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£30m secured for man injured following road traffic accident
On Monday 25 March 2019, His Honour Judge Sephton QC, sitting as a High Court Judge, approved a very substantial award of compensation for our client TTT.
TTT was very severely injured in a road traffic accident in 2012. His injuries included a severe brain injury with initially very dense hemiplegia. He made a remarkable physical recovery and so can now walk fairly well for modest distances. He has, however, profound cognitive impairment such that he has no capacity for managing his finances, conducting his litigation and aspects of his own welfare. He remains behaviourally challenging, volatile and on occasions physically aggressive. After a long period of residential rehabilitation, he was discharged to his own house in the community with a case managed team of full time carers.
Liability was compromised at 75/25 in his favour, which presented a particular problem for TTT due to the ongoing substantial cost of his care package, as well as his long life expectancy (he was 22 years of age at the date of the approval).
As our client suffers with Type 1 diabetes, there were two important consequences in the context of the approval. Firstly, that he was unable to manage his own diabetes and so needed nursing input - which to a significant extent was for an unpredictable need and which contributed to the high annual care cost; and secondly, the Claimant was entitled to ongoing care through a (state funded) Personal Health Budget.
There was a good degree of co-operation between Parties, which included the joint instruction of a facilitator to put in place and maximise the Personal Health Budget. The Claimant had a Financial Deputy, Ruth Wright - Head of Court of Protection here at Potter Rees Dolan Serious Injury Solicitors, with whom the facilitator worked.
The terms of compromise featured a periodical payment index linked of £325,000.00 per annum for the Claimant’s life, which reflected the full cost of the care package. The PPO was in fact constituted of 3 PPOs, which separately could be assigned if certain trigger events occurred. In practice, this achieves the goal of reduced payments in the event of the Claimant returning to residential accommodation or receiving a custodial sentence where his care costs would be significantly reduced. The compromise also featured a Reverse Indemnity in favour of the Defendant which broadly passed back to the Defendant the money value received by the Claimant’s Deputy under TTT’s Personal Health Budget.
Furthermore, a lump sum of net £3.25m was awarded. Capitalisation of TTT’s award if he had a normal life expectancy would be in the region of £27m. This, plus the lump sum, amounts to a total settlement value for our client of just over £30 million.
I am absolutely delighted with the settlement. My client will need every penny to meet his future needs. A very positive element of the settlement was the high degree of co-operation between Parties to fill the funding gap where there was a 75/25 liability split. Both Parties approached this in a constructive way and with imagination. Now we will have enough money to pay for his substantial care and support package in full no matter if he lives to 250!
This was a fantastic settlement for our client. As Head of Court of Protection here at PRD and TTT’s Financial Deputy, it is our/my responsibility to manage the funds received now to ensure that our client receives high quality care and rehabilitation throughout his life time. The constructive way that both sides in the litigation have approached this means that TTT’s future is secure and we will be able to help him to have a good quality of life.
The names and identifying details of the client have been changed to protect the privacy of individuals involved.