Expert Lawyers Secure Justice For Heartbroken Family Who Lost Dad To Asbestos-Related Cancer

Vital Evidence Uncovered By Irwin Mitchell From Old Newspaper Advert


Expert lawyers at Irwin Mitchell have helped a family secure justice following the death of their dad to an asbestos-related cancer after unearthing an old newspaper advert confirming the material was used by the company despite continuous denials from his old employer.

Grandfather-of-eight, Michael Wareham, from Rickmansworth, died of mesothelioma, a cancer in the lining of the lungs caused by inhaling deadly asbestos dust, aged 73.

Before his death, Michael instructed industrial illness experts at law firm Irwin Mitchell as he remembered that he was regularly exposed to the dust when he worked at the Watford Timber Co Ltd in the 1950s and 1960s as a joiner and machinist cutting asbestos sheets.

After his death in May 2010 his family vowed to continue the battle for justice he began and lawyers have now secured the family an undisclosed five-figure settlement for their loss from the company’s insurers.

Throughout the proceedings, Watford Timber co Ltd strenuously denied the presence of asbestos, maintaining: “that no such product was ever in use”. However, during investigations, lawyers unearthed an advert in a 1953 West Herts & Watford Observer showing that the Watford Timber Co did stock asbestos at their St Alban’s Road site in Watford.

Shaheen Mosquera, an asbestos expert at Irwin Mitchell’s London office, who represented the family, said: “We are pleased to have secured justice for this family following a long fought battle with the company where Michael worked. The evidence which came to light proved that Michael had been exposed to the deadly dust during his employment and that there was no valid defence.

“Mesothelioma is an aggressive disease for which there is sadly no cure. It devastates families yet companies have been aware of the dangers since the 1950s and 60s so there is no excuse for not warning employees or protecting them.”

Michael developed breathlessness in April 2009 and two months later doctors gave him the devastating news he was suffering from the terminal cancer, mesothelioma, which is caused by exposure to asbestos.

He died after a 13-month battle with the disease and the coroner recorded a verdict of industrial disease, death caused by malignant mesothelioma, at an inquest in June 2010.

Michael’s son, Carl, 51, from Rickmansworth, said: “We are so pleased and relieved that we have now honoured my dad’s wishes and secured justice for him. The team at Irwin Mitchell left no stone unturned for my dad and we are grateful that the claim has concluded.

“We were completely heartbroken when dad received his diagnosis. He was a very active man who was massively into sport until he became so ill. It was so difficult to watch him struggle in the months before his death. He always lived life to the full and he became a shadow of his former self.

“He was such a good father and grandfather and now the legal battle is over, we feel that we can start to come to terms with his death.”