Supreme Court rule in favour of asbestos victims.

Date online: 01/06/2012

Local Rochdale victims of asbestos related diseases are now able to join thousands of other sufferers in claiming compensation after a landmark court ruling.

Last week the Supreme Court decided in favour of workers who have died or are dying from exposure to asbestos, placing insurance liability from the time an employee first came into contact with the material and not when the symptoms appeared. The Supreme Court was asked to rule on the issue after some insurance companies refused to accept liability and lower courts failed to agree.

The decision means that insurers of numerous companies are open to claims for compensation from people whose family members have suffered from asbestos related diseases.

One of the diseases, Mesothelioma is a particular vicious form of terminal cancer that develops in the protective lining of the body’s internal organs, usually affecting the lungs or abdomen. Mesothelioma is almost always caused by exposure to asbestos, however, the signs and symptoms may not appear for many years after initial exposure. Unfortunately the survival rate is extremely poor, with around 75 per cent of sufferers dying within one year of diagnosis.

Many Rochdale workers have worked at sites in and around the area where asbestos was present who may have been exposed to the threat of asbestos related diseases. The substance was found at the Ellenroad site and Rochdale was also the home of the Turner Brothers Asbestos factory (latterly Turner & Newall), which at one point was the world’s largest asbestos textile factory.

Peter Rhodes, Senior Partner at local Rochdale law firm Molesworths Bright Clegg who have recently negotiated a substantial settlement for a former Rochdale Council employee who worked at the Ellenroad site as part of a Manpower Services Commission Scheme back in 1986 said:

"The judgement comes at a time when we are seeing a dramatic increase in people suffering from, or have had family members suffer from this terrible disease. These people are not asbestos workers but just people going about their normal everyday jobs, like builders, electricians, plumbers and even teachers, who merely came into contact with asbestos products as a result of their work"

Peter continued:

"As our recent case demonstrates, the symptoms of Mesothelioma can take many years to materialise and although our client contracted the disease back in 1986 it was not until July 2010 that he consulted his doctor after he noticed abnormal abdominal swelling. He was referred to hospital and diagnosed with Mesothelioma of the peritoneum, which is the protective lining of the abdomen. At the time of his diagnosis he was 76 years old, his exposure having occurred some 24 years earlier when he would have been 52.

Our dedicated and experienced team of solicitors were able to successfully settle the claim for a substantial settlement within just ten months of the client first contacting us and we were extremely pleased that we were able to settle this claim for him during what must be a very difficult time for him and his family”

If you or a member of your family have any worries about the possible exposure to asbestos then please do not hesitate to contact us here at Molesworths Solicitors on 01706 356666 and speak to one of our experienced staff.

Media contact: Kelvin Eatherington. Marketing & Business Development Manager

Direct dial: 01706 767407


The contents of this article are intended for general information purposes only and shall not be deemed to be, or constitute legal advice. We cannot accept responsibility for any loss as a result of acts or omissions taken in respect of this article.

Molesworths Bright Clegg is a firm of solicitors established in the United Kingdom and is registered with theSolicitors Regulation Authority.

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