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Written by Melloney Harbutt

Boyes Turner’s specialist mesothelioma and asbestos disease claims team were instructed by the family of Mr Y in April 2020 following Mr Y’s diagnosis of mesothelioma. Sadly he also suffered from Alzheimer’s. The claim therefore proceeded via his daughter, who had power of attorney and therefore the legal entitlement to bring the claim on his behalf. Melloney Harbutt, Senior Associate Solicitor, dealt with the claim.

Mr Y was a retired fabricated welder, working at Shotton Steelworks for many years. Part of his job was to remove old pipework, which had been lagged with asbestos, and install the new pipework. William Press & Son Limited had an ongoing contract there at the time and he was employed by William Press & Son Limited. Mr Y’s work involved regular disturbance of and contact with asbestos, without protection. He also worked in the same vicinity as laggers.

Witness evidence was obtained from Mr Y’s family members, including his brother who he worked with.

Thereafter medical evidence was acquired and a supportive medical report confirmed that Mr Y was suffering from mesothelioma as a result of his asbestos exposure whilst employed by William Press & Son Limited and that, sadly, his life expectancy had been reduced as result.

During the progression of the claim, Mr Y, who lived alone, moved in with his daughter so that she could provide him with care and assistance as his mesothelioma progressed.

Melloney set about gathering details of the financial losses Mr Y was entitled to, swiftly given his poor residual life expectancy.

The solicitors representing William Press admitted that William Press had negligently exposed Mr Y to asbestos and that this was in breach of the duties they owed him as an employee. They made an interim payment of compensation of £50,000 to Mr Y whilst settlement negotiations then took place. A final settlement was subsequently agreed between the parties, to compensate Mr Y for his pain and suffering and the associated past and future losses resulting from his asbestos-related diagnosis of mesothelioma.

However, the Court’s approval of the settlement was required given that Mr Y lacked capacity to litigate and therefore Melloney prepared the necessary papers for the Court and quickly obtained the Court’s approval of the settlement reached, within Mr Y’s lifetime.

Mr Y and his family are delighted with the outcome.

Mr Y’s daughter commented as follows on behalf of the family: 

“Melloney answered questions thoroughly and promptly and guided us through the process with great expertise and knowledge. We were kept completely informed at every stage and we had utmost confidence in Melloney and her team. We are especially grateful that Melloney was mindful of the time left to our Dad and worked hard to bring the case to a timely and successful conclusion. Melloney made what could have been a difficult process, as easy as possible for us. We are all relieved that Dad has now got the money to ensure he has the best care for the remainder of his life.”

Melloney commented: “This case was started and concluded during the COVID-19 pandemic but we are delighted that we were able to push the claim forward in the usual way for Mr Y and to secure such a satisfactory outcome for him at this difficult time. Mr Y and his family can now enjoy their time together knowing that the claim has been successfully concluded and that he has the compensation to which he is entitled. It was a pleasure to have assisted them”.