Making an industrial disease claim

How long will my claim take?

If your claim is straightforward and the employer is still in business and the insurer is traced and there is good evidence of exposure to asbestos then the claim can proceed under the Royal Courts of Justice Fast Track Procedure.

This is a unique procedure for mesothelioma claims. The Judges that hear the cases are specialists. The burden of proof is reversed so that the Defendant must come to the first hearing and show cause why Judgment should not be entered.

If Judgment is entered then it is usual for an interim payment to be awarded of £50,000.

The case will then come quickly to a final hearing.

Those cases, which are not straightforward, will take longer as it may be necessary to apply to reinstate defunct companies or to gather exposure evidence and expert opinion on breach of duty and state of knowledge.

You will be kept informed and provided with time estimates throughout the claim.

What will I need to do to be able to win my claim?

The first thing you need to do is to prove the facts of your case.
You will need to give evidence about your full employment history and all exposures to asbestos.
You will need to prove that for cases prior to 1965 that you were exposed to substantial levels of asbestos fibres and for cases after 1965 to significant levels of asbestos.
You will need to prove that the exposures to asbestos fibres were as a result of the negligence of your employer. The employer should have taken all reasonably practicable steps to reduce the risk to you of exposure to asbestos.
The employer must have materially increased your risk of mesothelioma and that it was reasonable foreseeable at that time and to that employer that the exposure might cause you to be injured.
The starting point is to appoint a specialist solicitor to bring your claim. The solicitor will begin the claim by asking you to tell your story – this is the first of many building blocks and the single most important part of your evidence.
If you wish to discuss a possible claim please contact us on

What level of compensation will I receive?

Awards for compensation are broken down into 2 categories.
The first is the award for general damages. This includes the claim for pain, suffering and loss of amenity.
The amount of compensation will be determined by reference to the medical evidence and the witness statements about the injuries suffered, treatments and prognosis.
The Judge will decide the amount of the award or this will be agreed between the parties. There are Judicial College Guidelines written to assist the Judge and solicitors.
The current guidance for mesothelioma claims is £50,000 to £90,000 for pain, suffering and loss of amenity.
In addition to this you are entitled to claim special damages for all those financial losses that can be quantified mathematically. This includes loss of earnings and pension, cost of care, travel and medication, treatment costs and estate expenses.
We will also look at any claim for the loss of the benefit of services that you have provided to your dependants.
It is often the case that special damages can be greater than the award for general damages. Each case is individual and needs to be carefully quantified by a specialist.

How do I choose a solicitor?

A diagnosis of asbestos related disease, particularly mesothelioma or lung cancer is devastating to the victim and to his or her family. Britain has the highest incidence of mesothelioma deaths in the world and the toll is rising. Often cases are not straightforward and time is of the essence. It is vital that you instruct the best team of lawyers to represent you.

  • You need a specialist firm of personal injury solicitors with experience and expertise in acting for victims of mesothelioma and asbestos related injury claims.
  • You need independent and impartial advice.
  • You need a free initial consultation.
  • You need to feel confident in contacting your solicitor to discuss your situation without fear of incurring any cost to you.

To take that first step call Caroline on 02076533208.

Who can I talk to?

We are hear to listen to you and to help you to tell your story. We have a long history of helping victims of asbestos related diseases and we are here for you and your family.

There are also a number of charities and support groups that can provide support and information to you. Below are details of organisations that maybe of interest to you: –

Asbestos Victims Support Groups Forum UK

Charities and Trust


How can I tell my story, to help others?

We learn from what has happened in the past and to others. Sharing your story may help another person in a similar situation. Lessons can also be learnt that help with preventing unnecessary exposure to asbestos. The only way to know how many people are affected by asbestos related conditions is to share our experiences. If you wish to share you story please go to “Your Stories”. We can work with you to ensure that your story is shared sensitively and if necessary anonymously with others.

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Our Team

Jane Radcliffe

Managing Partner & Head of York Office

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Frances McCarthy

Senior Partner & Head of Personal Injury

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Gary Lightwood

Head of Bristol Office

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