Occupational disease

Occupational disease solicitors

Employers have a duty of care to their employees. As an employee, you should be safe in your place of work and protected from any health risks.

However, employers often fail to uphold the necessary health and safety standards – leading to work-related illnesses, also known as occupational or industrial disease.

The ill health caused by an employer’s negligence can be detrimental to an individual’s quality of life, and in some cases fatal. If you have been a victim of occupational disease then you may be entitled compensation.

Our team of specialist lawyers are experts in occupational disease and securing our clients the compensation they deserve. We also work on behalf of the relatives of individuals who have sadly died as a result of work-related illnesses.

What is occupational disease?

There are a variety of ways an employer can fail you as an employee, such as prolonged exposure to hazardous substances, failure to provide personal protective equipment, inadequate breaks or lack of training. Some working environments, such as factories, construction sites, shipyards and labs, will be more hazardous than others – but it is the responsibility of the employer to ensure their employees are protected.

An employer’s failure to do this can cause a number of illnesses and health conditions, including (but not limited to):

  • Asbestos-related diseases – caused by exposure to asbestos and often extremely serious, these include mesothelioma, asbestosis, pleural thickening and, in some cases, lung cancer
  • Noise-related injuries and hearing loss – including tinnitus; exposure to excessive noise in the workplace can have a significant impact on a person’s hearing
  • Vibration syndromes – overuse of vibrating machinery and tools, such as pneumatic drills, chainsaws and grinders, can have a seriously affect a person’s hands and lead to conditions such as hand arm vibration syndrome, vibration white finger and the development of carpal tunnel
  • Cancer – particularly lung, bladder and skin cancer. Lung cancer is can be a result of asbestos exposure, while occupational bladder cancer is typically a result of unsafe exposure to industrial chemicals. Occupational skin cancer is often more difficult to detect, with many cases of delayed or missed diagnoses, and can be caused by exposure to chemicals, by-products, radiation and overexposure to sunlight
  • Dermatitis – one of the most widespread conditions, dermatitis – including eczema – often affects workers who handle irritant chemicals or raw materials and metals, and those who are exposed to fiber glass or extreme weather conditions.

If you have an illness or health condition that you suspect was caused by negligence in the workplace, get in touch with the expert occupational disease solicitors at Verisona Law.

Our specialist team

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Tracy Ivins
Litigation Executive

Tracy has over 20 years’ experience and specialises in clinical negligence and personal injury claims.

Tracy’s clinical negligence experience includes handling complex, high value claims against Hospital Trusts, General Practitioners and other organisations, where claimants have suffered severe physical and psychological trauma as a result of either mismanaged labour resulting in Cerebral Palsy, misdiagnosis/mismanaged care and claims involving fatalities.

Tracy has also dealt with many claims for road traffic accidents, accidents at work, slipping/tripping incidents and industrial disease cases.

Tracy supports claimants to achieve early treatment and rehabilitation resulting in maximum compensation awards providing for the cost of care, treatment and equipment needed to enable them to move forward with their lives.

Examples of how Tracy has helped clients include:

  • She acted for a young lady who suffered Cerebral Palsy as a result of mis-managed labour. The claim settled in excess of £2 million four weeks before trial together with an additional amount by way of periodical payments for the remainder of her life.
  • She acted for the family of a gentleman whom the NHS failed to recall for follow up Gastroscopy following a diagnosis of Barrett’s Oesophagus, sadly with a fatal outcome. The claim settled in excess of £300,000 without having to go to Court.
  • She acted for a man who suffered Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome as a result of working with air tools for many years. The employers strenuously fought the case which settled only days before trial. The client received a significant sum in damages.
  • She acted for a lady who was involved in a road traffic accident who suffered a head injury with associated tinnitus and loss of hearing. Tracy was able to secure appropriate treatment to allow the client to move on whilst at the same time obtaining a respectable settlement for the Claimant.
  • She handled a case for the family of an elderly gentleman who had been sectioned to hospital under the Mental Health Act. Regrettably the hospital failed in their duty of care to adequately risk assess and the Claimant suffered a fall, causing an injury to his head whilst in their care. Unfortunately the Claimant later died from the head related injuries and the matter was ultimately settled in the Claimant’s favour.
  • She acted for a lady who fell on a green near to her property. The Claimant stepped onto a barked area to take a seat but the level of bark had dropped causing the Claimant to fall and break her hip. Liability was strenuously denied by the Defendants. The claim was complicated by the fact that the Claimant passed away before the claim could be settled and the matter then had to be dealt with on behalf of her estate. Proceedings were issued, following which the Defendants made an offer to settle.
  • She acted for a man who sustained an injury at work during the course of his employment, whereby his arm had become caught in the hydraulic arms of a skip lorry. The Claimant’s muscle had been squashed to the bone and he suffered permanent nerve damage to the radial nerve together with associated muscle wastage.

Ongoing matters in early stages of investigation:

  • Mismanagement of Multiple Myeloma resulting in return of cancer in the neck and destruction of vertebrae.
  • Failure on the part of the GP to recognise a patient presenting with a heart attack. The Claimant suffered damage to the vessels and underwent stent treatment. Further surgery is likely to be required.
  • Failure on the part of the GP/NHS to diagnose a tumour and incorrectly treated as a DVT.
  • Failure on the part of the NHS to adequately treat and follow up a patient with pancreatitis as result of which the Claimant suffered from avoidable conditions such as Portal Thrombosis, Portal Hypertension, Splenic Thrombosis, an enlarged spleen, including damage to both the gall bladder and pancreas.

What Tracy’s clients say

“Tracy represented a personal case of mine in 2010, I have nothing but praise for the work that Tracy on behalf of Verisona carried out for me over a 3 year period. Tracey always notified me immediately of problems, changes of circumstances and fresh updates etc without fail. Her personality, quality of work and expertise were outstanding on all fronts. The procedure over the 3 years was a nightmare working toward the outcome but these events and procedures were exactly that, “legal procedure” however Tracy made it all so much more bearable and hassle free. Thank you Tracy and Nigel also.”

“As grieving parents it was so important that we have the support and legal representation that is going to get justice for our Son. We have been overwhelmed by the professionalism and kindness that you have shown us. We are so grateful for everything you have done.”

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Nigel Cole
Principal Lawyer - Litigation

Nigel leads the Civil Litigation and Personal Injury Team.  He has over 30 years’ experience within his field, having originally worked in the West End of London and later returning to his ‘roots’ in Hampshire.  He deals with civil litigation, personal injury and medical negligence claims.

In the course of his career he has dealt with complex cases and secured substantial settlements for severely disabled people.  He recently finalised a settlement of £2.6 million for a claimant who sustained serious spinal injuries from a fall in the work place.