It was alleged that as a result of a failure to deliver on time, Mark was exposed to an unnecessary period of a slow heart rate leading to brain damage. He suffered severe spastic quadriplegia, cerebral palsy, blindness, profound intellectual impairment and epilepsy as a result.
Mark was born in December 1990 and a firm of Solicitors local to his parents was instructed in 1991. Unfortunately, they failed to progress the matter and the matter transferred to Linder Myers in August 2000.
Following our initial assessment of the evidence, we invited the Defendant’s Solicitors to admit liability. They asked us to delay our investigations whilst they considered this proposition and, in June 2001 they confirmed that they were not instructed to admit liability.
We found it necessary to instruct fresh experts because those who had previously been used would not have been our experts of choice in a claim of this complexity and value.
We experienced difficulties in obtaining up to date condition and prognosis evidence both because of the lengthy waiting period of the expert and because Mark underwent a fundoplication in 2005 and a hip operation in October 2006 which prevented him from being re-examined.
Expert evidence was eventually obtained from an obstetrician and a midwifery expert, a paediatric neurologist and a paediatric neuro-radiologist.
We also got expert evidence from a paediatrician, an educational psychologist, an IT expert, a physiotherapist, a nursing care expert, an occupational therapist and an accommodation expert.
In addition, evidence was obtained from an independent financial adviser regarding periodical payments and from a Deputy on Court of Protection costs.
No admissions were made and a Part 36 offer by the Defendant of £500,000 was rejected. The matter was listed for a trial for 12 days in November 2008.
In October 2008 settlement proposals were put forward by the Defendant on a 100% liability basis. A settlement was reached which was approved by the court in 2008 for a lump sum of £1.6million with periodical payments of £160,000 in the first year and £179,000 thereafter.
Life expectancy was considered to be to the age of 30 to 34 however, sadly, Mark has died since the settlement was reached. Julia Bridges was the solicitor on this case.
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