Last updated on May 12th, 2022
If you’ve suffered from lung cancer due to negligence, such as being wrongly exposed to carcinogens in the workplace, or from a misdiagnosis because of medical negligence, you may be eligible to claim compensation.
If you would like to make a claim against an employer, an NHS trust, or a medical professional if negligence was to blame, our team is here to help. We provide a free telephone consultation where your case will be reviewed by a specialist and you’ll be given advice on your options. If your lung cancer claim has a reasonable chance of success, we could appoint one of our solicitors to it who all work on a No Win No Fee basis meaning you don’t pay for their work if you are not compensated.
To find out more about claiming for the suffering caused by lung cancer, please continue reading. Otherwise, to start your claim right away, please call our claims line today on 0800 6524 881.
- Am I Eligible To Claim Compensation For Lung Cancer?
- Lung Cancer Caused By Medical Negligence
- Lung Cancer Caused By Working Practices
- How Much Compensation For Lung Cancer Could I Claim?
- Time Limits For Cancer Claims
- What Solicitors Can Provide In Lung Cancer Claims
Our solicitors need to check how likely a lung cancer claim will be successful before offering their No Win No Fee service. During the assessment, they’ll try to find out whether:
- You were owed a duty of care by the defendant; and
- They were negligent and breached that duty; and
- As a result, you suffered because of lung cancer.
The grounds for claiming for compensation lung cancer are not quite as straightforward as that, though. Specialist medical evidence will be required to prove exactly how negligence has led to your suffering. This is the key reason we would suggest having legal representation. Let’s now look at how they could help with different types of claims.
A medical negligence solicitor will need to review what went wrong with your treatment to warrant making a lung cancer compensation claim. This is not something a solicitor can do alone as they are not medically trained. Instead, the process relies on medical specialists who will apply the Bolam test.
All medical professionals including nurses, anaesthetists, and doctors have a legal duty of care which means they must provide a reasonable standard of care when treating patients. The Bolam test is used to establish whether a medical professional’s actions (or inaction) have caused the patient to suffer.
The test is peer-led and looks at whether professionals in a similar medical field would’ve acted in the same way as the defendant. If they find the defendant acted negligently, then a lung cancer compensation claim might be possible.
Your doctor will first perform various physical examinations to determine the presence of any lung cancer indicators. Swelling in the lymph nodes above your collarbone, an abnormal sound in your lungs, the presence of an abnormal mass in the abdominal area, or laboured breathing may cause the doctor to suspect lung cancer.
Your doctor will order an x-ray if they suspect lung cancer because, by the time a malignant tumour starts to cause symptoms, it is usually visible on an x-ray. If the doctor wants a more detailed look at your lungs they may order a CT scan.
The only certain way to diagnose whether a mass that is in the lung is malignant is to perform a biopsy. This is done by removing some of the cells and examining them under a microscope. Your doctor will put you to sleep for the procedure. Then they insert a thin tube through your mouth or nasal cavity to the site in your lung where the mass is located. A tiny portion of the mass is then removed for further examination.
Your doctor may opt to use a CT scan to help them guide a needle through your skin and into the abnormal mass. Then they can remove some of the cells by drawing them into the needle.
Lymph nodes in close proximity to the abnormal mass will also be tested to see if the cancer is contained in the mass, or if it has spread into other areas of your body.
The exact treatment for lung cancer depends on multiple factors including the type, stage and size of the tumour. How far the tumour has spread and the patient’s overall health are also taken into consideration.
Most common treatment options include chemotherapy, radiation, surgery or a combination of any of these treatments.
Early diagnosis and treatment are crucial for the successful treatment of lung cancer. If treatment is delayed because the cancerous cells were not detected on time, the cancer can spread, drastically reducing the chances of a complete cure.
One of the most common mistakes that a medical professional can make is misdiagnosing the symptoms of lung cancer. Because the symptoms are similar to many other non-threatening respiratory conditions, a misdiagnosis is unfortunately not rare. There are several consequences of misdiagnosing lung cancer as some other condition. The patient is not referred to a specialist in time resulting in a delay in performing a biopsy and a further delay in starting any treatment till it is too late.
Other reasons for delayed or wrongful treatment could be because of misinterpreting the investigation, wrongly classifying the type of cancerous cells, errors during staging or failure to establish whether or not the patient has a family history of lung cancer.
Sometimes, things could go wrong during the treatment process itself.
The most commonly reported symptoms of lung cancer include:
- Coughing that will not go away;
- Shortness of breath;
- Bloody mucus discharge when coughing;
- Frequently recurring respiratory infections, such as pneumonia or bronchitis;
- A dull aching pain in the chest;
- Change in voice.
Sometimes, the above symptoms may also be accompanied by extreme and sudden weight loss, severe jaundice or pain in the bones.
Some of the factors that could put you at high risk for lung cancer are:
- Family history of the disease;
- Being a smoker;
- Living with a smoker;
- Exposure to radon, asbestos, silica, chromium or arsenic;
- Long time exposure to diesel exhaust fumes.
More often than not, the symptoms of lung cancer are only evident when the cancer has progressed to an advanced stage. If you are experiencing any of the symptoms and you go for a check-up, you must inform your doctor if you are at high risk so they can recommend the best preventive and diagnostic measures.
According to the Health and Safety Executive (PDF document), around 5% of all cancer deaths in 2005 were caused by exposure to carcinogens in the workplace. Their report looks at deaths caused by:
- Mineral oils.
- Diesel engine exhaust fumes.
- Other agents.
Essentially, employers have a duty of care to protect the welfare of their workers. If that duty of care is breached, employees could make a lung cancer claim if the illness was caused directly by negligence. Examples of negligence include not providing protective breathing apparatus, failing to ventilate the workplace, or using banned substances.
We may be able to help you claim even if your employment ended years ago. That’s because lung cancer can take years to develop and sometimes decades. You could be eligible to claim against a previous employer so long as your cancer was diagnosed within the last 3-years.
If you contact our team and your case is taken on, your solicitor will look at your employment history to establish to who the claim should be directed.
In this section, we’ve listed some of the more common occupational respiratory diseases that can cause lung cancer due to negligence in the workplace. They include:
- Mesothelioma caused by breathing in tiny particles of asbestos fibres.
- Byssinosis, results from breathing in flax, dust, and hemp in cotton processing. Byssinosis is also referred to as Brown Lung Disease.
- Silicosis, results from inhaling airborne silica found in foundries, mines and blasting operations.
- Coal Worker’s Pneumoconiosis. The results from the inhalation of coal dust.
We could help you claim for any form of lung cancer that’s been caused by your employer’s negligence. For a free consultation and legal advice on your options, please get in touch today.
When making a lung cancer compensation claim, every aspect of your claim will need to be justified and backed by evidence. How much compensation you claim will ultimately be determined in two parts:
- General damages. This head of loss looks at the pain, suffering and loss of amenity you’ve sustained because of your condition. It can include both physical and psychological injuries.
- Special damages. The part of your claim that covers any financial impact caused by your illness. You could therefore claim for lost earnings, healthcare costs and expenses, travel costs or the cost of alterations to your home to help you cope.
To help prove how seriously you’ve suffered, and the outlook for the future, you may be required to have a medical assessment during your claim. This will be performed independently and can usually be booked locally to help avoid excessive travel.
If you’re wondering what amount of settlement you’ll receive if your case is won, we’ve included some compensation amounts for lung cancer claims below. These figures are advised by the Judicial College and are used to help courts, insurers, solicitors and lawyers determine compensation award levels.
Due to the fact that every claim will differ, and the figures only relate to general damages, you should only use these lung cancer compensation amounts as guidance. If your claim is accepted by a solicitor from our team, they’ll let you know your claim amount once they have reviewed your case in more detail.
- £100,670 to £135,920 compensation for young people with lung cancer causing serious disability and a probability of premature death.
- £63,650 – £114,460 compensation for mesothelioma where there’s severe pain and impairment to quality of life.
- £70,030 – £97,330 compensation for lung cancer (typically in older people) where there is severe pain and impairment to quality of life.
We aren’t able to guarantee the figures listed because any settlement will be based on the severity of your injuries plus any financial impact too. Therefore, please bear in mind that the amount you could receive may be more or less than the figures listed.
Whether you’re claiming for occupational lung cancer or medical negligence, a 3-year time limit applies. This will commence from your date of knowledge rather than when you were exposed to carcinogens in the workplace, or when a medical professional was negligent. The date of knowledge is the date on which your cancer was diagnosed by a doctor.
Our advice is that it is best to begin your lung cancer claim as soon as you’re diagnosed. That’s because your solicitor will need to perform several tasks before submitting the claim. That might include collecting evidence, arranging medical reports, and investigating your work history. The sooner you begin, the more time they’ll have to collect as much evidence as possible.
If you would like to claim compensation on behalf of somebody who has died from lung cancer, we could help you do so. To be eligible to do so, the deceased would, unfortunately, need to have passed away within 3-years of their diagnosis. If you do decide to claim, you would have 3-years to claim from the date your loved one passed away.
Please call our team if you would like to check how long you have to begin a lung cancer claim.
We believe that taking on legal representation gives you the best chance of being paid compensation at the right level. That’s especially true when you think that most claims are handled by insurance companies. Their job is to limit how much they pay out in compensation. Therefore, if you can’t prove to them exactly why their client was ultimately responsible for your lung cancer, you could miss out on the compensation you might be due. That’s where one of our specialist solicitors could help you.
Using their experience, they’ll supply a clear and concise claim that is fully backed up by evidence. So that you’re not involved in complex medical or legal arguments, your solicitor will handle all communication with the insurance company for you. However, they will ensure you remain up to date with what is happening. Importantly, they will do all they can to try and make sure you are compensated fully.
To begin a lung cancer compensation claim today, please feel free to call us on 0800 6524 881. Your claim will be reviewed for free and we could appoint a No Win No Fee solicitor to help you.