How to Value a Seriously Brain Injured Child's Claim?

A recent Court decision involving a brain injured 10 year old girl has important implications
for seriously brain injured claimants.  The girl suffered brain damage and blindness
following premature birth and a misdiagnosis in her medical treatment.  She was likely to
need care and support in her adult life, but an expert considered it was too early to predict
how dependent she would be as an adult, and so recommended that her care needs were
reviewed when she reached the age of 16.
Usual Law
The normal rule in personal injury claims, even those involving a brain injury, is that all
outstanding issues should, where possible, be resolved in one Court hearing.  This is based on
the public interest in the finality of litigation.  If some losses are too uncertain however, this
may result in the Court awarding insufficient compensation.
Exception
Whilst Courts have always had the power to postpone ruling on an issue they rarely do. 
This decision however found that as the long-term outcome for the brain injured girl was
uncertain and speculative, it was impossible to assess her long term needs or provide an
accurate prognosis of her brain injury until she was 16 years old.  Accordingly the Court
departed from the usual law, in order to do justice, and allowed her to adjourn the assessment
of her future losses until after her 16th birthday.  In the meantime she will receive payment of
her losses assessed up to the current time.
The important decision to postpone the long-term assessment of her future losses claim
disadvantages the Defendant, but the Court found this justified in the interests of justice, as
the nature of her loss was clear, but quantification of it could not be assessed meaningfully.
Conclusion
 
At HeadinjuryUK, our experienced head injury solicitors always work to quantify and
conclude a claim at the earliest opportunity, where possible.  If however the future of a brain
injury or the needs of a brain injured client are too speculative, we advise a traumatic
brain injury client to consider postponing settlement of that aspect of their claim until it can
be properly assessed to avoid under-settlement.  If you have been affected by any of these
issues please contact Clare Langford of Headinjury UK.
A recent Court decision involving a brain injured 10 year old girl has important implications for seriously brain injured claimants.  The girl suffered brain damage and blindness following premature birth and a misdiagnosis in her medical treatment.  She was likely to need care and support in her adult life, but an expert considered it was too early to predict how dependent she would be as an adult, and so recommended that her care needs were reviewed when she reached the age of 16.

What is the normal Law?

The normal rule in personal injury claims, even those involving a brain injury, is that all outstanding issues should, where possible, be resolved in one Court hearing.  This is based on the public interest in the finality of litigation.  If some losses are too uncertain however, this may result in the Court awarding insufficient compensation.

But there is an Exception

Whilst Courts have always had the power to postpone ruling on an issue they rarely do.  This decision however found that as the long-term outcome for the brain injured girl was uncertain and speculative, it was impossible to assess her long term needs or provide an accurate prognosis of her brain injury until she was 16 years old.  Accordingly the Court departed from the usual law, in order to do justice, and allowed her to adjourn the assessment of her future losses until after her 16th birthday.  In the meantime she will receive payment of her losses assessed up to the current time.

The important decision to postpone the long-term assessment of her future losses claim disadvantages the Defendant, but the Court found this justified in the interests of justice, as the nature of her loss was clear, but quantification of it could not be assessed meaningfully.

Head Injury UK: The Brain Injury Specialist Lawyers Here to Help

At Head Injury UK, our experienced brain injury solicitors always work to quantify and conclude a claim at the earliest opportunity, where possible.  If however the future of a brain injury or the needs of a brain injured client are too speculative, we advise a traumatic brain injury client to consider postponing settlement of that aspect of their claim until it can be properly assessed to avoid under-settlement.  If you have been affected by any of these issues please contact Clare Langford of Head Injury UK.

What our clients say

We know that we have been extremely fortunate to have had such a consummate PI lawyer in Andy acting on our behalf but we have also been blessed by having had his support, trust, friendship and loyalty throughout. We cannot ever thank him enough.

The compensation Nicola has received has helped her move from a tiny council flat into a massive bungalow which has been specifically adapted. It has enabled her to have a better life.

If it was not for the help of my solicitor I don't know where I would have been today. He provided a great deal of emotional support and secured compensation at various stages from the insurance company to fund my treatment and allow me to live. He was there from start to finish.

Higgs & Sons acted for us for 5 years until our daughters claim for personal injuries was finally settled. Ian remains a trustee of our daughters trust fund and we now look upon him as a friend.