Pleural Plaque Compensation Claim in Newcastle & Sunderland

Pleural Plaque Compensation Claim

Can I make a Pleural Plaque Compensation Claim Claim?

Unfortunately it is not usually possible to pursue a Pleural Plaque Compensation Claim and recover compensation.

The “pleural cavity” is a closed space within the chest walls that houses the lungs. The “pleura” is a thin, transparent membrane that covers the lungs and lines the inside of the chest walls. There are two layers of this membrane. The inner layer of the pleura is attached to the lungs and the outer (parietal) layer is attached to the chest wall.

A small amount of fluid usually fills the gap between the layers of pleura. This fluid is produced by cells in the pleura called “mesothelial cells”. The pleural membranes prevent the lung from making direct contact with the chest wall and the diaphragm.

What Are Pleural Plaques?

Pleural Plaques are the least serious form of asbestos-related disease

Pleural plaques are areas of thickening or scarring which occur on the parietal pleura, most commonly on the lower chest walls and diaphragm. They take the form of small, hard, plate-like raised surfaces of calcified tissue, similar to arteriosclerosis in coronary arteries. These changes are visible on x-ray and can cause impairment of the lung. However in most cases will not produce any symptoms, so you may be unaware that you have them.

Plaques are simply a marker of asbestos exposure and usually do not develop until 20 years or more after first exposure to asbestos. Pleural plaques alone are not prejudicial to health. However, because they are evidence of asbestos exposure, they can indicate that the sufferer is at a small risk of developing a more serious asbestos-related condition such as pleural thickening, asbestosis, mesothelioma or asbestos-related lung cancer.

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Pleural Plaques – State Benefits/Compensation

The Department for Work and Pensions (“DWP”) will not pay any benefits for this condition.

Department for Work & Pensions

Pleural Plaque Compensation Claims

Prior to 2007 compensation could be claimed through the courts. A claim was based on the fact that pleural plaques were seen as a marker of exposure to asbestos. Most doctors will accept that they cannot exclude the possibility that someone who has pleural plaques will develop a more serious asbestos-related condition in the future.

As a result of a House of Lords (now the Supreme Court) decision in 2007 it is no longer possible to pursue a civil law claim for compensation for pleural plaques alone against a former employer / occupier of premises. The Courts do not currently recognise this as a significant injury for which compensation is payable.

Please note that although you cannot usually pursue a Pleural Plaque Compensation claim, if you suffer pleural plaques in addition to a disabling asbestos related disease such as

  • Pleural Thickening,
  • Pleural Effusion,
  • Asbestosis,
  • Asbestos-related Lung Cancer; or
  • Mesothelioma

then you can still Pursue a claim for compensation and you should contact us immediately.