If siderosis has set you back, we'll help you move forward

Siderosis is a lung condition from inhaling iron particles that typically affects welders. It can leading to coughing and breathing difficulties.

If your life, or the life of a loved one, has been affected by siderosis, we can help. If your injuries were caused by someone else's actions or negligence, you may be entitled to claim compensation.

You can make a No Win, No Fee compensation claim with the help and support of a personal injury solicitor.

You are not alone

Siderosis is one of a group of lung diseases known as pneumoconiosis. It is caused by iron overload in the lungs as a consequence of inhaling iron dust, usually over a long period of exposure. According to the British Medical Journal, around 7% of arc welders are diagnosed with the disease.

An estimated 19,000 new work-related cases of lung problems, and 12,000 lung disease deaths are reported to the HSE every year (hse.gov.uk).

Siderosis claims fall within the category of industrial disease compensation claims. If you have been diagnosed with siderosis, you may be entitled to make a claim for compensation against your employer or a former employer.

If you decide to make a siderosis claim, your personal injury solicitor will take you through every step of the claims process. Your solicitor will be with you until you win your claim and get the compensation you need to move forward.

For information on lung disease symptoms and treatment, visit: lung health checks (nhs.uk).

Am I entitled to make a siderosis claim?

If you've been injured or diagnosed with an illness in the last three years and it wasn't your fault, you will be able to claim compensation.

Use our injury claim calculator to find out if you can claim. Or you can call 0800 376 1001 to speak to a specialist advisor. Find out in minutes if you have a claim.

How much compensation can I claim for siderosis?

The amount of money you could claim for your injury will depend on:

  • the seriousness of your injury, and
  • any financial losses or costs you have incurred.

At the start of your claim, your solicitor will consider the many ways your injuries have affected your life. Your solicitor will take these considerations into account to calculate the correct compensation award.

Siderosis compensation calculator

Get an accurate compensation estimate (including for multiple injuries), confirm your legal position, and check if you have a No Win, No Fee claim.

Updated July 2024 Compensation Calculator v3.04

General damages

General damages are awarded for pain, suffering and loss of amenity (PSLA).

Awards for general damages are set by the Judicial College (judiciary.uk) and published in their guidelines for personal injury awards.

How is compensation calculated if I have multiple injuries?

Special damages

Special damages are for financial losses and expenses you have incurred because of your accident. In addition to paying for loss of earnings, special damages can cover any care costs and medical procedures you need, such as removal from exposure, chelation therapy, monitoring and dietary changes.

Read more:

A complete list of recoverable losses in a personal injury claim

Average siderosis general damages compensation

The following siderosis payouts refer to the Guidelines for the Assessment of General Damages in Personal Injury Cases, Sixteenth Edition by the Judicial College (oup.com).

These tables are used by solicitors or by the courts as a starting point when calculating your compensation.

Please note: these average figures represent general damages only, and do not include any element of special damages (e.g. lost wages).

Example Amount
Lung disease
Short-term aggravation of bronchitis or other chest infection Up to £4,840
Non-permanent lung conditions Up to £4,840
Slight breathlessness recovery in a few years £9,670 to £18,910
Bronchitis and wheezing £18,910 to £28,460
Emphysema £49,850 to £63,660
Breathing difficulties needing use of an inhaler £28,460 to £49,850
Life-threatening disease affecting a young person £91,520 to £123,560
Neck injury
Fractures or dislocations or severe soft tissue damage £41,350 to £50,900

What is siderosis?

Siderosis is caused by the inhalation of iron particles. The disease typically presents in metalworkers who might breathe in the iron dust that is emitted in welding fumes when there is insufficient ventilation in the area. For this reason, siderosis is commonly known as welder's lung.

For many patients, siderosis is a benign disease. This means that the patient may experience only minor symptoms and lung function is not usually affected. Other patients may display a variety of chronic symptoms including:

  • Coughing
  • Chest pains
  • Asthma symptoms
  • Breathing difficulties.

In severe cases, welders may develop pneumonia, a serious lung infection or total iron overload. Diagnosis is by way of chest X-ray, scans and breathing tests. Treatment will depend on what, if any, symptoms emerge.

Getting an independent medical assessment of the potential symptoms of siderosis is a key step in the claims process. This ensures that the compensation settlement reflects the long-term prognosis for the condition and the effect it will have on the claimant's life.

The conditions of employment, the severity of the illness and the effect the siderosis will have on the claimant's quality of life will all be factored into the compensation award. The claimant's age is also relevant. Younger claimants typically receive more compensation than older claimants to reflect the fact that they must live with the condition for a longer period of time.

See also:

Lung disease compensation claims

Employers have a 'duty of care'

Employers have a legal 'duty of care' to minimise a worker's exposure to fumes and dust in the workplace. If a potentially hazardous work task cannot be eliminated, employers should take reasonable steps to reduce the risk of a worker developing siderosis, for example by:

  • Ensuring that the work area has sufficient extraction equipment
  • Supplying personal protective equipment such as a mask and respiratory aids.

Where an employer has not done everything they reasonably could to provide a safe working environment, and the employee has developed welder's lung as a result, a claim for compensation may be brought. Failing to provide suitable protective equipment is likely to be such a breach.

Siderosis claims must be brought within three years of:

  • The date of exposure to iron dust; or
  • The date the claimant first became aware of the illness following a diagnosis.

Read more:

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) injury claims

What if my employer has gone out of business?

Siderosis can take ten years or more to develop. By the time a diagnosis is made, the claimant's former employer may have gone out of business.

In this scenario, a claim may still be made. The injury lawyer can help with tracing the parties responsible for the illness and their insurers using the Employers' Liability Tracing Office and records held at Companies House. The insurance company will be responsible for paying the compensation.

Employers' liability claims claims

Work-related illness claims are also known as employers' liability claims. Click on the icons below for more information:

No win, no fee siderosis compensation claims

With no win, no fee, you can claim siderosis compensation without financial risk. If your claim isn't successful, you pay nothing. If you win, you only pay a pre-agreed percentage of your compensation.

Find out more about how no win, no fee claims work

Get expert advice now

Interested in talking to an injury specialist about your claim?

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Call 0800 376 1001

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Source: (reviewed: 09/12/2023)

Howard Willis, Personal injury solicitor

Howard Willis, Personal injury solicitor