Boyes Turner’s asbestos–related disease specialists have settled an asbestosis claim against Wellworthy Limited.
Robert* instructed us, following his diagnosis of asbestosis. We took a detailed witness statement from him, setting out his recollection of his asbestos exposure during his time at Wellworthy Limited.
Exposure to asbestos
We obtained a copy of his employment history from HMRC which proved that he was employed by Wellworthy Limited in the 1960s and 1970s. Robert also had some paperwork confirming his start date at Wellworthy that he had kept after all of these years.
His main job there was working as a maintenance plumber and he was not exposed to asbestos in this role. However, he often used to go in at weekends to help do maintenance work on the roof, which was made from corrugated asbestos sheets. The sheets would deteriorate over time and become cracked and broken. As it was a very big site, there were often parts of the roof that had deteriorated and needed replacing.
The sheets were bolted to the roof and he used to undo the bolts and remove the old sheets from the roof. He then took the new sheets and cut them to size with a handsaw, before drilling holes in them in order that they could be bolted to the girders. He then fixed the sheets to the girders with bolts.
He was also exposed to asbestos during their annual two week shutdown period, when he used to clean the air conditioning units.
Provisional and full and final settlements
We obtained medical evidence which supported our client’s assertion that he has asbestosis and that this was likely to have been caused by his exposure to asbestos when he worked at Wellworthy. Our client then had to decide whether to settle his claim on a provisional or a full and final basis.
This is a very important decision for anyone making an asbestos disease claim when there is a risk that:
a) their condition could worsen in the future, or:
b) they could be diagnosed with a more serious asbestos-related illness in the future, such as mesothelioma or lung cancer.
A full and final settlement usually results in the claimant being awarded a greater sum in compensation, to reflect these risks. However, once a claim has been settled on a full and final basis, it means that the claim cannot be reopened at a later date, regardless of whether the claimant subsequently contracts another asbestos related illness or their current illness worsens.
A provisional settlement usually results in a lower award, but allows the claimant to reopen their case and claim further compensation should they subsequently contract another asbestos related illness or if their current illness deteriorates.
There are many things to weigh up when considering which award is appropriate, including the difference in value between a provisional and full and final settlement, the extent of the future risks and the age of the claimant.
Robert considered this and decided that he wished to settle his case on a provisional basis, in order to give him the peace of mind of knowing that he can claim further compensation in the future should his asbestosis get worse or if he is unfortunate enough to be diagnosed with another asbestos related condition.
We are pleased to have assisted Robert with his claim and to have secured compensation for his current asbestos-related illness, while giving him the peace of mind that his claim can be re-opened in the future if necessary.
Robert and his family were happy with the outcome and made the following very kind comments about the service they received from Boyes Turner:
‘Martin Anderson was professional, friendly, knowledgable and has the patience of a saint in our dealings with this claim from start to finish. He remained in regular contact throughout the claim and provide a fantastic service, would highly recommend’.
For more information about how the mesothelioma and asbestos disease claims team can help you or your loved ones after diagnosis with an asbestos-related disease, please contact the team by email on firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone on 0118 952 7199.