Lancashire Suffers Record Compensation Payout
Helen Grieves, Founder and Principal at Grieves Solicitors
Hopefully not many of us will ever have to suffer a life changing injury, but for those that do, it’s surprising how innocuous many of the causes are. We hear plenty of stories about extreme sports incidents, bad rugby tackles or falls when hiking or climbing, but very often the causes of serious injuries are nothing more than a slip or a trip: unfortunately it’s all it takes.
New evidence for this came to light last week as, under the Freedom of Information act Lancashire County Council revealed they’d been forced to pay a massive £1.3 million in compensation and legal costs because of the bad quality of the roads. Though some of the payouts were to drivers, a great majority were to people who had slipped or fallen walking along the pavement or trying to cross the road.
This increase in compensation claims for trips, slips and falls comes party from the extremely poor weather we’ve suffered over the last two winters. Bad roads have crumbled under persistent snow and ice and the cold doesn’t seem to show much sign of stopping yet.
Nevertheless, it does go to show that the courts take these claims immensely seriously. According to the Compensation Act of 2006, compensation for these sort of incidents isn’t solely based upon the circumstances of the incident itself, though that is factored in when it comes to judging who is liable, it’s often based on the consequences of the claim. Expensive hospital treatments, extended leave from work and potential damages to future quality of life all need to be factored in when assessing the compensation due from a claim of this sort and more often than not they can be extremely serious.
This level of claims is, of course, something that the council will need to look into with great seriousness over the coming months. It is a sad twist of fate that the cost of compensation to injuries could probably have covered at least a portion of the costs of repairs and there will no doubt be investigations into how accidents like this can be prevented in the future.
Trips or falls might seem innocuous at the time but the costs to you as an individual can be unprecedented. What is good is that in the UK we have a legal system which is extremely sympathetic towards that and that claims, however minor, are taken with seriousness and very often compensation is awarded based upon the likely costs that will be incurred.
Helen Grieves is Founder and Principal at Grieves Solicitors, personal injury specialists, based in Huddersfield. Grieves Solicitors work with clients across the UK to claim the maximum amount of compensation possible for serious personal injury claims.