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Case Study

£175k Awarded following Road Traffic Accident

The claimant’s details have been changed but this is indeed a true case

Phil Mulryne acted for Mr E, the Claimant, to pursue a claim for personal injuries following a road traffic accident.

The Claimant was a front seat passenger in a vehicle, which was hit head on by another vehicle.

This resulted in very significant lower limb injuries.

The client suffered a fracture to the left hip and femur which required surgery with metalwork inserted.  However, the Claimant’s recovery was complicated by an infection and subsequently the metalwork was removed.

There was a risk of a recurrent infection in the future, put in the region of 10% – 20% by the Claimant’s medical expert.  If the infection did develop, this would require further surgery.

The Claimant also suffered a rupture to the tendons in the left knee, which was repaired surgically, as well as a fracture to the left tibia which did not require surgery.

In addition, Mr E suffered a fracture to the right femur which required surgery with metalwork inserted.  He also suffered an open fracture/dislocation to the right toe.

He suffered various soft tissue injuries and a psychological injury in particular, with symptoms of daily intrusive memories of the accident, disturbed sleep and anxiety and hyper-vigilance as a passenger.  He was diagnosed with a specific trauma and stress related disorder which was improved with counselling.

As a result of the accident, the Claimant had a lengthy period off work.  At the time of the accident, he was employed as an agency worker but was unable to return to his pre-accident role due to the  manual nature of the work.  The Claimant was initially off work for a period of just over 12 months and then secured agency work for a period of around 7 months, whereupon his employment was terminated for matters unrelated to the accident.

The Claimant then had a further period off work following surgery but secured further employment around 3 years post-accident. The Claimant has been able to continue in that role.

When the claim was submitted to the other driver’s insurers, liability was admitted.

Prior to any medical evidence being served, the Defendants put forward a settlement offer of £120,000.00 to settle the Claimant’s claim.  This offer was not accepted and the offer was reduced to £110,000.00.

At the time the offer was made, the medical evidence had not been completed and there was an uncertainty regarding what further treatment/surgery would be required and to what extent the Claimant was able to work.

Instructions were taken from the Claimant and it was agreed that the claim should not be concluded until the medical evidence had been finalised.

It was agreed that the Defendants should be able to have the Claimant seen by their own medical expert (the Court would order this in due course in any event).  There was a fairly broad agreement between the Claimant’s and the Defendants’ medical experts, other than the extent to which the Claimant was restricted in terms of future working capacity.

Whilst the Claimant’s expert felt that the Claimant should be able to continue with his current employment, a claim was put forward on the basis that he was significantly restricted in terms of what work he could undertake and he would not be able to do any heavy manual work or work that involved him bending down for any lengthy period of time.

As settlement could not be agreed, court proceedings were commenced. However, the parties were able to negotiate a settlement before the matter was allocated a final hearing date.

Discussions continued between the parties with a settlement being agreed in the sum of £175,000.00.

Whilst a global settlement was reached essentially settlement was agreed on the following valuation  :-

Personal injury damages £50,000.00
Past loss of earnings £30,000.00
Travelling expenses £250.00
Care and assistance (this represents the assistance the Claimant required from his partner for personal hygiene and general domestic tasks during the post-accident period of incapacity) £750.00
Future assistance with DIY and gardening tasks £11,500.00
Future costs of surgery (applied on a percentage risk basis) £2,500.00
Claim for handicap on the open labour market/restriction of the Claimant’s future working capacity £80,000.00 (approximately)


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