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Chambers & Partners

Mcmenamin V Ellison


A four day trial against leading counsel (William Audland QC) has been settled for over £540,000 in respect of injuries suffered by the Claimant in a road traffic accident. The primary part of the Claimant’s case related to alleged vestibular symptoms which affected her balance after a high speed road traffic accident.

Although initially believed to have been suffering with  a low level brain injury it became clear as she responded to an extensive period of rehabilitation funded by extensive early interim payments that her present condition was driven by her vestibular dysfunction and depression, both which responded very well to intensive therapy.  An earlier JSM was cancelled at counsel’s insistence to ensure that she could undergo further therapy and joint statements after the treatment could be obtained as well as a successful application for an expert in pension loss made. By the date of the JSM the Claimant had improved  beyond recognition, the Defendant’s experts had no choice but to agree with the diagnoses reached by the Claimant’s experts given her response to rehabilitation and the main issues of controversy were how much provision needed to be made for future therapies should she relapse and how much of an award should be made in respect of her pension loss as although now fit for future employment  she had lost the benefit of her state sector pension. At the JSM the Defendant’s final offer was over a hundred thousand below final settlement however just over three weeks before trial they increased their offer which was accepted by the Claimant.

This is a good example of the merit of working as a team and involving counsel at an early stage, as well as showing what can be achieved by refusing all offers of an early JSM until rehabilitation has been provided.

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David Rivers

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