Compensation and Costs of Future Private Medical Treatment recovered for former Service Engineer with Mesothelioma
Edward Littlejohns contacted the specialist asbestos disease team at RWK Goodman in September 2021 following his diagnosis with mesothelioma, an asbestos-related cancer.
Mr Littlejohns was employed as a service engineer by Jackson Boilers Limited in Leeds between Tax Years 1971/72 and 1979/80. He went out to various sites around the Home Counties to carry out repair and maintenance work on boilers. During his employment, he was exposed to asbestos dust and fibres, which sadly caused him to develop mesothelioma.
Mr Littlejohns frequently used asbestos string when putting boilers back together after carrying out work on them. He used the string to wrap around pipe threads to prevent leaks. He also used it to fit two flanges together without the use of a gasket. The string was flaky and left a residue on his hands after using it. Mr Littlejohns also handled asbestos gaskets, which often got stuck between two sections of pipework and so required considerable force to remove. As a result, asbestos dust and fibres were released into the air around him, which he inhaled.
Mr Littlejohns was never warned about the dangers of asbestos nor provided with any protective equipment and so regularly inhaled asbestos dust and fibres.
In 2021, Mr Littlejohns began to feel unwell. He attended A&E and a chest x-ray revealed fluid on one of his lungs. The fluid was drained and sent for cytology. Mr Littlejohns was subsequently diagnosed with mesothelioma, which understandably came as an incredible shock.
Specialist solicitor, Laura Wilkinson, attended Mr Littlejohns at home and took a detailed witness statement from him regarding his asbestos exposure. The insurers of Jackson Boilers on risk at the time of the asbestos exposure were informed of Mr Littlejohns’ claim.
Medical evidence was obtained from two experts in support of the claim; one to confirm Mr Littlejohns’s diagnosis and prognosis and another to comment on his suitability for future medical treatment of his mesothelioma.
Witness and medical evidence was disclosed to the company’s insurers and negotiations began to settle Mr Littlejohns’s claim without the need to issue Court proceedings. In September 2022, the insurers accepted Mr Littlejohns's settlement offer in excess of £100,000. The insurers also agreed to indemnify Mr Littlejohns for the costs of any future medical treatment that he, together with his treating oncologist, choose to have. Mr Littlejohns now has the freedom to consider further medical treatment beyond the immunotherapy that he is currently having on the NHS.