‘From carers to becoming a true family again’: relatives’ relief after £9 million NHS pay-out assures man’s care for the rest of his life.
The relatives of a man condemned to a life of disability can now ‘move on as a family’ knowing that the money is available to give him the support and independence he needs.
Speaking after the young man and his family secured a multi-million-pound NHS compensation package, Senior solicitor and medical negligence specialist at Wilkin Chapman solicitors, Jonathan Baker, told of the relief of all concerned.
Jonathan has spent several years closely engaged with the man, now in his early 20s, and his family as a total settlement of more than £9 million was negotiated.
As reported, as a boy, he was taken in with an acute medical condition to Grimsby’s Diana Princess of Wales Hospital where his treatment ‘fell short of what should be expected’ and he suffered permanent brain damage. Northern Lincolnshire and Goole NHS Foundation Trust admitted liability in full for his injuries and last week agreed to the final settlement of his claim in the High Court.
Working behind the scenes and in close contact with the family, Jonathan gave his reaction to the news.
“It is a huge relief to the family, knowing that the case is at an end, the money will allow him to live independently, that they no longer need to be his carers and can go back to being a family again,” said Jonathan.
“It has been very humbling working on this case. Although the client should never have suffered the injuries and those injuries were catastrophic – he has retained a hugely optimistic view on life and was determined to make the most of his situation,” he added.
As the months went by during the lengthy legal case, a crucial element that helped the family was the award of interim payments. This allowed the necessary funds for vital care to take place – but was only achieved after admissions were made by the Trust. Meanwhile, the overall investigations were long and complex, involving numerous expert reports.
The final settlement saw the man and his family receive a £2.2 million lump sum, together with annual, index-linked and tax-free payments to cover the costs of his care for life. Those payments will start at £111,500 a year but will increase in December 2020 to £164,500 a year and will continue for as long as he lives.
“It was wonderful to see the interim payments making such a difference to him and his family, and then knowing that this final sum will enable him to maximise his independence for the rest of his life,” said Jonathan.
To take the case to its conclusion, Jonathan added how it was funded by Legal Aid – something that would not have been open to them if the case was brought today, following Government reforms in 2013.
“There is no doubt that it would have been a very different story had this been the case,” he added.