Victory for families of asbestos-related cancer

Daily Echo: Victory for families of asbestos-related cancer Victory for families of asbestos-related cancer

RELATIVES of workers who died of an asbestos-related cancer won a compensation fight at the Supreme Court today.

Judges ruled that insurance liability was ''triggered'' when employees were exposed to asbestos dust - not when symptoms of mesothelioma emerged.

Legal experts say the ruling by the UK's highest court means that employers' insurers will have to pay compensation claims.

Relatives of victims want to make claims on policies from the late 1940s to the late 1990s.

Families started a legal fight for compensation more than five years ago and lawyers say the Supreme Court ruling could affect thousands of claims.

Relatives won the first round of their battle in 2008, when the High Court said firms' insurers at the time workers inhaled fibres were liable.

But two years later the Court of Appeal said in some cases liability was triggered when symptoms developed - sometimes decades after exposure.

Lawyers said the appeal court ruling had left victims' families facing ''confusion and uncertainty''.

A panel of five Supreme Court justices had heard argument about a group of lead cases at a hearing in London in December and delivered judgement today.

The Supreme Court ruled that the disease could be said to have been ''sustained'' by an employee in the period when it was caused or initiated, even though it only developed or manifested itself later.

Lord Clarke said: ''The negligent exposure of an employee to asbestos during the policy (insurance) period has a sufficient causal link with subsequently arising mesothelioma to trigger the insurer's obligation.''

Comments (3)

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6:03pm Wed 28 Mar 12

Ant Smoking MP says...

Why just print half the story? This was won by Unite the Union.
.
http://www.unitetheu
nion.org/news__event
s/latest_news/justic
e_for_asbestos_victi
ms_a.aspx
.
But why should the Echo print anything good unions do. At least we have a Sea City museum to take our minds of of things!!
Why just print half the story? This was won by Unite the Union. . http://www.unitetheu nion.org/news__event s/latest_news/justic e_for_asbestos_victi ms_a.aspx . But why should the Echo print anything good unions do. At least we have a Sea City museum to take our minds of of things!! Ant Smoking MP

8:40pm Wed 28 Mar 12

TEBOURBA says...

Well said Ant Smoking.
I lost a dear friend last year who worked in Southampton Docks,and used to be covered in asbestos dust, day in and day out, so much so that his poor wife contracted asbestosis simply by washing his overalls.
Why did the legislation take so long? -- because the capitalist establishment were being hit in their pockets -- if you are a capitalist that's where it hurts the most!!
Thank God for the Unions , if it weren't for them, small boys would still be sent up chimneys and agricultural or any other workers who dared to question their masters would be transported or imprisoned.
Well said Ant Smoking. I lost a dear friend last year who worked in Southampton Docks,and used to be covered in asbestos dust, day in and day out, so much so that his poor wife contracted asbestosis simply by washing his overalls. Why did the legislation take so long? -- because the capitalist establishment were being hit in their pockets -- if you are a capitalist that's where it hurts the most!! Thank God for the Unions , if it weren't for them, small boys would still be sent up chimneys and agricultural or any other workers who dared to question their masters would be transported or imprisoned. TEBOURBA

12:39am Thu 29 Mar 12

Poppy22 says...

This shouldn't have even got to court. It's a basic insurance principle in my view and there are enough class action asbestos cases on the US legal books for this to have been a no-brainer.
As always, it's the sufferers and their families that have to suffer even more trying to get what they are fully entitled to.
I agree regarding the Union in this instance - we need to see more about the fights they're doing and winning, not just strikes that we may or may not agree with.
This shouldn't have even got to court. It's a basic insurance principle in my view and there are enough class action asbestos cases on the US legal books for this to have been a no-brainer. As always, it's the sufferers and their families that have to suffer even more trying to get what they are fully entitled to. I agree regarding the Union in this instance - we need to see more about the fights they're doing and winning, not just strikes that we may or may not agree with. Poppy22

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