Laura Blane is a Partner with Thompsons Scotland and is a solicitor specialising in asbestos related lung disease. Laura is one of only a handful of lawyers in Scotland who has the knowledge and expertise to handle cases of this complex nature.
Laura joined Thompsons in 2002 as a trainee solicitor and has risen through the ranks to become a highly respected partner heading up the firm’s lung disease department. Laura combines this with managing a demanding and extensive case load involving some of the firm’s most complicated and high level cases.
A career highlight for Laura was the pivotal role she played in the landmark Axa case which saw the right to compensation restored to pleural plaques victims. As the lead solicitor, she instigated the cross appeal which also saw the Supreme Court over-rule the Inner House in relation to title and interest, overhauling a century of jurisprudence which radically changed the scope for future Judicial Reviews.
Laura also played a key role in changing Scottish law so that mesothelioma victims could reach a compensation settlement in life while also allowing their loved ones to claim further damages after their death. Below, she talks more about this proud moment of her career.
Laura’s expertise is recognised beyond the legal profession and she regularly advises politicians on issues of policy and technicalities to proposed legislation which impacts on asbestos sufferers. Laura was one of the key advisors to Bill Butler MSP in the progression of his members’ Bill on damages through the Scottish Parliament. Her efforts were publicly recognised at stage three of the Bill which went on to become the Damages (Scotland) Act 2011. The Act will greatly improve the levels of compensation available to victims in fatal cases as well as clarifying the legal process.
Laura is also a Solicitor–Advocate which enables her to prepare and present cases in the Court of Session.