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High Court approval for a £2.05m settlement on behalf of a claimant who suffered a brain injury in a road traffic collision at the age of 12.
Liability was contested, the Claimant having run out from behind an ice cream van into the path of the Defendant’s passing car, which was travelling within the prevailing 30mph speed limit. The Defendant sought to rely on the Claimant’s “sudden emergence” to deny/reduce his liability. The Claimant contended that the Defendant should have anticipated the danger and reduced his speed further, in which case the collision could have been avoided. Settlement was consistent with a moderate liability reduction.
Quantum issues were also heavily contested, with substantial pleaded losses in respect of earnings, care, case management, Court of Protection and travel. The Claimant had secured employment in adulthood, he had sustained long-term relationships, care to date had been limited to gratuitous help and incapacity remained contentious.
At the approval hearing, the Defendant agreed to pay an interim payment of £275k on account of costs (calculated at 70% of incurred and 90% of budgeted costs (plus VAT and 1%+2% budgeting costs)), in line with the decision in Puharic v Silverbond Enterprises Ltd  EWHC 389 (QB).
The approved settlement brings to an end over a decade of litigation, it having been necessary to wait to assess how the Claimant’s brain injury would affect him in adulthood.
James Arney KC, instructed by Kieron Campion at Slater & Gordon.