£1.4million settlement reached for long-term damage to ankle
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In June 2012, Miss A had an accident on a property owned by the Defendant. She suffered a severe tri-malleolar fracture dislocation of her left ankle, with serious injury to the joint surface, syndesmosis and soft tissue damage. Despite several operations, she developed a severely painful and arthritic ankle. She also sustained an adjustment disorder lasting for around six months; with further periods of adjustment disorder and a mild to moderate depressive disorder which persisted through to 2015.
Miss A continued to suffer from significant pain, stiffness, restriction of movement and swelling in her left ankle. Her pain management expert anticipated that she was likely to continue to experience pain after fusion surgery and that she would remain disabled. This restricted her mobility and therefore affected her work and leisure activities. Miss A gained a substantial amount of weight as a consequence of the accident and the restrictions that it placed on her mobility and ability to exercise. This caused her difficulties with her ability to network for work and to socialise, over and above those caused by the restrictions on her mobility.
Prior to the accident, Miss A was an experienced and very successful business woman, with a 15 year track record. At the time of the accident she was preparing to launch a new business. She began working for the new venture as an employee. However, she and her professional colleague had agreed prior to the setting up of the new venture, that she would have a 25% interest. Due to the accident, Miss A lost the opportunity to take up the 25% interest in the new venture instead only having a 5% share. Consequently, she suffered the loss of a chance of a substantial income.
Moreover, the new venture had been less profitable and hence less valuable than it would have been had the accident not occurred. Miss A was unable to contribute the kind of time and effort, which she would have contributed, had she been uninjured.
Miss A approached Elizabeth O'Mahony and Malcolm Johnson as expert personal injury lawyers to advise on her case and helped her to obtain evidence from orthopaedic surgeons, a psychiatrist, a pain management consultant and othotist. The team also consulted a forensic accountant to help determine the effect of the accident on Miss A's earning ability and the valuation of her new business.
Following exchange of witness statements and expert reports, and meetings between the experts, a mediation was arranged between the parties. Although the mediation did not conclude the matter a settlement of £1.4m was reached in July 2016.
Miss A said, "Liz was efficient, responsive and helpful at every stage. She always replied to emails quickly and with great care; she was thoughtful and very considerate; she helped me to understand aspects of the case that I struggled with at times and was always patient with my endless questions. I really could not have asked for a better addition to the team and am eternally grateful to her – and to you all – for all your help."
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