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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 50157
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor
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My wife works out in the community and for approx 5 years was

Customer Question

My wife works out in the community and for approx 5 years was based in an office that was rented by her employer.

One of my wife’s co workers, was taken ill and was diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma in 2009

she (my wife’s co worker) contacted a Solicitor in 2010 as she thought that her malignant mesothelioma was brought on by the office that she attended meeting in 2 or 3 times a week up to 2 hours a time,(my wife’s office). The Solicitor contacted my wife’s employer who in turn did a internal investigation and nothing was said to have been found.

In November (2013) last year my wife’s co worker unfortunately passed away and it has now been revealed by Deputy Coroner at the inquest (on Friday 28th Feb 2014) that the post-mortem examination found that the cancer was the cause of death, and due to exposure to asbestos from these premises that the cause of her untimely death was in fact due to industrial disease caused by malignant mesothelioma and said asbestos fibers were found in all samples taken from her lung.

My wife spent most of her time her Monday to Friday for 6 to 7 hours per day and i would like to know if her employer has a case to answer to for companion due to (a) putting her life in danger, (b) not providing a safe environment for her place of work and (c) we will never know if she has contracted the same disease until maybe years down the line.
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 4 years ago.

Ben Jones :

Hello, my name is Ben and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. Does she have any reasons to believe she may also have been affected, like any symptoms?

JACUSTOMER-5xr8vvux- :

Many thanks for your assistance, No she dose not have any symptoms

Ben Jones :

Thanks very much for your patience. There have been many claims arising from such circumstances and there are even lawyers that specialise in pursuing claims arising from asbestosis or that have resulted in mesothelioma. Whilst many employers have been found guilty of negligence and breach of health and safety regulations, before a successful claim can be made the employee would need to show that they have either suffered losses or been injured as a result. So as an example, your wife’s colleague could have certainly made a claim for personal injury after she was diagnosed with the condition. Even after her death, her family could have made a claim on her behalf to pursue the employer.

However, at this stage your wife would not really be able to do anything. Until she knows that she has suffered some damage there is nothing to pursue the employer for. If she eventually gets diagnosed with any condition which can be attributed to the premises she was working in (hopefully that would never happen) then she would have a case to take further with the employer as she would be able to claim under personal injury laws. Until then, with no injuries suffered or any losses attributable to their actions, she cannot really start any claim or seek compensation.

JACUSTOMER-5xr8vvux- :

Many Thanks for your help. but the fact that her employer put these staff in a place of danger to work in is ok? this District Council have obviously covered up their own investigation until the Deputy Coroner uncovered the truth, just dose not seem right.

Ben Jones :

Hello, it is not ok that they put their employees in danger but in terms of compensation a person cannot claim if they have not suffered injury or a loss - you cannot make a claim to 'penalise' the employer for exposing you at risk if no injury or losses have been suffered. That is why a claim would only exist once it is confirmed this has actually occurred

Ben Jones :

Hello, I see you have accessed and read my answer to your query. Please let me know if this has answered your original question or if you need me to clarify anything else for you in relation to this?

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 4 years ago.
Hello Phil, please let me know if I have answered your original question or if you need me to clarify anything else for you in relation to this? Thank you