Silicosis And Pneumoconiosis Claims In The UK
Welcome to our guide on pneumoconiosis claims. If you’re suffering from a lung disease, such as acute silicosis or black lung disease, you may want to see if you can receive compensation. These conditions are often caused by exposure to particular work environments. In most instances, they take a long time to develop.
Your employer has a duty of care towards you and is responsible for ensuring your health and wellbeing while at work. If your employer breaches this duty of care and you’re injured or become ill as a result, you may be able to claim; this guide can help.
Compensation Claims For Pneumoconiosis
We can help you by answering important questions like:
- In what instances can I claim for an industrial disease?
- How do I make a personal injury claim?
- How can a personal injury claims calculator help me?
- What are the potential complications that can arise from developing conditions like silicosis?
- What is the personal injury claims time limit?
- How can I prove employer liability?
- How can a No Win No Fee personal injury solicitor from our panel help you receive compensation?
To find out more about how you can claim for lung diseases caused by things such as exposure to asbestos or coal dust, please read on. Alternatively, you can call one of our advisors for free legal advice using the details below.
Get In Touch With Our Team
Our advisors are available 24/7, so you can contact them at a time that suits you. They offer free legal advice and can confirm with you in just a few minutes if you’re eligible to claim. They can also put you through to one of our panel of solicitors that could help you. If you choose to use one, a personal injury lawyer could help you receive thousands of pounds in compensation. Please get in touch with us today by calling 020 3870 4868 or using our online contact form.
Services And Information
- Everything You Need To Know About Silicosis And Pneumoconiosis Claims
- What Is Silicosis And Pneumoconiosis?
- Symptoms Of Silicosis And Pneumoconiosis
- What Could Cause Pneumoconiosis?
- Treatment And Diagnosis
- Pneumoconiosis Claims Compensation Calculator
- What Are The Risk Factors Of Developing Pneumoconiosis?
- Who Could You Make A Damages Claim Against?
- The Coal Industry Pneumoconiosis Compensation Scheme
- Who Could Make A Claim Through The Coal Workers Scheme?
- Silicosis And Pneumoconiosis Claims Time Limits
- No Win No Fee Silicosis And Pneumoconiosis Claims
- Other Information
- FAQs On Pneumoconiosis Claims
Pneumoconiosis is usually caused by working in industries such as demolition and construction, manufacturing and mining. This is because, in these kinds of industries, you may find yourself breathing in harmful dust and other substances.
This guide will explain the different types of lung diseases you may be looking to claim for and how they could occur. Furthermore, we will illustrate the instances in which you may be able to claim successfully.
We will also examine what No Win No Fee agreements are and how they could help you fund legal representation. We’ll look at the time limits to making this kind of claim and will conclude by answering some commonly asked questions about these kinds of claims.
If you have any questions about silicosis and pneumoconiosis claims and when your claim could be valid, don’t hesitate to speak to our team today. Otherwise, read on to find out more.
Pneumoconioses are a group of interstitial lung diseases caused by inhaling certain types of dust. Over a period of time, the lungs can react negatively to the prolonged exposure to dust, which could result in one of three conditions developing. They are:
The conditions differ depending on the type of dust you’ve been exposed to. For instance, silicosis is caused by inhaling crystalline silica dust, which is found in certain types of rock, stone, sand and clay. Asbestosis, meanwhile, can be caused by long-term exposure to asbestos. Asbestos was a material used for insulation in buildings during the 1970s and 1980s.
Pneumoconiosis is often caused by coal mine dust, meaning that you could develop this condition from working in a mine without adequate protection from dust over the course of many years. As the condition worsens, your quality of life could be severely affected. In some cases, you may be unable to work. It could also negatively affect your mental health because of the impact the disease has on your ability to carry out daily tasks.
Although these conditions differ in that they are caused by different materials being breathed in, they share many similar symptoms. These include:
- Shortness of breath
- Persistent cough
- General weakness and tiredness
If the condition worsens, then the symptoms might become more severe. In some cases, those who suffer from these symptoms are likely to become more severe. Sufferers could even become housebound if their symptoms stop them from climbing stairs or walking about.
As well as the main symptoms of these illnesses, they can also increase your risk of contracting other life-threatening conditions. You may be more at risk of chest infections, heart failure, kidney disease and lung cancer.
Call our advisors for free legal advice today using the phone number at the top of this page to see if you’re eligible to claim.
Pneumoconiosis is caused by prolonged exposure to coal dust. Factors that could affect your likelihood of contracting this disease may include:
- The number of hours you’ve worked
- How often you’re exposed to the substance that could make you ill
- Whether you’ve been given Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), and if so, how effective it is
These are also potential factors for developing silicosis. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) analyses British workplaces and provides statistics and guidance in relation to keeping workers as safe as possible. Regarding silicosis, it has been found that you have an increased risk of developing it while working in industries such as:
- Concrete product manufacturing
- Slate mining
- Construction and demolition processes
- Refractory production and cutting
You could also develop a particularly aggressive form of the disease called acute silicosis. This is caused by being exposed to a large amount of silica across a period of weeks or months.
Specific activities that could result in you developing an industrial disease of this nature include:
- Grinding, drilling and cutting
- Shovelling dry material
- Conveying and polishing
You could contract a lung condition if inadequate training meant that you didn’t know how to perform the task safely. In order for you to make a claim, you would need to show that you became ill because your employer breached their duty of care towards you and that this resulted in you becoming ill. If it happened because of your own negligence- for instance, because you refused to wear PPE that you were supplied with, you would not be able to claim.
In order for the coal miner’s pneumoconiosis claims process to begin, you would need to receive a diagnosis. Because of how slowly the symptoms develop, you may no longer be employed by the negligent employer when you claim. You may, for example, be retired before you’re aware of the illness at all.
Conditions such as pneumoconiosis and silicosis tend can be diagnosed through the following procedures:
- A chest X-ray may be performed to help assess the level of damage and see any abnormalities. This can help determine if, for example, lung cancer has developed due to the condition.
- A CT scan
- Spirometry, which involves breathing into a machine to help assess how your lungs are functioning.
Lung tissue damage cannot be reversed, meaning that the symptoms are permanent. Because of this, treatment tends to revolve around minimising your discomfort and pain.
Even after it’s been diagnosed, your condition can still worsen. This means that over time, you may find it harder to breathe. You could be offered long-term oxygen therapy if this is the case.
In certain instances, you may be able to receive a lung transplant. However, you need to fit certain requirements in order to be offered this kind of procedure.
To see if you could be eligible to claim with a solicitor from our panel on a No Win No Fee basis, please call us using the phone number at the top of this page.
While doing research into pneumoconiosis claims, you may be wondering how much compensation you could receive. When making a personal injury claim, there are two potential heads of claim. They are:
- General Damages – relating to the physical damage, emotional distress and general decline to your quality of life.
- Special Damages – relating to the financial losses caused by the injury you’ve suffered.
You can potentially claim special damages if you’ve suffered a financial loss due to the injury. This can also accommodate for financial losses you could experience in the future. For instance, you may have to retire early due to the damage caused by pneumoconiosis or have to take time off work for treatment. If your claim is successful, you could receive money for loss of earnings as part of the compensation.
You will need evidence to prove the compensation you’re looking to claim. This can include things like receipts, invoices, and bank statements. During the claims process, a medical assessment will be conducted to ascertain the degree of your injury and to confirm that it was caused by employer negligence.
What you could receive for general damages compensation
The Judicial College has produced a document of compensation brackets for a wide range of different injuries. These are based on past compensation awards that have been made.
To help you better understand what you could receive, we’ve included a table below. This includes relevant injuries and their respective general damages compensation brackets. The Judicial College has supplied these figures.
|Type of Injury||Amount of Compensation||Description|
|Lung Disease||£94,470 to £127,530||This bracket is for a young person that is experiencing severe disability due to the lung disease. There is a high chance that the disease will worsen causing a premature death.|
|Lung Disease||£65,710 to £91,350||Injuries in this bracket include lung cancer, usually in older people, leading to extreme pain causing severe declines in both quality of life and general function.|
|Lung Disease||£51,420 to £65,710||Diseases such as emphysema, silicosis and pneumoconiosis, causing significant decline in lung function and impairment of breathing.|
|Lung Disease||£29,380 to £51,460||This bracket includes injuries or diseases that cause breathing difficulties requiring the use of an inhaler, having a significant effect on working and social life.|
For more information about making pneumoconiosis claims, including how we can provide you with a reliable estimate, please give us a call. Our advisors can go through our personal injury claims calculator over the phone with you.
This means that they can provide you with a reliable compensation estimate in just a few minutes. To value your claim and see if you can be put through to a personal injury solicitor from our panel, call us using the phone number at the top of this page.
Risk factors that could cause you to develop pneumoconiosis include:
- Working in an industry such as construction. This could mean that you’re working in an environment that is above the recommended exposure limit to dust.
- Wearing unsafe PPE, or no PPE at all.
- Working in a poorly ventilated area.
- Not having regular medical checks.
- Not washing your hands and face before eating or touching your face.
In some cases, however, you may already be ill by the time your symptoms become apparent. You may not be working for the same employer, or even in the same industry, by the time you realise you are ill. However, you can still claim against a former employer.
It usually takes a long time to develop after exposure. For instance, silicosis usually only develops after 10-20 years of silica exposure but can sometimes occur after 5-10 years. In some cases, and if the exposure is very heavy, it only takes a few months for silicosis to develop.
For more insight and statistics about pneumoconiosis, please visit the British Lung Foundation website. For legal advice, give UK Law a call. One of our advisors could help you start the claims process today.
You may be wondering, “In pneumoconiosis claims, who do I claim against?”. If your employer’s negligence meant that you were exposed to the substances that made you ill, then you will be able to claim from them.
The Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 and The Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002 (COSHH) highlight your employer’s obligations in this regard. For more information about this, refer to the HSE website.
You cannot be sacked for making a claim for a workplace illness if you’ve been employed for more than 2 years. If you were dismissed because you pursued compensation, you could make a separate claim for unfair or constructive dismissal.
Furthermore, your employer should have insurance to protect them against any claims made, as per the Employers’ Liability (Compulsory Insurance) Act 1969. This means that claiming should not cause problems for your employer’s finances, as their insurer should pay your compensation.
You can claim through The Coal Industry Pneumoconiosis Compensation Scheme (CIPCS) if you’re a British worker who has contracted pneumoconiosis. It is designed to financially aid people who have been affected by lung-related diseases caused by their work conditions.
You cannot claim from this scheme and then go on to claim compensation through the courts. Get in touch with our team today for more information about which route to compensation is most suitable for you.
To do this, you first need to be claiming The Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit. You must also have been:
- Working, or had worked, in coal mining for ten years or more.
- Employed for some of that duration as an employee or a contractor in a mine that was licensed by either the National Coal Board (NCB) or the British Coal Corporation (BCC).
For more information on how to claim, either go on the government website or contact our advisors for free legal advice about compensation claims for Pneumoconiosis using the phone number at the top of this page.
If you’re interested in speaking to UK Law and pursuing a personal injury claim, then you will need to ensure that you are within the time limit to do so. After all, a personal injury lawyer will not take your case if you’re claiming outside of the permitted time limit to make a claim.
The personal injury claims time limit is generally:
- Three years from the date of the injury
- Or three years from the date you’ve become aware of the injury
This last point is particularly crucial when making pneumoconiosis claims, as often the disease can develop without you being aware. This is due to the disease’s long latency period, meaning that it could take between ten to thirty years for it to be diagnosed by a medical professional.
There are also some exceptions that apply to those who were under 18 at the time they were exposed to the irritant or lacked the mental capacity to claim. Please get in touch with us as soon as possible to see if you can claim.
You may be wondering, “What does using a No Win No Fee solicitor mean?” It means that:
- Your solicitor will not request legal fees from you, either upfront or during the course of the claim.
- Instead, they will take a small, legally capped portion of your compensation as payment once your claim has been successful.
- You will only need to pay legal fees in this way. Therefore, you don’t need to pay legal fees if your claim is unsuccessful.
All of the solicitors on UK Law’s panel work on this basis. Therefore, they will only take your case if they feel you have a reasonably good chance of success. This means that they won’t waste your time. Click here to see how you could potentially get more money for a personal injury claim.
For more useful information, please use the links below.
To know more about asbestosis, visit the NHS website.
Do you want to know more information about respiratory disease? If so, read this NHS guidance.
The HSE provides statistics regarding accidents at work. Click on this page to learn more.
How long does compensation take to come through? This guide will help.
Click here to review your rights after an accident at work.
For answers to frequently asked questions about Pneumoconiosis claims, read below.
What if I don’t know the full extent of my injury?
An independent medical assessment is provided during the claims process. This means that any injuries you’ve suffered from the incident in question will be confirmed.
Is there an average amount of compensation for pneumoconiosis?
No, there is no average amount of compensation. This is because every compensation amount depends on the severity of the injury, how the injury occurred and to what degree it has negatively affected your life.
Did my employer act negligently?
For a personal injury claim to be successful, it must be proven that your employer acted negligently. Therefore, if your claim is successful, the courts have deemed that your employer has acted negligently.
What do I pay if I win my pneumoconiosis claim?
If you use a No Win No Fee solicitor, they will only take a pre-agreed percentage of your compensation as a success fee if you win. You won’t pay them anything if your claim isn’t successful.
For more about making Pneumoconiosis claims, please call our advisors for free legal advice using the phone number at the top of this page.
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