M v. M (Unrep) – 08.08.2018
21st August 2018
Marcus Grant represented a 61-year-old construction worker who recovered £495,000 in respect of a head injury in a workplace accident following which he developed epilepsy. He managed to continue working, albeit in difficulty and with a colleague covering for him for two years after the initial accident when he injured his head again whilst having a seizure. His employment was terminated 18 months after that second incident and he developed depressed mood following the loss of his job and financial security and suffered further seizures and some suicidal ideation.
His case was that he had developed a disabling syndrome of physical (including vestibular), neuro-cognitive, neuro-behavioural and psychological symptoms attributable to the original accident, that he was permanently unfit for work and needed a burst of case management and support worker assistance and some light touch case management thereafter, together with a heightened risk of dementia and a reduced life expectancy.
C’s case was not accepted by the D who considered the severity of any head injury to be minimal, notwithstanding the confirmed epilepsy, and that any enduring symptoms (to the extent that their self- report was reliable) were largely psychologically mediated and would resolve swiftly following the conclusion of the litigation and receipt of some CBT such as to enable C to return to some level of remunerative employment. D placed considerable emphasis on failure of effort testing with its neuropsychological expert which was evidence of a measure of conscious exaggeration. It denied any need for case management, support workers or heightened dementia risk.
The case settled through negotiation part way between the Parties’ best positions.