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Abestos Related Illnesses

Asbestos Related Illnesses

Industrial Diseases – A Legal Point of View

Swindon Solicitor Calls For Re-Think After Scottish Asbestos Ruling

Swindon solicitor, Brigitte Chandler, has called for consistent legislation across the UK following today’s (12th) decision in the Scottish courts which continues to allow people with an asbestos related illness to claim compensation.

“It is ridiculous that we have one rule for Scotland and Ireland – and one rule for England,” says Brigitte Chandler, a solicitor with Charles Lucas & Marshall and one of the UK’s leading specialists in asbestos related litigation. “We are in an absurd position and the Government needs to recognise this.

Insurers had been trying to overturn the law in Scotland which allows people with pleural plaques, a scarring of the lungs, to claim compensation. Insurers had argued that the law was ‘flawed’.

However, the Scottish Court of Session today upheld the decision by the Scottish Parliament which allows people with pleural plaques to sue employers if they develop the condition due to exposure to asbestos at work.

While pleural plaques do not cause symptoms, they signal the presence of asbestos fibres that could trigger life-threatening conditions such as mesothelioma or asbestosis.

In October 2009, the Damages (Asbestos Related Conditions) Bill which aimed to allow people in England also to claim compensation for pleural plaques was passed by the House of Commons and sent up to the House of Lords. However, the Bill ran out of time during the parliamentary session – leaving thousands of claimants in limbo.

“We need consistency across Britain,” said Brigitte Chandler. “It is wholly wrong that someone living in Glasgow can receive compensation when someone else, living only miles away cannot.

“For many years people in England with pleural plaques, caused by exposure to asbestos, did receive compensation,” says Brigitte Chandler. “The decision by the House of Lords to over-turn this was an enormous blow.”

“We need to keep the pressure on the Government so that the issue does not go away. “We have a large number of clients with pleural plaques still hoping they can make a claim. Obviously, anyone with more serious asbestos related disease such as lung cancer, asbestosis or diffuse pleural thickening can bring a claim now.”

Please contact Brigitte Chandler on 01793 511055 or brigitte.chandler@clmlaw.co.uk

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Brigitte Chandler
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Brigitte Chandler

April 19th, 2011 at 6:48 pm

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