UK’s MPs support plaques campaign06 February 2009
Campaign for compensation for pleural plaques victims
MPs from across the UK have put their weight behind a campaign to compensate people diagnosed with pleural plaques.
An Early Day Motion in the House of Commons has attracted signatures from 130 MPs from as far afield as Newcastle to Essex.
The Early Day Motion calls on a reversal of the Law Lords decision that has deprived pleural plaques sufferers of much needed compensation.
It also states that members are alarmed that Pamela Abernathy from the Forum of Insurance Lawyers said ‘plaques are a good thing and do not cause harm’.
Exposed to asbestos in the workplace
Thousands of people in the North East have pleural plaques. Most were exposed to asbestos in the workplace at a time when employers were fully aware of the harmful effects and did nothing to protect workers.
Many people with pleural plaques tell of the worry and uncertainty it causes knowing that one day they may develop asbestos cancer.
Thousands of workers across the UK have been on tenterhooks since the House of Lords ended the right to compensation for pleural plaques in 2007 as a result of a test case brought by the insurance industry.
Before then average awards of between £5,000 to £15,000 were made for pleural plaques with the first successful cases being decided in 1984.
Call for Government to reinstate compensation for pleural plaques
Following pressure from the unions last year the Government held a consultation looking at a number of different options to bring redress to people diagnosed with pleural plaques. The results of that consultation were expected to be revealed last year.
The MPs who signed the EDM have called for the Government to reinstate compensation for people with pleural plaques and to make an announcement without further delay.
Thompsons Solicitors who represent hundreds of people with pleural plaques are supporting the campaign. Ian McFall, head of asbestos policy at Thompsons said: “People with pleural plaques have been harmed because they went to work with no protection in conditions which were dangerous. The Law Lords dismissed their claims while saving the insurers a fortune. The Government has a responsibility to do what is fair and just by restoring the right to compensation. Ultimately it’s a question of social justice.”
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.