Partial victory in silicosis appeal case

The South Gauteng High Court has, this afternoon (24 June 2016), denied gold mining companies leave to appeal against the certification of a class action by former and current miners to seek damages and compensation for silicosis and tuberculosis contracted while working underground.

However, it has granted mining companies leave to appeal against the development of common law, which would allow for transmission of damages to widows and dependents of deceased miners.

The unusually quick ruling follows yesterday’s (23 June 2016) hearing of the mining companies’ application to appeal the landmark ruling of 13th May, which paved the way for thousands of miners, ex-miners and dependents of deceased miners affected by the mine-contracted lung diseases, to force their employers to pay up.

In its May 13 judgement, the court certified a class action for all categories – current miners, ex miners and widows as well as dependents of deceased miners.