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Below-knee amputation settles for £4.05m


James Arney KC, instructed by Lisa Fairclough at Irwin Mitchell (Sheffield), has settled a below-knee amputation claim after JSM for £4.05m.

Injury to the 34-year old claimant arose from an accident at work, when a section of machinery became detached from machinery and fell on the Claimant’s foot.  Liability remained live in that contributory negligence was alleged by the Claimant’s employer.  The Claimant’s case remained that fault lay entirely with his employer or the supplier of the machinery.  Rather than bring the supplier into the litigation, the Claimant used s.1 of the Employer’s Liability (Defective Equipment) Act 1969 to extract an admission of primary liability. 

As to quantum, the following matters were relevant to settlement: –

  • The Claimant’s future earnings were compromised both by his physical injury (impacting manual occupations) and language issues (affecting sedentary alternatives).  An issue remained as to whether he should be treated as unemployed as well as disabled, where he had not returned to work but his employer had yet to terminate his employment.
  • Care and case management issues included additional assistance for childcare in respect of future children, and the need for live-in care in the last few years of life due to the long-term effects of reduced mobility.
  • Prosthetics issues included whether separate water and sports activity limbs were required, whether lifelike cosmeses should be provided for some limbs, and the specification of the primary microprocessor limb.
  • In respect of transport-related claims, an attempt to insist that the Claimant should rely on the Motability Scheme was resisted for the reasons set out in section L3 of Facts & Figures 2022/23.
  • General damages were sought with RPI indexing of JCG 16th Edition figures from 9/2021 in accordance with the JCG Introduction narrative of Lambert J.
  • Significant dispute remained in respect of long-term therapies and increased holiday expenses.

Settlement was ultimately reached at a level close to an age-adjusted equivalent of the award in Riley v Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust [2022] EWHC 2417 (KB).

Related Barristers

Personal Injury
Clinical Negligence
Costs & Litigation Funding

James Arney KC

Call 1992 | Silk 2021

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Related Practice Areas

Personal Injury




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