Occupational disease: smokers have a harder time recognizing it
A locksmith widow from Marburg has suffered a defeat before the Hessian State Social Court. The woman wanted her late husband's lung cancer to be recognized as an occupational disease in order to receive a survivor benefit claim from the employer's liability insurance association. The reason given by the widow was that her husband's lung cancer had arisen as a locksmith and welder in the course of his job, to which he had been exposed to chromium, nickel and ionizing radiation.
However, the Darmstadt court dismissed the complaint on August 23. As justification, the court stated that the illness was not sufficiently related to professional activity. The man, who died at the age of 60, had smoked around 20 cigarettes a day for 30 years, which contributed to a ten times higher risk of lung cancer. This was crucial for the court in making its judgment, even though the man was exposed to cancer-causing pollutants at work.
Damage must clearly have been caused by the work In order for claims from accident insurance to be asserted, proof must generally be provided that the damage is clearly attributable to the activity performed, a court spokeswoman told t-online.de. The widow cannot appeal the verdict, the judges said. (fr)