Transitional Period for Guernsey’s Diffuse Mesothelioma Payment Scheme Ends This Month

In edition 309 of BC Disease News (here), we reported that Parliamentarians in Guernsey had voted down a motion to delay commencement of a statutory scheme, devised to compensate mesothelioma victims, thereby setting the wheels in motion for a January 2021 roll out.

From the 1st day of the current year, the Diffuse Mesothelioma Payment Scheme (DMPS), which shares its name with the parallel payment program established in the UK through s.1 of the Mesothelioma Act 2014, has been able to accept applications for one-off awards that benefit adult residents of Guernsey or Alderney, having been exposed to asbestos materials in the same, who have had diffuse mesothelioma diagnoses (but not other asbestos-related diseases) confirmed by specialist consultants. Payments will vary according to the age at which sufferers are diagnosed.

These applications can be prepared by the victims themselves, or by dependants in the event of their passing.[i]

The final day for lodging retrospective claims, i.e. in respect of diffuse mesothelioma diagnosed prior to 1 January 2021 (or related deaths occurring between 1 January 2020 and 31 December 2020), is this Wednesday (31 March 2021).[ii]

Beyond the transitional arrangement, for anyone diagnosed (or deceased) on or after 1 January 2021, claims must be advanced within 12-months of the relevant date (‘of diagnosis’ for living applications and ‘of death’ for post-death applications).

Back in the 309th edition, we revealed that there was a presumption of greater mesothelioma risk in Guernsey than in Jersey, as the island passed regulations to control the use of asbestos at later date.

As at 16 October 2020, Jersey’s DMPS has paid out £123,795 in compensation, having been operational since October 2019 and received fewer than 15 applications.[iii]

Will Guernsey’s scheme attract more applications and lead to more payouts? Only time will tell.

 

[i] ‘Asbestos-related cancer compensation scheme launched in Guernsey’ (4 January 2021 ITV) <https://www.itv.com/news/channel/2021-01-03/asbestos-related-cancer-compensation-scheme-launched-in-guernsey> accessed 25 March 2021.

[ii] ‘Closing date approaches for retrospective mesothelioma claims’ (22 March 2021 GOV.GG) <https://www.gov.gg/article/182778/Closing-date-approaches-for-retrospective-mesothelioma-claims> accessed 26 March 2021.

‘Deadline approaches for Guernsey's asbestos-related cancer compensation scheme’ (22 March 2021 ITV) <https://www.itv.com/news/channel/2021-03-22/deadline-approaches-for-guernseys-asbestos-related-cancer-compensation-scheme> accessed 26 March 2021.

[iii] ‘More than £123,000 paid out in first year of Jersey mesothelioma scheme’ (16 October 2020 ITV) <https://www.itv.com/news/channel/2020-10-16/more-than-123000-paid-out-in-first-year-of-jersey-mesothelioma-scheme> accessed 26 March 2021.