Concerns grow over Government proposals for asbestos cases

At the end of last year the government confirmed that a consultation would begin in Spring 2013 in relation to the reform of mesothelioma cases.

Proposals include fixed legal fees, a dedicated pre-action protocol and an electronic portal to process claims.

The government have already agreed to currently exempt asbestos related claims from the Jackson Costs Reforms due to come into effect in April 2013 under the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act so that a detailed report in relation to the same can be published in Autumn 2013.

James Braund, solicitor at Trethowans LLP, states that “whilst any proposals to speed up the litigation process in asbestos claims should be welcomed to ensure that compensation is provided to victims of asbestos exposure as rapidly as possible, it is important that any proposals do not restrict litigation costs so that claims cannot be properly investigated and pursued such that access to justice may be affected”.