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Boyes Turner’s serious injury lawyers secured a £650,000 settlement for a 13-year-old boy who suffered a brain injury when he was hit by a car whilst rollerblading across a poorly lit dual carriageway. The settlement reflected a reduction of 60% from the claim’s potential full value of £1.6 million to reflect the boy’s ‘contributory negligence’ in failing to check that the road was clear before crossing.

Brain injury, ongoing behavioural problems and post-traumatic epilepsy

Our client suffered a severe brain injury as a result of the accident. After his initial recovery, he experienced problems with behaviour and tantrums. He needed to attend a specialist school. After leaving school, he tried a college course but found that he was unable to cope. He took part time work as a care assistant at a special needs school where his mother also worked. He subsequently developed post-traumatic epilepsy, caused by his head injury. His employment was interrupted during his periods of illness.

Strongly defended claim with lack of supportive evidence

We pursued a claim against the driver of the car which hit our client. The claim was strongly defended by the  driver’s insurers. The witnesses to the accident were all young and their memories of the events leading up the accident were all different. We instructed an accident reconstruction expert to report on the cause of the accident. However, the expert concluded that the driver probably hadn’t had enough time to react to avoid hitting our client after he decided to rollerblade out into the road.

Fighting for our client’s right to much-needed compensation

In cases like this, where our severely injured client’s actions contributed to an accident but another driver was even partly to blame, our client is entitled to a proportionate share of their compensation for their injuries. Our client’s brain injury left him with life-long consequences, affecting his ability to live and work independently. Even a reduced amount of compensation would make a significant difference to his life by providing some support and financial security.

We persisted with the claim. On reviewing all the available evidence, we managed to establish that the driver had in fact seen the claimant much earlier than was first thought and should have had time to take avoiding action. We persuaded the defendant’s insurers to enter into negotiations on liability (fault) and they agreed, finally, to pay 40% of the full value of our client’s claim. The claim was reduced by 60% for our client’s contributory negligence in failing to check that the way was clear before crossing the road.

As our client was a minor under the age of 18, we obtained court approval for the 40/60 liability settlement. With judgment secured, we obtained an interim (advance) payment from the insurers, which paid for our client to have in-patient rehabilitation.

£650,000 settlement agreed (discounted from £1.6 million)

We were then able to work with our client’s family and our medical and employment experts to assess the full impact of our client’s injury on his life and the cost of meeting his additional needs arising from the injury. A round table settlement meeting was arranged and an agreed settlement reached providing our client with £650,000, representing 40% of a full valuation of £1.6 million.

If you or a member of your family have suffered severe injury from an accident caused by somebody else’s negligence, you can speak to our experienced injury lawyers, free and in confidence, by contacting us on 0118 952 7137 or email piclaims@boyesturner.com.