Mechanical fitter’s family compensated for asbestos exposure at work
The family of a mechanical fitter who died from mesothelioma has received a six figure compensation payment.
The member was asked to carry out most of his duties near to where workmen were placing asbestos lagging around steam pipes. He was never told to wear a mask while the lagging was carried out only feet away.
When the retired member began to feel unwell in January 2014, he went to see his doctor. Later that month, he was diagnosed with mesothelioma.
Mesothelioma is a form of cancer caused by asbestos. More than 2,500 people are diagnosed with mesothelioma in the UK every year.
His membership had lapsed but Unite agreed to support him because he had been a member when the asbestos exposure occurred. Unite Legal Services instructed industrial disease specialists, Thompsons Solicitors, to investigate his work history and pursued the claim against his former employer.
Sadly, the member died in June 2014 while the claim proceedings were taking place. Unite Legal Services and Thompsons continued to pursue the case on behalf of his family.
The member’s daughter said: “We were so shocked when we found out dad had mesothelioma – we didn’t really know what it was and we were all scared. Thankfully we were able to speak to experts at Unite Legal Services to give us an explanation of the disease. I’m sure my dad would be pleased to know that mum has some financial stability because of the compensation we received.
“We’re very grateful to Unite Legal Services for its support, even though dad’s membership of the union had lapsed. Unite Legal Services helped us when no one else would.”
Annmarie Kilcline, East Midlands regional secretary at Unite the Union, said: “Mesothelioma is a deadly disease and those who contract it should be given as much support as possible at what is an extremely stressful and difficult time for them and their family. Unite Legal Services is there to represent its members when they need it most, and though our member had sadly died before the claim had settled we continued to fight for justice for his family.
“Mesothelioma is the biggest workplace killer in the UK. It’s important that our members and former members know where to turn when they contract the illness. Unite Legal Services has the specialist asbestos litigation expertise to ensure that the maximum compensation is secured for those suffering from the condition.”
Asbestos disease diagnosis? Talk to us for advice and support on how to secure compensation.
If you or a loved one have been diagnosed with an asbestos-related disease, we can support you with advice on how to make a claim.
The process will be explained in plain English and with no obligation – our priority is to provide you with the best, expert advice on whether you have a valid case for compensation, and to signpost you to further sources of support.
There are strict time limits applied to making a claim – usually three years from the date of diagnosis. It doesn’t matter if the exposure to asbestos took place – as it often does – decades ago, the three year time limit applies to the date of knowledge of diagnosis or date of death.
For further information, visit our How to Make A Compensation Claim page.