- August 4, 2021
- By Adam Dyl
- 0 comments
Damages recovered for amputee client
I acted recently for a severely injured client in a very contentious road traffic accident case. My client was riding his motorbike when a driver made a right turn across his path. Matters were complicated however when it transpired that my client was overtaking a long queue of traffic at the time and was probably speeding.
The force of the collision threw my client into nearby railings. He suffered cardiac arrest at the scene and a traumatic dissociation or amputation of his left arm at the shoulder. At hospital he was further diagnosed with fractures of his left leg and heel. He was wearing a helmet but nonetheless suffered traumatic head injuries with some cognitive deficits.
By far my client’s most significant injury was the amputation to his left arm. As time went on my client realised the significant limitations he now endures and became depressed. He required significant assistance from his family to look after his young children and could not contemplate a return to work for some considerable time yet. However, obtaining any funding to assist him was virtually impossible because of the circumstances of the accident.
Because of his manoeuvring and speed my client was convicted of dangerous driving. Furthermore, he faced a separate civil claim by the driver following her own less serious injuries. There were witnesses to the collision, but they were reluctant to assist given the circumstances.
It was not clear how fast my client was riding because although a local speed trap triggered, there was no speed camera present inside to provide a reading. I commissioned a full reconstruction of the scene which demonstrated that if the driver had checked and checked again before turning my client would have been seen. In addition, the performance features of the particular motorcycle suggested it probably would have been heard on approach. While my client’s riding would have likely been considered dangerous, the driver had a shared responsibility to check again before turning.
Given the contentious nature of proceedings it was necessary to invite the court to proceed based on a split trial with liability to be determined first. It was agreed between the parties that we would meet to discuss the case informally when the evidence was ready. At the meeting it was agreed that my client faced a finding of substantial contribution on his part but that he would likely not lose the case entirely.
On a 100% basis my client’s claim was highly valuable. The driver’s insurers faced a claim of several million pounds given the significant nature of the injuries sustained. However, there were arguments about the extent to which my client would work long term in any event and his commitment to NHS prosthetic provision had been limited putting such a claim in doubt. Without these two significant heads of loss the recoverable value of the claim may have been considerably less than that put forward.
Despite the difficulties I was able to recover a six-figure settlement for my client. The driver’s counterclaim was met by his insurers with no set off, meaning my client received his damages without further deduction. Undoubtedly my client’s injuries were lifechanging for him, but his damages will go some way to improving his overall quality of life and he was very happy with the outcome.
* Disclaimer: The information on the Anthony Gold website is for general information only and reflects the position at the date of publication. It does not constitute legal advice and should not be treated as such. It is provided without any representations or warranties, express or implied.*
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