Man dies of mesothelioma from asbestos exposure in NSW jail

Published 05 Jan 2015

In this matter we acted for the estate of a man who died from mesothelioma caused by his exposure to asbestos dust and fibre whilst working for his two brothers in law in the building and demolition industry in the 1970s and in a NSW jail in the 1980s.

We interviewed our client at the very late stages of his mesothelioma and took his evidence by way of affidavit. We then carried out our forensic investigations with respect to the claims as well as requesting medical records from our client's family doctors and hospitals.

It turned out that our client was not legally residing in Australia and was treated under someone else’s name. After obtaining instructions from our client and collating the medical evidence in the case, we commenced proceedings in Dust Diseases Tribunal of New South Wales. Our client died shortly after we commenced proceedings and due to the technical nature of the case we briefed a barrister.

The Defendant(s) did not admit any liability and argued their cases strenuously. The compulsory mediation was unsuccessful and the matter was set down for hearing.

We conducted long and intense negotiation with the solicitors acting on behalf of the jail and managed to resolve the matter with a good settlement in the circumstances. We then brought the claim before the Tribunal with respect to the exposure caused by the building and demolition work carried out in NSW whilst the deceased was employed by his brothers in law.

At the hearing we tendered all the evidence in support of our case and the Judge found in favor of the Estate awarding damages in the amount of $250,000 compensation plus costs.

Our clients were happy to have received a fair amount of compensation on behalf of the estate of the deceased.