The estimated future cost of UK asbestos compensation claims, having first been estimated to have almost doubled between 2004 and 2008, were forecast to reach £11bn for the period 2010-2050.
The continuing publication of rising figures in recent times by the Actuarial profession’s working party, demonstrates quite clearly that serious, life-threatening dangers are still posed by the persistent prevalence of asbestosis and mesothelioma amongst a significant number of both retired and working people.
In fact, of this figure, 90% relates to mesothelioma and more than £9bn relates to the period 2009 to 2040, compared to the working party’s 2004 estimate for the same period of £4.7bn.
The proportion of mesothelioma sufferers that have made a claim for compensation has increased from one-third in 2004 to nearly two-thirds more recently. It is thought that increased asbestos awareness and publicity, due to legislation seen in recent years is causing an impact.
Access to the internet means an unprecedented ability now for any individual to more easily research asbestosis symptoms and obtain genuine asbestos advice. The necessity of taking prompt action has led to diagnosis being made slightly earlier, giving rise to a greater opportunity to lodge a successful claim with a dedicated asbestosis lawyer.
Claims are predicted to gather pace in 2015 and carry on until 2035 and beyond with the number of future claims ranging from 80,000 to 200,000 or more.
Deaths from mesothelioma, a cancer of the lung lining caused by exposure to asbestos, which takes 30 to 50 years to develop, could account for more than half of claims.
The research also revealed a marked increase in the number of claims from people who are not presently suffering from any asbestos- related illness but have been exposed to the cancer-causing fibre and are in a very real danger of succumbing to secondary asbestos disease.