Asbestos is the name for a group of silicate minerals made from microscopic fibers. This material has been in use for centuries, but became prevalent in the UK construction and fire-safety industries during the early to mid 1900s due to its strength and fire-resistant properties. Typically, it was used in cement and plaster, industrial furnaces, insulation, ceiling tiles, house siding and vehicle parts like brake pads and clutches.
When these fibres remain intact, they pose very little threat. However, when damaged, the fibres begin to break apart and travel through the air. Exposure to these fibres can cause fibrosis of the lungs, making it hard to breathe and leading to diseases such as Asbestosis, Mesothelioma, Lung Cancer, Pleural Thickening and Pleural Plaques. In 2015, there were an astonishing 2,542 Mesothelioma deaths recorded and a similar number of lung cancer deaths linked to Asbestos exposure in the same year.
Although the use of Asbestos was banned in the UK in 1999, the effects of the industrial-scale use is still being felt today and it’s the loved ones of those who were exposed to the material who still suffer. Although many of the businesses that dealt with Asbestos have nowstopped trading, there is still a course of action you can take if you or a loved one suffer froman Asbestos related disease.
Compensation can never atone for what has been lost, but it can help to make a difference. The amount for each case is totally different, but it’s often substantial and regularly over £100,000. A claim should be brought within three years of diagnosis of an asbestos-related illness, or three years from the date of death. However, even if a claim is brought after that time period, it’s always worth making a claim. If extenuating circumstances for the delay can be proven, then compensation may still be awarded.
If the employer has ceased trading – even if they closed decades ago – there is still a way for you to claim compensation. When a former employers’ insurance company can be traced, it is possible to make a claim against them. If that’s impossible, there are still avenues for you to pursue. One option is to claim against another party or site affiliated with the employer, or a solicitor can help you make an application to the Diffuse Mesothelioma Payment Scheme (DMPS). There are certain parametres here, but you will be able to consult an solicitor with agood track record in this field on those particulars.
Keenan Solicitors are expert solicitors, based in Northern Ireland, providing advice and representation in the fields of personal injury, property, family law and wills.
We are one of the leading Asbestos Disease compensation providers in Northern Ireland and have a track record in winning cases, even when the business has stopped trading; sometimes decades earlier. For more information, contact us today and find out how you canmake a claim.