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£1 million award for woman who fractured her leg in car accident caused by her husband

Posted: 31/03/2017


Penningtons Manches’ personal injury team has secured significant damages for a woman who suffered a serious fracture to her lower leg.

The client, an elderly woman, was a passenger in a car driven by her husband when he lost control of the vehicle causing a collision. Initially there was some doubt over liability in case the insurers alleged the defence of automatism, but liability was ultimately admitted.

The woman sustained a serious injury to her tibia and the bone loss resulting from the accident was so serious that two years afterwards bone reunion had not been achieved despite the use of an Ilizarov frame, metal implants and physiotherapy and expert care. She was unlikely to undergo amputation given her age, but a probable resulting ‘stiff non-union’, as her orthopaedic consultant described it, would leave her requiring extensive care for the rest of her life.

Damages of just under £1 million were recovered.

Philippa Luscombe, partner in Penningtons Manches’ personal injury team, commented: “This case demonstrates how different individual cases can be and how sometimes a claim for an elderly person can exceed what you might expect a younger claimant with a similar initial injury to receive. Because of our client’s old age, her ability to recover and encourage bone growth was massively impaired and the level of ongoing nursing care required, even if she opted for an amputation rather than living with a non-union, would have been significant, given the problems adapting to a prosthesis in old age.”


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