whom you haven’t worked with for years. You could even claim against an employer that doesn’t trade any more.

To find out more, please call one of our specialists today.

What Evidence Can Be Used for Asbestosis Claims?

Even if you were exposed to asbestos decades ago, it may still be possible to find evidence to strengthen your case. If you decide to work with one of our solicitors, this is something they may offer to help with.

Some examples of evidence that could support asbestosis claims include:

  • Witness statements from colleagues to help confirm your working conditions.
  • Medical records from your GP or a lung specialist to help prove your diagnosis.
  • A full copy of your work history to narrow down where you were exposed to asbestos.
  • Photographs of your workplace if available.

If you’d like to check whether you’ve got enough evidence to claim compensation for asbestosis, why not speak to us today?

How Long Do I Have to Claim Asbestosis Compensation?

Legally, the Limitation Act 1980 places a 3-year time limit on workplace injury claims. For example, if you had an accident at work and were injured, you’d have 3 years to claim from the date of the incident.

However, as asbestosis may take decades to develop, the 3-year time limit for asbestosis claims begins from your date of knowledge i.e. the date a medical professional confirmed your diagnosis.

If a potential claimant doesn’t have the mental capacity to claim for asbestosis themselves i.e. if they’re old and frail, someone else could act as their litigation friend and seek asbestos compensation on their behalf. Please get in touch if you’d like to know more.

employee with asbestosis background

Take the first step towards claiming compensation for asbestosis with our complimentary free consultation.

With 30+ years of experience, our solicitors are committed to providing a 100% No Win, No Fee claims service, offering claimants a risk-free path to pursue the compensation they deserve.

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Or call us on 0333 241 2519 to speak with a specialist solicitor.

How Much Compensation for Asbestosis Can I Claim?

It’s difficult to say how much compensation for asbestosis a claimant might receive because each claim is different. If the claim is successful, you’ll be compensated based on the severity of your symptoms, the extent of pain and suffering and how your symptoms have affected you.

To help understand how you have been affected, your medical records and an independent medical report will obtained. These crucial pieces of evidence can then be compared to compensation brackets in the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG).

Our asbestosis compensation table includes some example amounts but please bear in mind that the amounts displayed are not guaranteed.

  • £15,100 – £35,500 where the current level of respiratory disability or lung function impairment due to asbestos is up to 10%.
  • Compensation of £35,500 – £105,850 for the above but the level typically exceeds 10%.

Importantly, the amounts above indicate a provisional general damages award, with the conditions for seeking additional damages typically tied to the onset of cancer, mesothelioma, or a notable escalation in respiratory impairment.

As well as your physical suffering, it may be possible to claim special damages for any costs or expenses linked to your asbestosis diagnosis. For example, your compensation payout might cover:

  • The cost of a full-time nurse or carer at home.
  • Medical expenses.
  • The cost of modifying your home to help you cope with your symptoms i.e. the installation of a stair lift.
  • Travel costs.
  • Lost income and future lost earnings.

If you call our legal advisors, they will review your claim for free and explain how much compensation for asbestosis you might be entitled to.

Can I Claim Compensation for Asbestosis if I’m Not a Full-Time Worker?

The use of subcontractors, consultants and self-employed workers is quite common in industries where asbestos was used in the past. Importantly, these types of workers are all owed the same duty of care by their employer whilst at work.

Therefore, if you’ve been diagnosed with asbestosis and you weren’t directly employed by the firm involved, we could still help you to begin a compensation claim.

Fatal Asbestosis Compensation Claims

In the very worst cases, asbestosis can lead to fatalities. While we realise that no level of compensation will ever replace your loss, you may wish to seek damages at some point to help with any financial implications. For example, you could claim for the cost of their funeral or because you were financially dependent on the deceased’s income.

Also, if you’ve lost a loved one to work-related asbestosis, you may be able to claim for any pain and suffering they endured before their death.

Will I Need a Solicitor to Claim Compensation for Asbestosis?

While you are entitled to make an asbestosis claim on your own, it can be quite an in-depth process. For example, you may need to provide complex legal or medical evidence that spans 20 or 30 years in some cases. Not only will working with a specialist solicitor make things easier, it could lead to a fairer compensation settlement.

If your asbestosis compensation claim is managed by one of our solicitors, some of the services they may provide include:

  • Collection of medical records, witness statements and other evidence.
  • Gathering of your work history.
  • Communication with your employer or their insurance company.
  • Conducting negotiations if there are any arguments regarding liability.
  • Managing your claim from start to finish and sending regular updates.

Importantly, working under a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA) means our solicitors can offer No Win, No Fee asbestosis claims. This means that:

  • You don’t pay your solicitor for their work upfront.
  • If the claim is lost, there are no fees to pay for your solicitor’s services.
  • Where the claim is won, a percentage of any payout will be retained as your solicitor’s success fee.

Importantly, to ensure that you keep most of the compensation awarded, the success fee percentage is capped by law.

To see if you could start a No Win, No Fee asbestosis compensation claim, please call today.

How Long Do Asbestosis Claims Take?

The timeframe for asbestosis claims varies and various factors can influence how long a claim takes to be settled including:

  • Whether you could’ve been exposed to asbestos in multiple locations.
  • Whether liability for your diagnosis is accepted quickly.
  • If your prognosis is properly understood.

Importantly, claims can take anywhere between 6 months to more than a year. However, if liability has been accepted, you could start to receive interim payments before your claim has been finalised. These can benefit you immediately by covering lost earnings, care costs and other associated costs.

Do Asbestos Compensation Claims Go To Court?

It is our experience that the vast majority of industrial disease claims are settled out of court. Generally, that’s the case because employers, insurers and solicitors know that court hearings can be costly and take a long time.

However, if your claim cannot be settled amicably, it may be down to a court to decide on liability for your condition and the value of any settlement you’ll receive. In some cases, courts can issue an initial lump sum plus annual compensation payments for the rest of your life.

Contacting Us About an Asbestosis Claim

We hope our guide has answered your questions on how to claim compensation for asbestosis. If you’d like to discuss your case further, you can:

  • Call 0333 241 2519 and speak with one of our friendly advisors.
  • Use our live chat service to get in touch.

Remember, our initial legal advice is provided on a no-obligation basis. Also, all asbestosis claims accepted by our solicitors are handled on a No Win No Fee basis.

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