Pleural Plaques Compensation – be realistic, not optimistic

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It has been a long battle for victims of the asbestos-related disease pleural plaques. But now pleural plaques sufferers are hopeful that they may be able to claim compensation even if their pleural plaques compensation claim wasn’t submitted in time.

In 2007 a Law Lords ruling prevented sufferers of pleural plaques from claiming compensation for the asbestos-related disease usually contracted through jobs which have exposed the sufferer to asbestos in the workplace.

However, the Jarrow MP Stephen Hepburn has raised the pleural plaques compensation claim issue in the Commons insisting that, should new medical evidence come forward proving a direct link between pleural plaques and exposure to asbestos, then victims should be entitled to claim compensation.

Labour MP Mr Hepburn is pushing the present coalition government to overturn the 2007 judgment saying: "If new medical evidence emerges which suggests that the existence of pleural plaques is an actionable cause and that the condition counts as compensatable damage, it will be open to claimants to pursue an action."

However, here at Simpson Millar we have to remain realistic regarding pleural plaques compensation claims. At present it is doubtful that such new evidence will come to light and we feel that sufferers of pleural plaques may be being given false hope. It is a very sad situation for those whose health has been damaged by exposure to asbestos leading to pleural plaques, but we would not be confident in taking any compensation claim forward at this time.

We will keep a close eye on any developments in this story and do acknowledge that anything is possible. However, on balance, we would advise people suffering from pleural plaques not to be too optimistic as to the outcome of Mr Hepburn’s campaign on their behalf.

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