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03/05/2016

Budd v South Devon Healthcare NHS Trust Foundation [2016]

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On the 3rd May 2016 HHJ Salomonsen has assessed damages in the four lead claims brought by employees of the Defendant NHS trust for exposure to an irritant gas (a low level exposure to Chlorine) in the course of their employment with the Defendant leaving the way clear for the stays to be lifted on the remaining claims and judgment to be being entered for damages to be assessed.

In this long running claim liability has been in dispute for three years since the issue of proceedings; the Designated Civil Judge stayed a large set of claims pending determination of the first four cases to proceed to trial. Liability was finally admitted in March 2016 and the five day trial was reduced down to a single day assessing the general damages to be awarded.  A framework for future awards was set down by the court and in one of the four cases the Claimant beat her own offer triggering the new automatic provisions of Part 36 introduced by Jackson LJ to empower Claimant’s to make offers that carried a greater sanction.  The hope is that by having the courts guidance in respect of these unusual injuries the other Claimants who still work for the Defendant trust will be spared the ordeal of giving evidence at trial.

David Rivers acted for the Claimants throughout instructed by Kevin Digby at Thompsons Solicitors LLP.

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