Siegel v. Pummell – (Brain Injury)
 EWHC 3409 – Wilkie J
Subtle brain injury claimant awarded £1.59m after a 9 day trial in the QBD
18 December 2014
Marcus Grant (instructed By Christopher Dickinson of Dickinson Solicitors) appeared for the Claimant in an action arising out of a whiplash injury arising from a rear end shunting accident at c. 20 mph in which the Claimant, then a 39-year-old Information Technology Enterprise Architect, suffered diffuse axonal injury [“DAI”] at a microscopic level not capable of verification on MRI or CT scanning. He struggled on working without suffering any loss of earnings until 4½ years post-accident. The trial focused on the medical evidence. The Defendant contended that there was no DAI and that the claim was worth no more than £5,000 in respect of minor soft tissue damage to the neck. He attributed the Claimant’s presentation of cognitive, behavioural and physical symptoms consistent with brain injury were in fact attributable to the Claimant’s pre-accident personality and alleged vulnerability to anxiety, and was unrelated to the consequences of the index accident. The Court rejected the Defendant’s case and found that the methodology applied by the Claimant’s medico-legal expert team and employment consultant was sound and preferable. The judgment delivered by Mr. Justice Wilkie marshaled the medical arguments in some detail and provides useful guidance to the profession on the medicine arising at the interface between neurology and psychology.
The Judgment can be found on Lawtel and Bailii: Siegel v. Pummel