Renowned UK personal injury firms Slater & Gordon and Leigh Day & Co are working together as the Thalidomiders Legal Group to pursue compensation claims in the UK for people born with disabilities caused by their mother taking the drug [thalidomide].
Lead Client Partners Fraser Whitehead and Martyn Day say ‘We have been working together for 6 months. What we now know is that the evidence of negligence by Grünenthal and the Distillers Company (Biochemicals) Ltd (now Diageo) is overwhelming and the evidence that thalidomiders have been inadequately compensated is undeniable. We see our job as doing our upmost to put that right’.
This initiative arises as a result of research carried out by lawyers in Australia which we are taking forward in the UK. Peter Gordon, a well known lawyer from Melbourne, was asked to investigate claims by a number of Australians who believed they were suffering from birth defects resulting from their mothers taking the thalidomide drug back in the late 1950s/60s. They had never been accepted as being thalidomiders under the assessment regime that applied in that country. Peter’s work brought him to the view that many victims of thalidomide had been wrongly excluded from compensation and claims were capable of being brought for those Australians.
At the end of last year, Peter asked Martyn and Fraser to join forces to investigate whether compensation can be secured for all thalidomiders in the UK.
We know that many thalidomiders are frustrated and concerned about their financial position at this stage of their lives. Whilst being a beneficiary of the Thalidomide Trust has been a significant help, we are aware that many have needs that are not being adequately met. In particular, we are aware that many thalidomiders are angry that Grünenthal, the German company that developed thalidomide, has never compensated UK thalidomiders. We support their view that it is quite wrong that Grünenthal has avoided compensating British victims who face the daily struggle of surviving with their disabilities when it is a thriving drug company worth billions and making nine digit profits.
We also believe that many people whose injuries were caused by thalidomide may have missed out on compensation. In many cases this may be because their injuries were wrongly considered not to be caused by thalidomide. We believe that thalidomide may well have caused a wider range of symptoms than was previously thought.
If you were born between 1958 and 1964 with an injury or condition that may have been caused by thalidomide, and your mother lived in the UK in the early stages of her pregnancy please contact us by phone on 0800 884 0241 or using the form on the left.