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Dock Workers Now Able to Receive Compensation from Government for Asbestos Related Illness

Asbestos illness compensation for dock workers


The Court of Appeal has upheld a High Court test case decision that the Government is liable to compensate former dock workers. The test case was brought last year on behalf of a former docker, 65 year old Robert Thompson of Scarisbrick, near Southport, who suffers from a disabling asbestos-related illness, and Winifred Rice of Ormskirk who is the widow of another docker, who died in 2000 aged 67 years.

In last years test case Mr Justice Silber said that labour boards at the ports, which organised the dockers work, were not entitled to pass on all responsibility to the shipping companies that carried the asbestos cargos.

Hundreds of former dock workers can now sue the Government for compensation for asbestos-related illnesses.

A successful appeal would have blocked the dockers' compensation claims. However, this successful appeal decision will now allow hundreds of victims to be compensated by the Government instead of them having to look long and hard to find dock employers to sue, many of whom probably no longer exist.

Leading asbestos illness solicitor comments

Adrian Budgen Head of the Industrial Diseases Group at law firm Irwin Mitchell said "This is a huge victory for the claimants, and other former dock workers, whose lives have been blighted by devastating latent diseases, such as asbestosis and malignant mesothelioma. The DTI should now accept full responsibility for past wrongs and not look for some legal escape route to avoid paying compensation to victims, whose only crime was to breathe the air at work".

Our expert asbestos lawyers will provide you with free initial advice on your compensation claim if you or a loved one has suffered due to an asbestos related illness. See our Asbestos-Related Disease Claims Guide for more information.