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Groundbreaking Settlement on Behalf of Southern African Gold Miners Suffering from Silicosis & Tuberculosis

Related Lawyers: Richard S. Lewis, Reena A. Gambhir
Related Practice Areas: Human Rights and Environmental Disputes

May 3, 2018 (Washington D.C.) - Hausfeld is proud to announce a groundbreaking settlement on behalf of Southern African gold miners suffering from occupational lung disease that was finalized today in Johannesburg, South Africa.  This historic class action settlement, the first ever of its kind in South Africa, reflects more than a decade of preparation and litigation aimed at providing compensation to the gold miners who suffered from silicosis and tuberculosis over the last 50 years.

In May 2016, the Johannesburg High Court certified the case as a class action against most of South Africa’s gold mining industry by a unanimous three-judge panel.  Extensive negotiations over a three-year period with the defendants resulted in this landmark settlement.  The settlement calls for the compensation of all eligible gold miners who suffered silicosis or tuberculosis, and sets up a trust to provide medical examinations of miners and compensation payments. Benefits for eligible miners will be in the range from 10,000 to 500,000 South African Rand.

“This groundbreaking settlement brings much-needed relief to thousands of workers whose legal rights were ignored and forgotten.  It brings an important measure of justice to a system where it has been absent for decades,” said Hausfeld partner Richard Lewis.

Hausfeld, along with the South African law firm Abrahams Kiewitz Inc., first filed the case in August 2012.  The case was consolidated with another action brought a few months later by South African attorney Richard Spoor, with assistance from Motley Rice, and these firms, along with The Legal Resources Center, worked together to achieve class certification and settlement.  The parties are currently seeking the necessary approval of the settlement by the High Court in Johannesburg.

 

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About Hausfeld

Hausfeld is a leading global law firm with offices in Berlin, Boston, Brussels, Düsseldorf, London, New York, Paris, Philadelphia, San Francisco, and Washington, DC. The firm has a broad range of complex litigation expertise, particularly in antitrust/competition, financial services, sports and entertainment, environmental, mass torts, consumer protection, and human rights matters, often with an international dimension. Hausfeld aims to achieve the best possible results for clients through its practical and commercial approach, avoiding litigation where feasible, yet litigating robustly when necessary. Hausfeld’s extensive experience with alternative and innovative fee models offers clients a diverse menu of engagement options and maximum flexibility in terms of managing their cost exposure.

Hausfeld is the only claimants’ firm to be ranked by the Legal 500 and Chambers & Partners as a top tier firm in private enforcement of antitrust/competition law in both the United States and Europe. For more information about the firm, including recent trial victories and landmark settlements, please visit www.hausfeld.com.