£85,025 settlement for bereaved family of former construction project manager

Boyes Turner’s asbestos disease lawyers have negotiated an £85,025 settlement for the bereaved family of a former construction project manager whose death was partially caused by asbestosis.

The deceased contacted us during his final weeks and instructed us to investigate a possible mesothelioma claim. We made immediate arrangements to visit him at his home and take his detailed statement.

Exposure

He told us that he had been employed as a project manager by three different employers on two separate construction sites. During his employment with the first construction company he had been exposed to asbestos whilst engaged in the construction of an oil refinery between 1961 and 1964. In his role as project manager, he worked alongside various tradesmen, such as plumbers, electricians and engineers. He recalled working in close proximity to laggers who tipped bags of raw asbestos into drums, which they mixed with water. He also worked close to carpenters who cut up asbestos sheets and boards.  

He then worked in a similar role for another contractor at a power station. This company was now dissolved so we traced the employers’ liability insurers and restored them to the register so that proceedings could be issued against them. Then from 1968 to 1972 he was employed by Cape, working back at the oil refinery where the laggers were mixing asbestos lagging and applying it to pipes, and the carpenters were now using electric saws to cut asbestos. 

The claim

We put the claim to all three defendants and secured admissions of breach of duty from each of the insurers, however we still had to satisfy them about the extent to which asbestos disease contributed to our, now deceased, client’s cause of death. He had instructed us to pursue a claim for mesothelioma, but the post mortem revealed that he did not have mesothelioma, instead citing asbestosis as one of many conditions which had led to his death. He had previously suffered a heart attack, angina, stenosis treated with angioplasty/angiography, mild left ventricular dysfunction and congestive cardiac failure. He had pleural plaques but also emphysema, atelectasis (collapse of a lung) and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

We instructed medical experts to clarify the cause of death and the impact of the asbestos exposure on the deceased’s life expectation. Both our medical expert and the expert who was instructed by the three defendants concluded that the deceased had asbestos-related pleural effusion which caused pleural thickening and fibrosis (probably representing asbestosis). They also agreed that the asbestos-related disease had given rise to an additional need for care, reduced his respiratory reserve and contributed to his death. They disagreed on the extent to which the asbestos disease shortened his life; our expert said two years whilst the defendants’ expert thought six months.

Settlement

We had made an offer to settle the claim at £85,000 but the defendants’ insurers offered £35,000. On behalf of the deceased’s personal representatives and dependent family members we issued proceedings and entered judgment against all three defendants. Following settlement negotiations the defendants increased their offer to £80,000, and settlement was finally reached at £85,025.

If you or a loved one are suffering from asbestos-related disease and would like to find out more about making a claim, contact us by email at idclaims@boyesturner.com.

The service was personal, professional and considered. I was treated so kindly and in the end I knew that not only had I found the right organisation but also the right person.

Boyes Turner client

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