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Clydeside Action on Asbestos, pleural plaques victims and Frank Maguire, our Senior Partner at Thompsons Solicitors all welcomed the news that the bid by insurers to block the Scottish Parliament’s new law confirming the right to compensation of victims of pleural plaques has been blocked.

Frank said: “This judgement states categorically that the Scottish Parliament was perfectly within its rights to pass this law and that is tremendous news for pleural plaques sufferers. We have an Act of the Scottish Parliament that establishes pleural plaques victims right to compensation and overturns the infamous House of Lords judgement to the contrary. Those responsible should now abide by the law. Thompsons have almost 1,000 pleural plaques cases which have been in limbo while the insurance industry pursued this ill-fated legal action and I now call on them to stop obstructing justice and not to try and put any more barriers in the way of victims seeking compensation.

It was also noted that many insurance companies not involved in the court action, as well as the Ministry of Defence and British Shipbuilders, have been holding back on settling pleural plaques cases. They also should now meet their obligations and pay up.

Frank went on to say “The Westminster Government should now enact similar legislation for the rest of the UK. It is ironic that pleural plaques sufferers in Gordon Brown’s constituency which includes Rosyth will now be able to claim compensation, but other MOD workers outside Scotland will not.”

Suffers often have some form of breathlessness, but the biggest strain is the worry of developing a fatal condition like mesothelioma which happens with frightening regularity. Claimants mainly come from shipyard workers who had to cut asbestos boards – many stating that their employers kept them doing it long after they knew of the dangers telling them to use small blades rather than a buzz saws and to keep dust to a minimum. Out of 150 joiners who worked at the Caledonian joiners only 35 are still alive. The others all dying well before they were 65, most of them from mesothelioma or lung cancer.”

This is a great day for the victims and their families.
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