Figures have been released on the Mesothelioma Payment Scheme since its inception in May 2014. The figures from the Department of Work & Pensions show that 41 applications have been successful out of 98 which have been submitted. Ten have been unsuccessful and 47 are pending medical evidence.

 

The main reasons for applications being turned down are that the applicant has failed to prove negligent exposure and/or failed to make adequate investigations to find an insurer. This only adds weight to the long held view by this firm that specialist legal advice is needed to ensure the applications are perfected so they proceed smoothly. The suggestion by the insurance industry that families and victims can ‘have a go’ at the application themselves isn’t supported by the figures.

 

Where cases have been rejected and then reviewed, 50% of these original rejections were overturned on appeal. The figures suggest this is largely due to further supporting evidence being submitted by the applicant.

 

Some firms are submitting applications early without full evidence and information which merely slows the application down. Only 40% of applications have all the necessary evidence available to the assessor when they come to make a decision.

 

Our own experience of the scheme has proven successful with our only scheme application being accepted and our client receiving her money within a short period of time. However we prepared the case thoroughly prior to application and following the processes we would with any mesothelioma claim outside of the Scheme. The large volume of work that went into attempting to locate insurers for the defunct company and preparing witness statements to support the application is not something I anticipate somebody without legal training could do.

 

If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with mesothelioma we would strongly urge you to contact us. Whilst the scheme is there as a last resort it is by no means an easy option and pays out only a proportion of overall damages compared to a usual civil claim against former employers.