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Father-Of-Three Claims Compensation After Being Exposed To Asbestos In Work

Irwin Mitchell’s specialised Asbestos Related Disease team (ARD) has helped a 77-year-old father-of-three claim compensation, after he was exposed to asbestos during his employment.


Mr H was working at a manufacturer of valve boxes during 1978 to 1982 at the time of his exposure. He was employed as a workshop and engineering manager and split his time between the workshop/office and customer sites. Mr H would spend two or three days a week on customer sites, as it was his job to measure the valves and pipe work which needed to be covered.

Mr H supervised a specialist team of laggers who removed the asbestos lagging from the pipe work so Mr H could gain access to measure up the casing. During this process, the laggers used large hammers and sometimes their own hands to remove the lagging.

This would often create large asbestos dust clouds. The company that Mr H worked for had a very poor regard for health and safety as he was never offered any safety equipment. In fact, Mr H had to purchase his own safety equipment to work on site. No special precautions were ever taken with asbestos and it was treated casually.

In 2009, Mr H began to suffer from shortness of breath and found it difficult to even walk a couple of hundred yards. Mr H visited a doctor and was unfortunately diagnosed with asbestos-related progressive pleural thickening.

Mr H is now totally dependent on a walking stick to get around, which has taken a lot of his independence away. Mr H can no longer perform tasks such as hoovering or putting his shopping away, as he finds himself too short of breath and finds it exhausting.

Mr H and his wife have a large back garden which he used to tend to. He can no longer take care of it and his grandchildren now have to mow the lawn and weed the garden for him during the summer months.

As a result of his condition, Mr H is no longer able to work. This has put increased pressure on Mr H’s wife, as she has not been able to retire as soon as she would have liked.

How Irwin Mitchell Helped 

Mr H decided to contact Irwin Mitchell’s specialist asbestos related disease team and one of our experienced solicitors, Charlotte Hobday, was able to deal with his claim.

Charlotte was able to secure evidence from an expert engineer, who concluded that Mr H was exposed to a high risk of pulmonary injury during the course of his employment. Charlotte also gained expert medical evidence that concluded that Mr H's pleural thickening had progressed since diagnosis and that he suffered from increased breathlessness and lung function decline.

What The Outcome Was

With this evidence, Charlotte was able to secure Mr H £65,000 in provisional damages. This means that Mr H can return to court to increase his compensation if he develops mesothelioma, lung cancer or if his symptoms increase in severity by 20%.

Mr H will be able to use these funds to provide for his future care and purchase equipment, to give him a better quality of life.

Charlotte Hobday, solicitor in the ARD team commented: “I am pleased that we were able to reach a successful conclusion for Mr H and secure compensation that will help to make his life more comfortable. He was given no warnings about the dangers of asbestos and has contracted this debilitating condition through no fault of his own.”

If you or a loved one has been affected by an asbestos related illness, our solicitors can help you to claim compensation. See our Asbestos Claims page for more information.

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