Asbestos cases
The House of Lords will hear two asbestos compensation cases on 22 April, but will not hear the Fairchild case.

The cases were two of six to have gone to the House of Lords, …

Asbestos cases
The House of Lords will hear two asbestos compensation cases on 22 April, but will not hear the Fairchild case.

The cases were two of six to have gone to the House of Lords, including Fairchild, which was used to refer to the group of cases.

Fox v Spousal (Midland) and Matthews v Associated Portland Cement Manufacturers (1978) were the only ones allowed to go forward.

The Court of Appeal heard both cases late last year.

Fox and Matthews went ahead while Fairchild and the three others did not because Fox and Matthews were based on the sole issue of causation.

Huge storm bill
Britain's insurers face a massive claims bill for vehicle glass after one of the worst storms to hit northern England and Scotland in a decade, Autoglass has said.

The windscreen repair and replacement company said it recorded record levels in vehicle glass damage caused by the severe gales.

It has estimated insurance companies will face a three-fold increase in claims made, in the first week of the storms alone.

Autoglass has flown fitter squads into the worst-hit areas and mobile service vehicles are driving north to help cope with the sudden increase in demand.

Medicash in Ireland
Liverpool-based health cash plan provider Medicash has secured its first Northern Ireland contract. The company will provide a health cash plan for the employees of particle board manufacturer Spanboard Products.

Medicash chief executive Bill Gaywood said: "We have recently started an aggressive new business drive in Northern Ireland and are very pleased with our first success."

The plan will be available to Spanboard employees, on a voluntary basis, through payroll deduction.

Medicash already supplies a health cash plan to Spanboard's Kirby-based sister company Sonae.

For 2000, mutual company Medicash reported a rise in turnover to almost £22m and earned premiums of £19m.

Recovery success
The National Plant and Equipment Register recovered 14 items of equipment in January.

The equipment was worth a total of £67,500.

It also registered 35 stolen pieces of equipment during January, with the most expensive worth £40,000.