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Written by Claire Roantree

Boyes Turner’s personal injury lawyers have secured a £1million settlement for the widow of a man in his early 40s who was killed when he was hit by the defendant’s HGV. The deceased had pulled over onto the hard shoulder to exchange details with another driver following a minor collision, when the HGV veered onto the hard shoulder fatally injuring the two men and colliding with their vehicles. The defendant HGV driver was convicted of causing death by dangerous driving whilst over the legal limit for drugs including heroin and crack cocaine.

HGV driver convicted of causing death by dangerous driving and given custodial (prison) sentence

Liability for the accident was denied by the HGV driver, who pleaded guilty to causing death by careless driving, but not guilty to causing death by dangerous driving. At the criminal trial, he was convicted of causing death by dangerous driving and given a custodial (prison) sentence.

Witness evidence at the criminal trial told the court that the defendant had taken heroin and crack cocaine into the early hours of the morning of the accident, before getting into his cab early the next morning to drive to his next drop off. The Judge noted that in the moments immediately before the crash, he drove for 300 metres at 60 mph with no braking and his foot on the accelerator “at full throttle”.

Fatal accident claim for compensation for bereaved widow and child

We pursued a compensation claim for our client and her child.

Compensation for fatal accidents is calculated according to the rules set out in two statutes:

  • The Law Reform (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1943 – for losses to the deceased’s estate; and 
  • The Fatal Accidents Act 1976 – for loss suffered by the deceased’s dependants.

In this case, in addition to the statutory bereavement award, funeral expenses and other expenses, our client and child were entitled to compensation for their “loss of dependency” and “loss of love and support” from the deceased. The claim included their loss of dependency on his care and other domestic services as a devoted husband and father, and on his income as a hard-working and ambitious self-employed IT contractor, who was building his career to provide for his wife and child.

The claim was settled at a joint settlement meeting. As the case involved an infant child, the settlement was approved by the court, and a sum was apportioned for the benefit of the couple’s child.

If you have suffered serious injury or the loss of a family member as a result of somebody else’s negligence, you can find out more about making a claim by contacting us by email on