Personal Injury case studies
Please see some of our recent personal injury cases below:
Wrist Fracture - £940,000 compensation
A man who fractured every bone in his wrist in a freak accident at work has received more than £940,000 in compensation after being told he will never be able to work again.
The man, from Manchester, was initially in two minds about taking legal advice and bringing a claim against his employer, but after his contract was terminated only a matter of weeks after the accident he felt he had no choice.
“My client, who was in his 40s at the time of the incident, had his career ended by what at first seemed a relatively innocuous fall,” said Polly Herbert of Slater and Gordon.
“Before the accident my client had worked all his life and had accumulated skills and experience which meant that he could command a substantial salary. But since he was injured, his options have been massively reduced and the financial hardship he and his wife were placed under has been enormous.”
The defendants in the case – the insurers of his employer – initially offered to settle the claim in full for just £70,000, before increasing their offer to £500,000 in 2012.
“Both of these offers – whilst appearing substantial on paper – failed to take into account the long-term hardship my client and his family would be subjected to by his inability to work at the level he had previously done and the care and support he now needs due to his injury,” said Polly. “After securing expert reports to highlight the severity of the injury, we were able to demonstrate the full extent of what he’d been through and negotiate a settlement of just over £940,000.
“My client maintained that he would gladly give up whatever compensation we secured for him to have his right arm - and his old life - back,” said Polly. “Nevertheless this substantial amount of damages will enable him to access support on a private basis that would not be available to him on the NHS, and investigate new avenues of rehabilitation to help rebuild his life.”
Man in collision receives £300,000 compensation
A construction worker who was unable to return to work after he was seriously injured in a high speed road accident, has received more than £300,000 in compensation.
The man was driving his car to work when another motorist lost control of her vehicle and veered into his own. He was rushed to hospital by ambulance, where he was treated for his injuries and underwent surgery to repair a number of fractures. The other motorist was sadly killed in the incident.
Leanne Tattam, a lawyer with Slater and Gordon, said the man – who was in his 50s - sustained such a catalogue of injuries that it affected his ability to work.
“As a result of the accident my client suffered multiple fractures to his pelvis, a fractured wrist, fracture and dislocation to his hip, along with multiple fractures and dislocation to his foot,” said Leanne. “He underwent numerous reconstruction and fixation surgeries – involving the insertion of various metal pins and rods - and although they were successful in the main he has been left suffering from constant aches and pain, and with considerable and understandable limitations to his mobility.
“In addition, he also suffered a head injury and moderate brain injury,” said Leanne.
The defendant in the case was the insurance company of the other motorist, and after admitting liability for the man’s injuries they offered to settle the claim for around £200,000.
“Whilst that was clearly a not inconsiderable amount, it didn’t take into account the full implications of my client’s injuries – the care he would need, and his inability to return to the construction industry in which he had worked for many years,” said Leanne.
“We secured expert evidence from a number of medical specialists, including an orthopaedic surgeon who specialised in hip fractures, a consultant neurologist, psychiatrist, and neuropsychologist,” she said. “These medical experts were in agreement that the extent and nature of the injuries meant that my client could not undertake the physical work he had done prior to the accident, and he was therefore severely disadvantaged on the open labour market. As the injuries therefore affected his ability to earn a living, we factored this into our negotiations.”
Leanne settled the claim on behalf of her client for a total of £310,000.
Scaffolder receives £150,000 for permanent injuries to his elbow
A scaffolder who suffered permanent injuries to his elbow and wrist when he fell from an unsecured ladder at work has received £150,000 in an out of court settlement.
John Foley, a workplace accident specialist at Slater and Gordon, said the Berkshire man, who is in his 40s, was in the process of descending scaffolding at a building site in West London where a block of flats was being refurbished when the incident occurred last year.
“Access to the ground from the first floor level of scaffolding where my client was working was via a 13-foot metal ladder,” said John, a solicitor with the firm. “But unbeknownst to him one ladder had not been properly secured to the scaffolding by the firm he was contracting for, and when he placed his foot on the top rung to climb down the ladder slipped. He fell more than two metres to the ground.”
“But despite several months of physiotherapy treatment, my client has not been able to return to work. He continues to suffer significant pain and stiffness in both his wrist and arm and he remains unable to fully flex, extend or rotate either his left wrist or his right elbow without considerable discomfort,” said John.
“My client has been told that the pain in his left wrist is likely to worsen over time and will remain permanent unless he opts for further surgery which will leave him with a permanent stiff wrist joint but no pain,” added John. “In addition, he has been left with a permanent restriction of his right elbow. It is extremely unlikely that he will ever be able to return to scaffolding or indeed any kind of manual labouring job involving heavy lifting.”
After liability was admitted by the defendant’s insurer, John settled the claim on behalf of his client for £150,000 in December 2013.