Industrial disease specialist “disappointed” by pleural plaques delay

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Industrial disease specialist “disappointed” by pleural plaques delay

22nd July 2009

A further delay in the Government's decision concerning pleural plaques compensation was "deeply disappointing," said industrial disease specialist Bridget Collier.

Bridget, partner in charge of the industrial disease department at Fentons Solicitors LLP, said the decision to delay the Government's decision over whether thousands of pleural plaques sufferers will receive compensation was particularly frustrating as the Government had promised to make a full announcement on the issue prior to the Parliamentary recess.

"We had been expecting that the Government would announce a number of measures concerning pleural plaques today," she said on Tuesday, 21 July. "But the decision was taken to delay the process once again, so that fresh medical evidence from the United States can be considered.

"We had held out hope that a sense of justice would prevail," said Bridget, a senior litigator with the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL) and co-ordinator for APIL's northwest region.

"While it is important that the Government considers all relevant information in this matter, this further delay means that thousands of sufferers across the country still face an uncertain future."

In a statement to the Commons, Justice Secretary Jack Straw announced Government funding of a National Centre for Asbestos Related Disease (NCARD), a register for pleural plaques suffers, faster payments for mesothelioma sufferers and the possible establishment of an Employers Liability Insurance Bureau (ELIB).

Bridget, who for many years has seen first-hand the effect being diagnosed with pleural plaques has on sufferers, welcomed the establishment of an ELIB. It would operate in a similar way to the existing Motor Insurance Bureau.

All insurers would pay money into the scheme, ensuring that if someone developed mesothelioma but the relevant insurers could not be traced, the victim would still receive compensation.

Source - UCATT

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