Rights of Relatives to Damages Bill - Passed

Mesothelioma victims now entitled to full compensation


The Scottish Parliament passed the Rights of Relatives to Damages (Mesothelioma) (Scotland) Bill on 21st March 2007. This bill means that Mesothelioma sufferers will no longer be inhibited from seeking compensation.

Before this bill was passed sufferers of mesothelioma, an asbestos-related cancer, faced the distressing dilemma of not getting as much compensation whilst alive as their family would get after they had died.

This situation meant that most sufferers did not claim compensation to cover their care and financial losses as it might place their families at a disadvantage.

The Bill allows the immediate family to claim damages, after the mesothelioma sufferer has died, for grief and suffering even if the deceased settled their own claim while alive.

An Executive amendment to the bill, introduced on 20 December 2006, also means that mesothelioma sufferers could, from that date, proceed with their own claim in the knowledge that their families would not be disadvantaged.

Adrian Budgen, Head of Irwin Mitchell's Industrial Diseases Group said: This makes perfect sense as the compensation money is needed as much by the person afflicted by this disease as their relatives. This is a dreadful and incurable form of cancer and all mesothelioma sufferers need to be compensated to ensure that their quality of life is as good as it can possibly be for their remaining days.

We are pleased the Scottish Parliament has taken this very positive step and we hope that all measures are put in place to ensure mesothelioma sufferers are given every opportunity to claim the upfront financial support they and their families desperately need.

If you are concerned about your rights for mesothelioma or asbestos-related compensation, our experts can help. Speak to someone now by calling 0370 1500 100