For all your legal challenges...

We're here to help


Are Your Autumn Years Blighted by Asbestosis? Consult a Solicitor Today

Asbestosis is a curse that condemns many thousands of people to endure pain and loss of independence in old age. No amount of compensation can ever make up for their suffering but, as a High Court case showed, it can at least help them and their loved ones to cope with the ravages of illness.

The case concerned a 74-year-old man who was exposed to asbestos whilst working on the maintenance of heating systems in the 1960s. A man who strongly valued his personal dignity, he had spent his life working hard for his family, performing DIY tasks about the house and maintaining the garden of his home.

After he was diagnosed with asbestosis, however, debilitating breathlessness forced him to adopt a sedentary lifestyle. Spending his time indoors, his heating bills went up and he became increasingly dependent on his wife's assistance. He needs costly aids and equipment, including oxygen canisters and dehumidifiers.

After proceedings were launched on his behalf, judgment was entered against the company that employed him during the period of exposure. There was, however, a continuing dispute as to the value of his claim and the extent to which other health conditions unconnected to asbestos contributed to his disabilities.

Ruling on the matter, the Court rejected claims that the extent of his reliance on his wife's care and assistance had been exaggerated. His level of disability had been assessed at 55 per cent, of which 25 per cent was due to asbestosis. The latter percentage was likely to increase to 30 per cent as he grew older. His life expectancy had been cut short by some months.

The Court awarded him £55,000 in damages for his pain, suffering and loss of amenity. Awards were also made in recognition of, amongst other things, his wife's gratuitous care for him, equipment costs, increased utility bills and the loss of his DIY and gardening services to his family. His overall award exceeded £100,000.