Top ranked cerebral palsy claims lawyers
£3.7 million lump sum for boy with four limb dystonia
Boyes Turner’s specialist brain injury lawyers have secured a substantial settlement for ten year old boy with four limb dystonia who suffered a brain injury at birth. The claimant was delivered in poor condition after hospital medical and midwifery staff failed to recognise during his mother’s labour that the CTG monitor was showing fetal distress. The negligent delay in his delivery led to the claimant suffering a hypoxic ischaemic injury to his brain, which was confirmed by MRI scans during the first few days of life. The hospital admitted liability after Boyes Turner’s solicitors served a letter of claim. Judgment was entered after proceedings were issued and the case adjourned until the claimant was old enough for the full extent of his condition and the value of his claim to be properly assessed.
Whilst waiting for the claimant’s condition and prognosis to become clear, Boyes Turner secured interim payments from the defendant, which enabled the claimant’s family to provide for the boy’s immediate needs. Sums in excess of £1.3 million were obtained so that the family could buy and adapt a suitable home, set up case management, nursing care and therapy regimes, and purchase specialist transport, equipment and assistive technology without having to wait until the conclusion of the claim. Our special educational needs experts advised and assisted the claimant in securing educational support at school. A Court of Protection deputy was appointed to help the claimant and his family with the management, investment and optimum use of his compensation money.
By the time the court proceedings were resumed, the claimant was known to be suffering from mild cerebral palsy with four limb dystonia. He is clumsy with poor coordination but is able to walk. His fine motor coordination is impaired but he is able to feed himself. His vocabulary is restricted to simple words. His intellectual functioning is impaired such that he will not be able to drive or have the necessary mental ability to be a parent. He has night time incontinence, and his former epilepsy is currently in remission but remains a risk. In addition to his acquired injury, the claimant suffers from sickle cell disease which means that his life expectancy, although long, remains uncertain.
The claimant will be dependent on others for care for the rest of his life. It was, therefore, of paramount importance that his compensation should provide for his care costs to be met for as long as he lives. At a round table meeting, Boyes Turner negotiated a settlement with the defendant which will provide the claimant with both the flexibility of a £3.7 million lump sum, and the security of a periodical payment order (PPO). The PPO will provide index-linked, annual payments for care, case management and Court of Protection costs of £70,000 pa to the age of 17, rising to £145,000 pa from age 17 to 19, and to £153,000 pa for the remainder of the claimant’s life.
Boyes Turner acted for the claimant with the benefit of Legal Aid. The claimant incurred no loss of damages in relation to legal costs.
I try to assist lawyers by explaining, in clear and comprehensible terms, what the relevant issues are and where the strengths and weaknesses of the case lie.
DR PETER DEAR