Settlement Awarded for Motorcycle Accident Victim

A settlement has been awarded to a man who suffered serious brain damage after a being involved in a motorcycle accident.

In May 2009, Marcel Beasley was driving his motorcycle along the A453 north of Barton-In-Farbis in Nottinghamshire. Marcel moved to the centre of the road to overtake slower vehicles as traffic slowed while approaching a roundabout. 

Marcel slowed and moved back into the line of traffic to allow oncoming vehicles to pass. When he attempted to move back out into the centre of the road to overtake some more vehicles, he drove directly into a vehicle whose owner had made a quick and unexpected U-turn.

Marcel was thrown from his motorcycle across the bonnet of the car he had struck, across the road, where he landed in a ditch. The emergency services were notified, and he was airlifted to the Queens Medical Centre in Nottingham. He spent several weeks in the facility in a coma until he was transferred to Richardson Mews in Northamptonshire. There, he endured fifteen months of treatment in the facility's specialist unit for brain injuries.

Marcel has been left with limited mobility, and is now wheelchair dependant. He has speech problems, limited cognitive ability and problems with behaviour due to the brain trauma. Due to a brachial plexus injury, his left arm has also been rendered useless.

On his nephew's behalf, Cadell Beasley made a claim for compensation against the driver who decided to take a U-turn, Paul Alexander. The driver admitted that he had not noticed Marcel driving when he attempted to make the U-turn, but denied full liability, stating that Marcel had been driving too fast and was moving in and out of the line of traffic.

The Royal Courts of Justice heard the claim in July 2012. Evidence was presented by several witnesses to Sir Raymond Jack. He eventually ruled in Marcel's favour, stating that even if Marcel had been driving more slowly, the collision with the car still would have caused him significant injury. He also stated that his driving in and out of the line of traffic was not a cause of the accident.

Sir Raymond Jack adjourned the case so that an assessment of Marcel's future needs could be made, but stated that Marcel was to receive interim payments of compensation for Alexander's insurance company. Earlier this month in the High Court, Marcel was awarded a total settlement estimated to be £10 million. This includes a £4.2 million lump sum, and annual tax-free index-linked payments of £175,000.