House of Lords rules against claims of compensation for pleural plaques
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Home > News > Personal Injury News

17th October 2007

House of Lords rules against claims of compensation for pleural plaques

The Law Lords have today rejected an appeal to allow compensation to be awarded to workers, negligently exposed to asbestos, who have been diagnosed with pleural plaques. This confirmed the decision, given in January 2006 by the Court of Appeal, that compensation could not be awarded by overturning a previously established right to claim. This right had existed for over 20 years. In almost all cases of pleural plaques the cause is due to exposure to asbestos through the negligence of an employer.

“This decision is very disappointing for the thousands of people who are living with the worry of knowing that their lungs have been scarred by asbestos. They will be baffled and offended that the House of Lords has decided that pleural plaques is not worthy of any compensation” stated Ian McFall, head of asbestos policy at Thompsons Solicitors. The appeal was backed by the union Unite.

A diagnosis of pleural plaques leaves people with the long-term fear that they may develop fatal asbestos-related diseases in the future. The condition is associated with an increased risk of developing fatal conditions such as mesothelioma and will affect thousands of people already diagnosed with pleural plaques across the UK. Not only does it mean they, and future victims, will no longer be able to claim compensation, but this decision will also provide massive savings for the insurers of companies who knowingly allowed their employees to be exposed to asbestos in the workplace.

Useful Website Links

For more information about the result of the Appeal to the House of Lords regarding compensation for those diagnosed with pleural plaques, please go to any of the following websites.

Times Online - UK
Workers lose fight for asbestos compensation

Guardian Unlimited - UK
Payouts ended for asbestos workers

Greenock Telegraph - Greenock, Scotland, UK
Workers set to lose cash fight

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