Following the Court of Appeal ruling in Armstrong & Others v British Coal Corporation, a scheme was set up to compensate coal miners who were suffering from the industrial disease vibration white finger (VWF) – now more commonly known as Hand-Arm Vibration Syndrome (HAVS).

Professional Negligence claims for miners

VWF Explained

VWF affects workers who frequently use power tools, such as jack hammers, pneumatic drills, or chainsaws. The powerful vibrations caused by electrical and pneumatic equipment tend to have severe effects on workers' hands, which can progressively get worse over time.

Some common symptoms of the condition include:

  • Whiteness of the fingers
  • A tingling sensation in the fingers
  • Numb fingertips
  • Loss of dexterity

Compensating Those Affected

Even though 170,000 coal miners were paid compensation under the original scheme, a large percentage of them did not claim all that they were entitled to and lost out.

Claims that miners could have made for an additional payment include:

  • Handicap (HOLM) - if you were working or seeking employment and your job prospects were affected as a result of VWF
  • Services – if you needed assistance with tasks around the house, such as gardening, decorating, DIY, window cleaning, car washing, and car maintenance
  • Loss of earnings - if you had to take a lesser paid job because of your hand condition

These various entitlements were worth thousands of pounds.

What Expertise Can Simpson Millar's Professional Negligence Team Offer Me?

Rob Godfrey, a member of the Professional Negligence Lawyers Association and an acknowledged expert in this specialised area, headed up the team who successfully recovered compensation in Barnaby v Raleys and Procter v Raleys.

Both of these cases went to the Court of Appeal where the court upheld the miners' entitlement to compensation and awarded them several thousands of pounds.

Rob has reviewed hundreds of cases from the original scheme and recovered thousands of pounds for coal miners who were wrongly advised and lost out on substantial amounts of compensation.

He has also reviewed many cases handled by other firms claiming to have the expertise required for this area, and found that their mistakes stopped coal miners from receiving their full entitlement.

Can Simpson Millar Help Me?

If you made a claim under the original scheme or tried to make a claim and were told by your firm that you didn't qualify for compensation, we're dedicated to helping you reclaim what is rightfully yours.

Rob Godfrey, the Partner in charge of our specialist Professional Negligence team, is on hand to speak to you about your case, including a no-commitment review of your file. We take on these cases on a no win, no fee basis, so you won't have to worry about any hidden costs.

Please contact us with no obligation on 0808 129 3320 or get in touch through our online enquiry form.

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