What do you have to prove to win? In order to get compensation you have to prove that you had exposure to asbestos at a time when you ought not to have been and that your mesothelioma was caused by asbestos fibres. It has been known for many decades that asbestos was dangerous and from the mid 1960's that it caused mesothelioma even after breathing only small amounts of asbestos dust.
Mesothelioma is almost always due to asbestos exposure. A solicitor will be able to advise you as to prospects of winning.
What will your claim be worth? Compensation does not compensate for what has been lost but it can and does make a difference. The aim of compensation is to put you in the same financial position as though you hadn't developed mesothelioma. Although the amount awarded in each case is different, the amount of compensation is usually substantial. Younger people who are in work with dependants are likely to get much more than an older person on a small pension.You will probably get at least £100,000 and often more than that.
How long should your case take to conclude? Mesothelioma cases should be dealt with swiftly. There are fast track procedures in courts to allow cases to be concluded within 3-6 months of contacting a solicitor. Some cases will take longer than this if complications arise. Your solicitor should advise you if your case has unusual features which may mean it will take longer.
Can you get compensation if my employer has gone out of business? If your former employers insurance company can be traced then you can claim against them. Alternatively it may be possible to bring the claim against some other party for example, the occupier of the site where you worked.Or your solicitor may advise you to make an application under the Diffuse Mesothelioma Payment Scheme (DMPS). In order to apply you have to have mesothelioma diagnosed after 25 July 2012, the employer who exposed you negligently must be out of business and their insurance untraceable. Their website is mesoscheme.org.uk
Can you get compensation after your husband or wife has died? Yes. You will be able to bring a similar compensation claim in the courts.
What are the time limits for bringing a claim? A claim should be brought within 3 years of the date of diagnosis or within 3 years of the date of death. However, if there are good reasons as to why the claim was not brought in time then it may be possible to bring a successful claim but you need to get legal advice quickly.
How are your legal fees met? If the case is successful then the person paying your compensation will also pay your legal costs. If your case is unsuccessful then you shouldn't have to pay a bill.You must check with your solicitor that this is the position.
Will you have to go to court? The vast majority of cases settle before you get to court. However, court proceedings should be started to put pressure on the defendants to settle, you may even get a date for trial. There is likely to be opportunity for your solicitor to apply to the court to get a decision about whether the defendant should pay you compensation before trial.This is known as the 'show cause' procedure.
Disclaimer: Mesothelioma UK does not accept any responsibility relating to the appointment of a law firm.