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Settlement Awarded for Road Traffic Accident in Kenya

03 December 2015

A coach passenger injured in a road traffic accident in Kenya settles her claim against the insurer of negligent coach company.

Slater and Gordon Lawyer: Jaime Padron is a Travel Solicitor at Slater and Gordon in Manchester.

Settlement: Confidential

What Happened: In 2010 in Kenya, the driver of a coach misjudged a manoeuvre and collided into a lorry causing death and personal injuries to its passengers.

Our client, aged 20 at the time of the accident, survived but sustained significant injuries.

Impact: Our client is described as a ‘beautiful and confident individual’ who worked as a beautician/stylist. Because of the accident, she sustained significant injuries to her face, to the extent that she remains disfigured to this day despite exhausting most medical avenues.

Further, the damage to our client’s optical nerve has rendered her blind in one eye and it will remain so until medical science is successful in the treating of optic nerves for this type of damage.

She became self-conscious and changed her career and this impacted upon her psychological state.

The continued medical appointments, examinations, operations and on-going litigation added to the stress and resolution of the litigation helped achieve a sense of closure on what has been a traumatic episode to her life.

How Did Slater and Gordon Help? Slater and Gordon are instructed by the underwriters of a well-established travel insurer to administer Legal Expenses Insurance on behalf of its policyholders, of which our client was one.

Because the procedural and substantive laws of Kenya applied to our client’s case, this firm had no jurisdiction to act. Instead, a lawyer in Kenya was appointed and this firm had a key role in helping our client progress her case. The matter progressed slowly, however, because the procedures in Kenya differ to those that might be expected in the UK. Taking a proactive approach, we sought to isolate issues which a court in Kenya might ultimately have to consider and, considering tactics, and upon entering negotiations with the insurer of the coach company, a settlement was reached in October 2015 and concluded this long-standing case. 

Decision: The substantive laws of Kenya governed the recoverability and quantification of damages. Our client’s claim settled for a sum that was in line with that advice, taking into account her present and future needs, and her keenness to compromise the claim and reach a conclusion.

She is now looking to move on with her life and will be turning a new leaf this coming 2016. We wish her the best of luck for the future.

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