Just and fair compensation scheme for dust disease sufferers

Monday, 29 April, 2024

Just and fair compensation scheme for dust disease sufferers

The WA Government has introduced a bill that will make access to compensation for those suffering from asbestos- or silica dust-related injuries easier. Slater and Gordon lawyers have welcomed the Civil Liability Amendment (Provisional Damages for Dust Diseases) Bill 2024 as an amendment to the Civil Liability Act 2002, as it will allow dust disease sufferers to access just and fair compensation.

Slater and Gordon Head of National Asbestos and Dust Diseases Joanne Wade said the introduction of the bill is an important step in helping those who are suffering from often fatal diseases gain fair access to compensation. Wade added that under existing legislation, people who suffer personal injury because of exposure to asbestos or silica dust are awarded damages on the basis of the ‘once and for all’ rule; this means that if the person develops a new disease from the same cause, such as deadly mesothelioma or lung cancer, they cannot seek further damages at a later date.

“This was an outdated law and only served to make the lives of those already suffering more difficult. Asbestos- and silica dust-related diseases are not a ‘once off’, and neither should be compensation for those suffering from them,” Wade said.

Image credit: iStock.com/thebigland88

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