Norman Ringham v. Eastern Gas Board
Mr Ringham was employed by the Eastern Gas Board as a fitter from 1955-1963. From 1963-1973 he worked on a self employed basis. However, during this period for about 90% of the time he worked exclusively on a contractual basis for the Eastern Gas Board.
Throughout 1955-1973 Mr Ringham was exposed to asbestos whilst undertaking his work as a gas fitter.
The Eastern Gas Board accepted that Mr Ringham was employed by them from 1955 to 1963, but denied that they engaged Mr Ringham as a gas fitting contractor and required Mr Ringham to prove it.
The Gas Board confirmed that even if Mr Ringham could prove that they contracted him, he remained responsible for his own safety and should have provided his own respiratory equipment and taken his own precautions against inhalation of asbestos fibres. We issued Court proceedings and obtained Judgment against the Eastern Gas Board, but the Eastern Gas Board alleged that Mr Ringham was contributory negligent and for this reason they refused to pay Mr Ringham 100% of his compensation. The Eastern Gas Board argued that there should be a reduction for the years that Mr Ringham was self-employed.
During the course of proceedings Mr Ringham was offered compensation by the Eastern Gas Board on a reduced basis. However, we advised Mr Ringham to reject it. We are happy to report that the Eastern Gas Board, due to our persistence, eventually offered Mr Ringham compensation on a 100% basis.
Accordingly Mr Ringham received his compensation within his lifetime.
Mr Ringham was an active and popular member of the Federation of Small Businesses. After receiving the compensation he commented:
“When we first considered claiming for compensation my family were very concerned about the possible stress this may cause me.
However, I found the process relatively stress-free and everything seemed to happen quite quickly.
You visited me at home only once to take a statement and everything else was completed by telephone calls and letters. The case was brought to a mutual agreement out of Court which I was very pleased about.
I found that everything was handled with efficiency and speed. I would be very happy to recommend Fieldfisher to anyone needing to claim compensation.”
For further information or if you believe you have a mesothelioma compensation claim, please contact a member of our mesothelioma claims team on freephone 0800 358 3848, email firstname.lastname@example.org or complete our short enquiry form.
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