Leading personal injury and medical negligence solicitors
Injured client received £550,000 following fatal accident
Mr D* instructed our specialist road traffic accident solicitors in respect of a claim for compensation for personal injuries sustained following a road traffic accident. Sadly, the defendant died as a result of the accident, when she crossed on to the opposite carriageway and collided head on with Mr D.
Early indications from the defendant insurer intimated a denial of liability on the basis that the deceased had suffered a heart attack or other medical condition that caused her to lose control of the vehicle which she could not have prevented. There was no factual evidence to substantiate this and we therefore requested copies of the defendant's medical records, at which point liability was conceded.
Mr D sustained multiple injuries of a very serious nature including a pilon fracture of the left tibia, a comminuted fracture of the right elbow and forearm, a dislocation of the right radial head, a dislocation to the metatarso-phalangeal joint of the hallux and a fracture of the 3rd metatarsal neck (right foot), a fracture to the sternum and 3 rib fractures. He also developed PTSD and an adjustment disorder with depressed mood.
Mr D underwent surgery to fix the fractures to his arm and leg, and an external fixator was applied to his leg for approximately 4 months which meant his mobility was severely restricted. He underwent further surgery but has been left with significant ongoing problems and may require further surgery in the future by way of fusion of his ankle and will always require bespoke boots and modular shoes as a result of the permanent deformity to his foot. It is likely that with the progression of time and once his mobility becomes more restricted, he will require single level accommodation.
Boyes Turner obtained evidence from orthopaedic, psychiatric, care, pension, accommodation and orthotics experts in order to accurately value the claim. The defendants did eventually obtain their own expert reports but were very slow to do so and did not disclose in accordance with court orders – this would have become the subject of an application from ourselves to disallow reliance on the same had the case not settled.
The defendants' expert evidence was almost as supportive as the claimants own, so much so that they did not even disclose their orthotics report as their expert indicated to our client that he had trained under our own expert and agreed with everything he said. The defendants orthopaedic expert went so far as to say that the claimant's evidence and losses pleaded in Schedule of Loss were all justified and reasonable. The only defendant expert that was not supportive was their care expert, who did not even refer to defendant's own orthopaedic evidence and was, in our view, unsustainable.
The defendants had made an offer to settle relatively early on in the case before any definitive medical evidence had been obtained for £200,000. Mr D rejected this on our advice to properly quantify the claim.
A joint settlement meeting was arranged, the defendants only serving their expert evidence 2 days beforehand. At that meeting the defendants made incremental offers, the final offer on the day being £450,000. We advised Mr D to reject as we felt the case was worth at least £100,000 more. Mr D followed our advice and did reject that offer and so the case did not settle at that meeting.
Subsequently though, Mr D advised that he was anxious to settle as he could not properly move on until then. We therefore re-opened negotiations with the defendant and the case settled in for £550,000.
* All names have been changed to protect client privacy.
The service was personal, professional and considered. I was treated so kindly and in the end I knew that not only had I found the right organisation but also the right person.
Boyes Turner client