Can you make a claim for an asbestos-related illness?
Asbestos is a set of naturally occurring silicate minerals that was heavily used in construction up until the 1970s, when many global health bodies issued warnings over its use. It was found that continued and prolonged inhalation of asbestos fibres increased the likelihood of contracting serious and even fatal illnesses such as asbestosis, mesothelioma, lung cancer and pleural thickening. Since the publication of the findings, many countries have banned the use of asbestos outright, and others have seriously restricted its use. Unfortunately, many people across the world are suffering from asbestos-related illnesses as a direct result of working with the substance before bans were put in place.
If you were ever exposed to asbestos during your employment, and are suffering from one of the illnesses mentioned above, you may be entitled to compensation and any government benefits to help you overcome or manage your illness. We understand that following a life-changing diagnosis, you may not be thinking about taking legal action, but it’s important to do so as the compensation you receive could help support you and your family during your treatment.
When should I start the claiming process?
As soon as you are diagnosed with an asbestos-related illness, you should consider legal action, even if you’re not sure when or where you were exposed to asbestos fibres, our team of solicitors can help by investigating your claim fully. As with all compensation claims, you will have to adhere to strict timeframes; you will normally have three years from the date you were first made aware of your illness to bring a claim, otherwise a court may not hear your claim. In some cases a court may grant an extension, but this is not guaranteed, so it’s important to speak with your legal representative as soon as possible.
How do I start an asbestos-related illness claim?
The first thing you need to do is ensure your diagnosis is from an authorised medical professional, once that is complete, you will have the evidence necessary to begin a claim. Once you've made contact with us, our solicitors will speak with you and take a statement detailing everything about the place of employment where you were exposed to asbestos fibres. If you’re still working for the same employer, we will notify them and their insurers and send over the necessary paperwork. You may be required to undergo further respiratory exams at this point, but this differs between cases. Many insurers will offer a compensation package following our investigation, and if we feel this is acceptable, we will agree to take the amount offered and the case will be settled out of court. If we feel the level of compensation offered is unacceptable, we will begin court proceedings and fight to ensure you receive compensation that accurately reflects your illnesses and injuries.
Is there anything I can do to make the claiming process simpler?
Asbestos claims can be complex, and while we aim to make the process as smooth as possible, complications can arise. To make the legal process as simple as possible, it would be beneficial if you could provide us with the following documents if you have them:
Your previous employment history, and where you think you may have been exposed to asbestos;
- The details of any witnesses;
- Your doctor’s contact details and proof of diagnosis;
- Your current financial situation: payslips, P60 etc.;
- Any details of government benefits you’re currently receiving.
Here at Fonseca Law, we understand that you may be confused as to whether you can make an asbestos-related illness claim, but don’t worry. Whether you feel you have a claim or not, please don’t hesitate to contact us today and speak with one of our experienced solicitors. You can call us on 0800 156 0770 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.