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Personal Injury

Ryan O'Hara


I’m an industrial disease solicitor with almost two decades of experience in handling mesothelioma and other asbestos related injury claims.

Holding slide for male colleague

Get to know Ryan

I began handling asbestos disease claims in 2005 as a trainee solicitor practising almost exclusively in the recovery of compensation for victims of asbestos illnesses and their families. I qualified as a solicitor in 2007 and spent the next five years acting for Claimants at the firm I had trained with. As well as handling my own case load, I assisted a partner with some very complex matters including a successful case which was heard at the Court of Appeal and later at the Supreme Court. In 2012 I joined a Defendant law firm acting for the insurers of companies which had employed those exposed to asbestos. I worked exclusively on a new stream-lined approach to dealing with asbestos claims quickly and without taking an unnecessarily long-winded approach. The aim of this was to ensure that asbestos disease sufferers, especially those with mesothelioma, were compensated quickly. In 2023 I left Defendant practice and returned to representing the victims of asbestos diseases. I have a thorough 360-degree understanding of asbestos disease claims and the litigation which results from disputes involving them. I understand the issues which cause Defendants and their insurers to question claims and I am adept at presenting my clients’ cases in the best light so as to avoid those issues or to credibly deal with them at an early stage. My rare and almost unique experience in the field of asbestos diseases litigation places me at an advantage over many of my peers and equips me to obtain the best results for those I represent.

Career highlights

I acted for the widow of man who had died from asbestosis and whose claim for compensation had been turned down by a competing firm of solicitors on the grounds that the claim should have been brought several years earlier. This specific issue was the subject of a trial where it was successfully argued that the claim should be allowed to proceed even though it was indeed outside the time limit for bringing a claim. This resulted in my client being compensated by the Defendant for the death of her husband.

I also represented a former naval engineer whose negligent employer had gone out of business leaving him facing the prospect of going uncompensated for his asbestos illness. I traced insurance for the said employer, however the insurer refused to accept that they were on cover and denied that they had any liability to my client. This did not deter me and I issued court proceedings to obtain judgment against the employer. Having obtained insurance documents from a physical search of a public archive, proving that the insurer held cover for the company in question, I then brought a case against the insurer to force them to pay compensation to my client.

I took Mrs Willmore’s evidence of asbestos exposure on the successful Supreme Court case of Willmore v Knowsley Metropolitan Borough Council [2011] UKSC 10. Prior to this it had been alleged that she had been exposed to asbestos from other sources though these arguments were abandoned after the new evidence was secured. It was very satisfying to play a significant part in a claim which was decided by the most senior court in England & Wales.

Contact Ryan

Office: Manchester
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