Q: I have worked in the agricultural industry for many years. My employer supplies ear protectors but has never supplied masks or provided training about the dangers of inhaling dust. Last year when we had all that hot, dry weather, I was working in poorly ventilated areas with a high amount of poultry dust, and I developed a cough and breathing problems.
Now I have been diagnosed with ‘occupational asthma’ and ‘farmer’s lung’, and I have been advised that I should change jobs. As I have done the same job since leaving school this isn’t going to be easy and I would need to retrain. The problem is that I cannot afford the training or being unemployed. Could I get any compensation from my employer?
A: Injuries and work-related illnesses in the Agricultural industry are surprisingly common and from what you have said, yours does sound like a work-related illness. If it is proven to be the case, then it could mean you are entitled to compensation.
Making a claim could ease the financial pressures of you being out of work and also getting retrained for a different type of job. It may also be the case that a good personal injury lawyer could successfully apply for interim payments prior to a claim being concluded. Faced with a strong claim, employers will often admit liability and agree a final settlement without going to court.
You should seek legal advice from a local injury compensation lawyer who can assess the viability of you making a claim as soon as possible. Before making an appointment, however, you should gather evidence such as the medical records relating to your illnesses, and any other relevant information.
This question has been answered by Claire Parfitt, a Solicitor with GHP Legal. If you would like to speak to someone about this or any other legal matter, please visit our website www.ghplegal.com and use the contact us form, or call us on: Wrexham 01978 291456, Llangollen 01978 860313, Oswestry 01691 659194