Boyes Turner were instructed in this fatal mesothelioma claim in the summer of 2014.
Mr Z had died from mesothelioma having been diagnosed only 7 weeks before he died.
The deceased and his now widow were living in Ireland but Mr Z’s exposure to asbestos had come about during employment in England in the 1960s when he worked for Cape Building Products Limited, cutting up asbestos sheets with a saw.
He was employed by Cape during two tax years and was provided with no respiratory protection during that time, coming home from work very dusty.
Upon his return to Ireland sometime later, Mr Z worked in various jobs but with no known asbestos exposure.
Having not had an opportunity to take a lifetime statement from Mr Z, Boyes Turner set about trying to contact witnesses and were able to locate two gentleman who worked for the same company at around the same time.
Whilst they did not know the deceased, they were able to give information about the conditions at Cape at the time and work undertaken at the factory.
Supportive medical evidence was obtained but prior to the issue of proceedings, little progress was made with the defendant’s solicitors.
There are three years to bring a claim for compensation and given that the expiry of this period was fast approaching, court proceedings were issued to protect the widow’s position and following service of the proceedings, at the first court hearing, judgment was entered on the issue of breach of duty.
The matter progressed and Boyes Turner complied with the Court Directions ordered.
However, the defendant failed to do very much to progress matters, failing to serve medical evidence most notably.
Boyes Turner, therefore, applied to the court to urgently list a telephone court hearing to consider entering Judgment on the outstanding issue of causation against the defendant.
The defendant’s solicitors tried to move the hearing date on the basis of there being short notice. However the hearing proceeded to deal with Boyes Turner’s application. At the hearing, the defendant attempted to adjourn the hearing and sought permission to adduce histopathological medical evidence, which neither party had permission to rely upon. No previous application had been made by the defendant and this was a very late stage to be seeking to obtain further evidence.
In the circumstances, the judge did not give the defendant the permission they sought and Judgment was entered in full and an Assessment of Damages hearing was listed.
Despite the claimant offering to settle the claim in April 2016, it was not until December that settlement was reached, 8 weeks before the Assessment of Damages hearing and at a level very close to the claimant’s previous offer.
This is an excellent example of a case which had merit but limited evidence but which through hard work, research and investigation, Boyes Turner have successfully built the case.
The family are delighted with the outcome.