Armed forces veterans will now receive the same asbestos compensation as civilians

The Ministry of Defence has made the decision to award armed forces veterans suffering from mesothelioma with a lump-sum of compensation, a benefit from which they had been previously denied.

Laws ruling that the MoD couldn't be sued for any illness or injury caused before 1987 meant that Navy veterans exposed to asbestos on ships could only claim war pension despite civilians often receiving six figure sums in compensation.

Many senior military officers and politicians protested against this unfair treatment, saying it was a breach of the armed forces covenant. In November, Prime Minister David Cameron was challenged during PMQ's in parliament over the issue. In response, he told the House of Commons that the Secretary of State for Defence was looking in to it.

While the new MoD ruling means that veterans who develop mesothelioma due to exposure during service can receive adequate compensation, it only applies to those diagnosed from the 16th of December 2015, leaving many sufferers remaining on war pension alone.

The director general of the Royal British Legion said, "We remain disappointed that around 60 veterans who are currently in receipt of a War Disablement Pension for mesothelioma will be unable to apply for the new lump sum compensation award."

If you or a loved one think you may be entitled to asbestos compensation, our solicitors could help you. Contact us on 0800 508 8747 or fill in a claim form here.

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