Workers’ Compensation Act 1979 and Diffuse Mesothelioma Scheme 2008
The government established the Workers’ Compensation Act 1979 and Diffuse Mesothelioma Scheme 2008 to provide lump sum payments in certain circumstances to people with asbestos related diseases.
There is one claim form covering both schemes a PWC1 – ‘Mesothelioma and other lung diseases’. The form can be obtained from the Jobcentre Plus at Barrow in Furness, which is the central office that deals with the scheme for the whole of the UK. The address is Jobcentre Plus, Barrow IIDB Centre, Pitman Way, Preston PR11 2AB Phone 0800 279 2322
Workers’ Compensation Act 1979
You can claim compensation under the Workers’ Compensation Act 1979 if you fulfil two conditions:
- you have been awarded Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit for an asbestos disease or if you have an asbestos-related prescribed disease for which you have not met the 14% disability requirement, but you have been assessed at least at 1%
- all the relevant employers who caused your disease have ceased to carry on business or, if they are still trading, you do not have a reasonable chance of obtaining damages from them.
There is a time limit of 12 months to apply for payment of Workers’ Compensation from the date the DWP Industrial Injuries section decides that you are suffering from a prescribed disease. A late claim may be accepted, but you will have to explain why the claim was late.
If you have mesothelioma or asbestos related lung cancer, you may want to put your claim in for Workers Compensation at the same time as you apply for IIDB. They will consider your application as soon as your IIDB has been awarded, so contact them as soon as your IIDB is awarded.
Even though you have provided information to the DWP about your previous asbestos exposure for your IIDB claim, you will need list all your previous employers from leaving school and give approximate dates you worked for each employer.
It is important to tell your solicitor about your intention to apply for a payment of Workers’ Compensation. If court action has commenced then payment under the Workers’ Compensation Act cannot be made. However, your solicitor may just be making preliminary enquiries and court action may not yet be started.
If you qualify for a payment from the Workers’ Compensation scheme, you will be paid a one-off lump sum payment in respect of the asbestos-related disease. Your payment will depend on your age and the disablement assessment that was given for your IIDB claim. These are worked out on a sliding scale: the younger you are and the greater your level of disability, the higher your compensation payment.
Diffuse Mesothelioma Scheme 2008
Mesothelioma sufferers who do not qualify for a payment under the 1979 Workers Compensation Scheme should apply for a lump sum payment under the 2008 Diffuse Mesothelioma Scheme. The vast majority of mesothelioma sufferers should receive a lump sum payment under one of the two schemes. You will need to provide a letter from a medical practitioner, for example a lung cancer nurse specialist, or consultant that also shows the date you were diagnosed with the disease.