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Compensation for asthma and related conditions in the workplace

No win no fee “occupational asthma” compensation solicitors

Occupational Asthma is asthma caused by breathing in substances at work.  If you are asthmatic as a result of your working environment we may be able to help with a claim for industrial disease compensation.

When seeking medical advice, doctors usually refer to the substance causing the symptoms as a “respiratory sensitiser”, and it is the sensitiser that causes the asthma.

No win no fee “occupational asthma” compensation solicitors

Occupational Asthma is asthma caused by breathing in substances at work.  If you are asthmatic as a result of your working environment we may be able to help with a claim for industrial disease compensation.

When seeking medical advice, doctors usually refer to the substance causing the symptoms as a ‘respiratory sensitiser’, and it is the sensitiser that causes the asthma.

Read about successful compensation claims for asthma related illness. Legal advice is available today all you have to do is call HELPLINE TBA.

Occupational asthma usually develops in one of the following ways:

  • Allergic reaction –  A person breaths in a sensitiser at work and develops hypersensitivity.  This may take a few weeks or it may take a few years to occur.
  • Reactive Airways Dysfunction Syndrome (RADS) – This occurs when a person breaths in very high concentrations of a substance in the workplace and as a result develops asthma.
  • Irritants – Breathing in irritant substances in the workplace over a prolonged period can result in asthma.
  • Predisposition – A person who has not previously suffered asthma may develop asthma after breathing in sensitisers or irritants in the workplace.

Advice for asthmatics

A diagnosis of occupational asthma usually depends upon evidence of exposure to a sensitiser or irritant substance in the workplace, and the person suffering asthma symptoms which are clearly work – related.

Lung function tests such as peak flow rate charts can show the relationship between work and other possible causes of asthma.

Any person of any age or sex may develop asthma as a result of substances at work.

Example work types where people may develop occupational asthma:

  • Hairdressing salons
  • Cleaning firms
  • Metal manufacturers
  • Bakery
  • Brewing
  • Plastics and rubber
  • Agriculture and horticulture
  • Textile manufacture and processing
  • electrical assembly
  • Motor vehicle bodywork
  • engineering
  • Wood working
  • Factory assembly

Typical substances causing asthma:

  • Dusts: flour dusts, metal dusts, wood dusts, rubber/latex dusts, etc Fumes: solvents, detergents, welding, solder, etc.
  • Animal proteins: eggs, fish, seafood, etc.
  • Dyes: henna (hair dye), carmine (food and drink colouring), hair bleaches, etc.
  • Vapours: disinfectants, pesticides, floor coatings, varnish, etc.

The Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002 (COSHH) requires employers to control exposure to hazardous substances to prevent occupational illness and disease such as occupational asthma.

COSHH initially came into force in 1989 and has since been updated.  In COSHH a substance hazardous to health is given a wide definition because it is, for example, recognised that even naturally occurring substances such as animal proteins and wood dusts can cause asthma. Anyone injured at work because of a health and safety breach may be entitled to claim compensation.

COSHH places employers under an absolute obligation to ensure that exposure to a hazardous substance in a workplace is either prevented altogether or adequately controlled.  If these duties are not met by an employer and as a result a worker develops occupational asthma then the worker will be entitled to claim compensation from his employer.   Important health and safety duties are placed on employers by COSHH, such as to supply suitable personal protective equipment, good housekeeping and keeping records.  The duties may also include providing information and training to employees, and in many circumstances health checks and keeping health records for employees.

Persons who have developed asthma, chronic bronchitis or pneumoconiosis (including silicosis and asbestos) as a result of work may make an application to the Department for Work and Pensions to receive the benefit known as Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit.

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