Witness Appeal For Young Mother Diagnosed With Mesothelioma


The Law Of… Helping Mesothelioma Sufferers

Helen Grady – Partner in Simpson Millar's Industrial Disease team and expert in asbestos-related claims – is appealing for information from the Devon area, to help her find justice for a young mother who is very ill from the asbestos-related illness mesothelioma.

Helen's client, Kirsty List, has been given just months to live and is still trying to establish the source of her asbestos exposure so that she can claim compensation and leave a trust fund to her young daughter.

Aged just 34 years-old Kirsty is one of the youngest examples of mesothelioma in Simpson Millar's history, leading Helen to believe that she may have been exposed during her education, as the latency period of asbestos-related illnesses mean that diagnosis normally occurs 10 – 50 years after exposure.

She is now appealing for witnesses from some of the suspected sources of Kirsty's exposure to try and establish the presence of asbestos.

Multiple Sources Of Exposure

Kirsty, who was diagnosed with mesothelioma when she was only 32 – the average age for diagnosis is 60 – could have been exposed throughout her youth and Helen is attempting to clarify some reports she has already received to build a strong enough case to seek compensation for Kirsty's family.

The family moved to Devon in the late 1990s, with Kirsty attending Holsworthy Community College for a year in 1998.The age of the buildings at the secondary school would suggest that asbestos could have been present and we have already had reports that the temporary classrooms and huts contained asbestos ceilings and side panels.

Another possible exposure for Kirsty in Devon was the Bicton Agricultural College in East Budleigh, which Kirsty attended in 1999 before the college underwent a refurbishment; other witnesses have confirmed asbestos at this site.

After completing her academic career, Kirsty worked in a number of pubs throughout the South West and some of these old buildings were undergoing refit and refurbishment where asbestos could have been disturbed.

Devon residents who attended Holsworthy Community College or Bicton College are encouraged to come forward and contact Helen Grady, as your evidence could help prove Kirsty's case.

Compensation For Mesothelioma

Helen has already helped Kirsty secure compensation through the Government's automatic Diffuse Mesothelioma Payment Scheme, which ensures a lump sum payment to sufferers of mesothelioma while the source of asbestos is being sought for a civil claim. This payment will be returned to the Government on completion of a civil claim.

The money received from this government scheme has been placed in a trust fund for Aimee, Kirsty's five-year-old daughter, however finding the source of exposure could help secure Aimee's future.

Discussing the tragic case Helen said:

"This is such a sad case of a young mother having to know that she will be leaving behind her daughter and we are racing against time to ensure that the proper provisions are in place for Aimee before this debilitating asbestos illness takes Kirsty's life."

"Being diagnosed at 32, this is the youngest mesothelioma case that I, or any of my colleagues, have been instructed on. The most common source for asbestos exposure is the workplace and – due to the needle like asbestos fibres remaining dormant in the lung lining for many decades – the average age of diagnosis is around 60."

"The current evidence in this case suggests that we are dealing with exposure from 1998 and onwards, which shows that while diagnosis often comes 25 to 40 years after exposure there are cases where there is a shorter latency period of 10 to 20 years."

"This story just serves to underline the importance of removing asbestos safely from public buildings, which is a process that has currently stalled but is crucial if we want to ensure that children and teachers are safe in these institutions of care."

"I really hope that former students, teachers, or maintenance workers from any of the schools and colleges that Kirsty attended will be able to remember the condition of school buildings at any time during the 1990s as their statement could help move our case forward and secure a future for Kirsty's dependents."

"If you think you can help Kirsty please contact me directly on Freephone 0808 129 3320 or 0751 557 9870, alternatively you can email me on helen.grady@simpsonmillar.co.uk."

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