Mesothelioma compensation claim
A hospice which cared for a former tug boat worker with a fatal asbestos related cancer during his final days has been helped by his family making a compensation claim against his former employers.
Asbestos claims specialists Thompsons Solicitors secured more than £5,000 for EllenorLions Hospices on instructions from Ken Welch’s family.
Mr Welch from Gravesend was cared for by staff at the EllenorLions Hospice in Coldharbour Road, Northfleet, before his death in September 2010.
He suffered from mesothelioma, a disease caused by exposure to asbestos.
Exposed to asbestos at work
He was exposed to asbestos working as a lighterman on the River Thames during the 1960s and 1970s.
Mr Welch, was 69 when he died, leaving behind Margaret, and daughter Nikkita, 24, who still live in Gravesend.
Following his death his family instructed Thompsons Solicitors to investigate a claim for compensation. Mr Welch had made it clear that he wanted the hospice costs included in his claim.
The Department for Business Enterprise and Regulatory Reform settled the claim out of court for substantial damages, including more than £5,000 towards the cost of his care at the hospice.
Exposed to asbestos years ago
Mrs Welch has also donated an additional £3,000 to the hospice.
She said: “Ken was diagnosed with mesothelioma in the July and his condition deteriorated very quickly. It was such a shock to all of us but despite his suffering Ken was determined that the hospice should benefit from his claim to help towards the cost of his care.
“I still find it difficult to come to terms with Ken’s death. He was exposed to asbestos years ago, but it caught up with him and took him at a time when he should have been enjoying his retirement and spending time with his family.”
Anne-Marie Christie from Thompsons Solicitors said: "Mesothelioma is a devastating disease and hospices play an important role in caring for patients with terminal illnesses. Mr Welch felt strongly that the hospice should benefit from his claim and we are pleased we have been able to help his family to fulfil his wishes.“
John Fidgett, from EllenorLions Hospices, said: “Our staff at EllenorLions Hospices work hard to provide an-all encompassing service for our patients. Every week we provide hospice care in the family home for 300 adults and 100 children, and each year 250 people receive in-hospice care at our bedded facility in Northfleet.
“Our services cost around £5m a year but are free of charge to our patients. We very much rely on donations, legacies and fundraising by the local community. This compensation and the donation from Mrs Welch will help us to continue providing these much needed services.”
Asbestos disease diagnosis? Talk to us for advice and support on how to secure compensation.
If you or a loved one have been diagnosed with an asbestos-related disease, we can support you with advice on how to make a claim.
The process will be explained in plain English and with no obligation – our priority is to provide you with the best, expert advice on whether you have a valid case for compensation, and to signpost you to further sources of support.
There are strict time limits applied to making a claim – usually three years from the date of diagnosis. It doesn’t matter if the exposure to asbestos took place – as it often does – decades ago, the three year time limit applies to the date of knowledge of diagnosis or date of death.
For further information, visit our How to Make A Compensation Claim page.