Asbestos (See also: Procedure, Negligence): Budds v Marples Ridgeway Developments Ltd (13 October 1998) High Court, Queen’s Bench Division

United Kingdom

Mr Budds was diagnosed with pleural thickening of one lung in 1994. This was the direct result of exposure to asbestos during the course of his employment nearly thirty years ago.

Deterioration of his physical condition had left him suffering from shortness of breath and a continuous pain in his right shoulder meaning he had been unable to carry out even light work.

Since he became aware of his condition, his mental state had also worsened with the development of a mixed anxiety and depressive disorder.

In addition, there existed a 50% risk that his condition would deteriorate further and his life expectancy had been reduced by two years. This claim was therefore for an appropriate award of general damages for pain, suffering and loss of amenity.

It was held that such an appropriate award was £40,000. In addition, awards were made in respect of past and future loss of earnings and medical expenses. The total award was approximately £197,000 with interest to be assessed. (New Law Digest, 13 October 1998)