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Asbestos Lawyers Recovers Over £20,000 Of Care Costs For Overgate Hospice

Elland Site To Be Reimbursed For Caring For Mesothelioma Victim


James Clarke, Press Officer | +44 (0)161 838 3169

Specialist lawyers from Irwin Mitchell’s Leeds office have revealed their delight after they recovered costs of over £20,000 for a West Yorkshire hospice which cared for one of its clients prior to his death from mesothelioma.

Father-of-five Douglas Zipfel, who grew up in Bradford, passed away aged 72 in September 2016, four months after he was diagnosed with the cancer of the lining of the lung, which is commonly associated with exposure to asbestos materials.

Prior to his death, Douglas instructed legal experts at Irwin Mitchell to investigate how he developed the illness and his family later continued with the case, with the lawyers securing them a settlement from Redford & Dyson Limited after it was determined that his exposure to asbestos occurred during his time working there between 1984 and 1986.

In the final weeks of his life, Douglas was cared for at Overgate Hospice in Elland and, as result of a landmark case led by Irwin Mitchell in 2010, the lawyers acting for his family have been able to secure funds from the insurer of Redford & Dyson Limited which will reimburse the hospice for the costs of looking after him.

The decision made in a hearing this week means that Irwin Mitchell’s Leeds office has now recovered an estimated £20,000 of hospice care costs across its cases to date, while there are other cases which remain ongoing.

Ian Toft, a Partner in Irwin Mitchell’s Asbestos-Related Disease team in Leeds, said: 

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“Hospices play a hugely important role in many communities and we are delighted that we have been able to give back to a vital organisation like Overgate Hospice in Elland.

“It is an unfortunate truth that many people do not understand the specifics related to the funding of such services, with many hospices being heavily reliant on donations and fundraising efforts by local groups.

“However, by looking to reclaim the cost of care in a legal claim, families are able to give back and say thank you to an organisation which has provided fundamental support to their loved ones at an incredibly difficult time.”
Ian Toft, Partner

Sharon Soulsby, Douglas’s daughter who took over the claim following his death, said: “It was very tough to see how mesothelioma affected Dad, but the help and support of Overgate Hospice proved so important in his final days.

“It is fantastic news that these costs have been recovered for his care and we hope that the funds go some way towards helping others who face the same difficulties in the coming months and years.”

Laura Golding, Director of Income Generation at Overgate Hospice, said: “Douglas’ case is an extremely sad one, and unfortunately we have cared for many people who have suffered similarly.

“The funds secured by Irwin Mitchell will go a long way towards supporting the provision of our care for future patients and we are extremely grateful to Douglas and his family for their support.”

Read more about Irwin Mitchell's expertise in mesothelioma claims.