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19 April 2016
A former Firmin and Collins carpenter was awarded £500,000 in compensation for exposure to asbestos at work which led to mesothelioma.
Slater and Gordon Lawyer: Edmund Young is a principal lawyer specialising in asbestos-related disease claims at Slater and Gordon Lawyers in London.
What Happened: From 1973 – 1982 our client worked as a carpenter for Firmin and Collins (part of the Trafalgar House/Bridge Walker Group of Companies). During this time he worked in a team of carpenters, decorators and labourers to cut and fit partitions. The work involved cutting partitioning boards of a cement-like material believed to contain asbestos.
Our client worked in the dusty environment for nine-hour days and would sweep up after himself, leaving with his clothes covered in the dust. He was told that the asbestos was harmless, and he was not made aware of the risks of exposure to asbestos during his time at the firm.
Impact: From around October 2011 our client began to suffer breathlessness and consulted his GP in April 2012. He was referred for a chest x-ray in May 2012, which revealed a collapsed left lung. A CT scan revealed fluid in the lung. He was then diagnosed with mesothelioma and has since undergone chemotherapy and surgery.
How Slater and Gordon Helped: A significant claim was made for dependency and loss of services. Considerable steps were taken to trace the relevant employer's liability insurers for the defendant as there had been a number of acquisitions and transfers of the defendant's business - which involved obtaining archived company records. We also had to engage a forensic accountant to quantify the dependency and loss of opportunity claims.
Decision: A settlement of £500,000 was awarded for damages.
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