Are you suffering from an asbestos-related disease? If you came into contact with asbestos through your employment or due to someone else’s negligence, let’s secure the compensation you deserve for the pain and hardship you’re experiencing.
Expert solicitors with experience of asbestos compensation claims
Totally independent, affordable legal advice
Record of successfully pursuing asbestos claims in Northern Ireland
Asbestos is a group of six naturally occurring minerals that form into small fibres. It is an excellent insulator and is fire-resistant, so it was widely used in buildings for most of the 20th century.
But it is now classified as a known carcinogen. When asbestos is disturbed, tiny fibres are released and may be breathed in. They get trapped in the lungs and gradually cause scarring and inflammation, which can lead to serious health conditions such as mesothelioma, asbestosis and pleural plaques.
Asbestos was used in the UK and Northern Ireland from the early 1900s through to the 1980s. It is commonly found in fireproofing, ceiling insulation, pipe insulation, cement, and a range of other construction uses. Its use declined from the 1980s onwards as the health risks became increasingly apparent and was finally banned in the UK and Northern Ireland in 1999.
Asbestos Exposure in Northern Ireland
You’re most likely to have come into contact with asbestos in Northern Ireland and the UK if you’ve worked in the building trade.
If you worked in the construction industry in a role that involved handling roofing, insulation and concrete, you were at particularly high risk of exposure. If you were working between the 1930s and 1980s, you might have worked directly with asbestos. Since it was banned, you may have been exposed to asbestos dust when building materials were disturbed in a home, school or public building.
Trades at high risk of asbestos exposure in Northern Ireland include:
Carpenters and joiners
Painters and decorators
Asbestos Compensation Claims, Northern Ireland
There are several asbestos-related conditions, including asbestosis, mesothelioma and pleural plaques. If you’ve been diagnosed with any of them, you may be eligible to make an asbestos compensation claim in Northern Ireland.
Some of the asbestos compensation claims you can make are:
Mesothelioma is the cancer most commonly caused by asbestos exposure. It is the result of breathing in asbestos dust, which damages the membrane lining the chest wall (also known as the pleura). Over the years, this damage causes changes to the pleura and can eventually result in cancerous cells.
Mesothelioma typically develops around 40 years after asbestos exposure but can develop as little as 10 years after exposure. The main symptoms of mesothelioma are breathlessness, chest pain, a persistent cough, loss of appetite, tiredness and weight loss.
Asbestos Lung Cancer Claims
Asbestos-related lung cancer is caused when asbestos fibres get stuck inside the lungs. This causes irritation that eventually turns into tumours. Lung cancer caused by asbestos will usually result from heavy exposure to asbestos dust. Symptoms of lung cancer include persistent coughing, frequent chest infections, breathlessness, chest pain or coughing up blood.
Asbestosis is a scarring of the lungs, which causes them to shrink and harden. This makes it harder for your lungs to work properly. Asbestosis usually develops between 20 and 30 years after asbestos exposure and requires exposure to a large quantity of asbestos dust. Symptoms of asbestosis include shortness of breath, a persistent cough, wheezing, tiredness and pain in your chest or shoulders.
Pleural Thickening Claims
Pleural thickening is the thickening and scarring of your lungs. It can be caused by exposure to asbestos dust, though illnesses and infection can also lead to pleural thickening. Your consultant will consider your medical background and career before determining the cause. Symptoms include breathlessness, reduced chest wall movement, chest pain and persistent coughing.
Pleural Plaque Claims
Pleural plaques are scarring of the protective membrane around your lungs. It is caused by inhaling asbestos dust that gets stuck in the membrane and, over a long period of time, causes scars. Pleural plaques don’t usually cause any symptoms, but some people have described slight breathlessness or pain when breathing.
Who Can Make An Asbestos Compensation Claim?
Anyone who is suffering from an asbestos-related disease due to somebody else’s negligence is entitled to make a compensation claim.
Claiming for yourself. If you had direct or indirect exposure to asbestos, you can make an asbestos compensation claim.
Claiming on behalf of someone else. If a loved one is unable to make a claim or has died due to an asbestos disease, you can make a claim on their behalf.
Asbestos Compensation Claim Process
We understand that if you’re suffering from an asbestos-related condition, you may be experiencing pain, fatigue and stress. That’s why we’ve made our asbestos compensation claims process as simple as possible — we’ll take care of everything. Here’s what you can expect.
Step 1: Contact Reid Black Get in touch for a no-obligation consultation and free legal advice on your claim from one of our expert asbestos compensation claim solicitors.
Step 2: Rehabilitation Assessment We’ll arrange an assessment with a medical professional to determine any rehabilitation treatments that would ease your condition.
Step 3: Gathering Information The next step is to gather the evidence we need to support your claim. This is likely to include your medical records. We will also help you to compile evidence of when you’re likely to have been exposed to asbestos.
Step 4: Medical Assessment We’ll arrange for an independent medical professional to assess you. We want to know the full extent of your asbestos-related illness — and how it is likely to progress or worsen over time — before agreeing to a suitable level of compensation.
Step 5: Compensation Negotiations Based on all the evidence, we will negotiate with the negligent party or their insurer to secure the maximum amount of compensation to which you’re entitled.
Step 6: Compensation Payout Once a payout amount is agreed, we will make sure it reaches you in a timely manner to alleviate any hardship you’re currently experiencing as a result of your condition.
You normally need to make an asbestos claim within three years of your diagnosis. There may be some leeway if there are mitigating circumstances — especially given the length of time between asbestos exposure and diagnosis.
If you are claiming on behalf of a loved one who died from an asbestos-related disease, you usually need to claim within three years of their death. If you weren’t aware they were suffering from an asbestos-related condition at the time of their death, you need to claim within three years of being informed of this.
In all cases, we would advise you to start a claim as soon as possible.
Asbestos Compensation Amounts
If you’re living with an asbestos-related disease, you are entitled to money to help you with medical care, living arrangements, rehabilitation and other costs.
The amount of asbestos compensation you are entitled to will depend on the seriousness of your condition, the amount of pain you’re in and the impact it is having on your life.Your asbestos compensation payout will be divided into two types of damages:
General Damages – This is compensation for the pain and suffering you’re experiencing because you were exposed to asbestos. The amount you receive will depend on the level of pain and the impact on your life.
Special Damages – This is compensation for financial hardships you’ve experienced because of your asbestos-related disease. This might include loss of earnings, medical and rehabilitation fees, and changes to your living arrangements.
The general damages you receive depends on your illness, how serious it is and how much it impacts your life. The approximate asbestos compensation figures below are only estimates. The final compensation amount will be based on your specific circumstances.
Lung Cancer & Mesothelioma: £100,000-£200,000
Asbestosis: £34,000-60,000 (or £50,000-£100,000 in the case of moderate to severe asbestosis)
Pleural Plaques & Thickening: £3,500-£50,000
Why Choose Reid Black?
We’ve been helping people in Northern Ireland to secure the compensation that is rightfully theirs since 1993. Our experienced solicitors have successfully represented many clients who have made mesothelioma claims and claims for other asbestos-related conditions. We’re ready to help you with your asbestos claim.
Yes, we’re very experienced in handling asbestos claims, so our solicitors will chat about your career history and the type of jobs you did to help identify where you might have been exposed to asbestos.
Yes, we will simply track down the insurance company that insured the company you were working for when you were exposed to asbestos. We will then pursue the insurer for the asbestos compensation you deserve.
That depends on the complexity of your claim and whether the negligent party accepts responsibility. Some asbestos claims can be settled in as little as three months while others will take longer. If your case is unlikely to be settled quickly, we will apply for an interim payment. This will give you immediate access to some of your compensation while we continue working to reach a full settlement.
You may be eligible for Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit. If your condition is preventing you from working you may also be eligible for Disability Living Allowance (DLA) / Personal Independence Payments (PIP). You can still claim asbestos compensation even if you are claiming benefits for your asbestos-related disease.
Let’s Secure Your Asbestos Compensation Payout
If you’re suffering from an asbestos-related disease after being exposed to asbestos through no fault of your own, you don’t deserve the suffering you’re now experiencing. We’ll support you every step of the way to claim the money that is rightfully yours.
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I approached Reid Black Solicitors having known Hamill Clawson for many years as a good dependable lawyer and having been badly let down and grossly overcharged by another solicitor. He referred me to his colleague, David French who was very approachable and went out of his way to help resolve matters equitably in a timely and stress free manner.As a busy professional, this invaluable advice from Hamill and, especially his partner David was greatly appreciated. I am impressed by the high standard of service offered by this Firm and would recommended their services without caveat.read more
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Had the best service from all at Reid black from David and Karen who dealt with my claim, all in all a great service I would highly recommend this Company to anybody wanting a professional service, thankyou to everyone at your office. odyread more
Reid and Black were absolutely outstanding and extremely professional in their handling of my case, They were well organised, timely and informative in their updates as the case progressed. The outcome was even better than anticipated which can only be due to the excellent knowledge, tenacity and determination in seeking a satisfactory outcome. I would highly recommend their services to anyone.read more
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Just want to start off by Thanking Eilis for helping me through everything. I arrived in with very little expectations to get anywhere and I came out with exactly what I wanted, all thanks to the hard work and dedication of Eilis. When I first met Eilis she gave me the warmest reception and was fully understanding and complient with what I wanted. The best solicitors in Belfast hands down! would very highly recommend to anyone!read more
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