Compensation has been awarded to a cyclist who suffered severe brain trauma after he was knocked from his bicycle by a negligent driver.

In September 2010, John Wellock (65) of Greater Manchester was cycling along the A62 in Oldham when his bicycle was struck by a driver pulling out in front of him. He was knocked off of his bicycle, and-in spite of wearing a helmet-suffered serious brain trauma and fell into a coma.

John spent the subsequent nine months in hospital undergoing treatment for his injuries. He attended intensive care rehabilitation, and underwent therapy for his injuries. His wife was forced to give up her job in order to be able to care for him full time so that he could finally return home.

In Oldham Magistrates Court the following year, the driver involved in the accident admitted that he was guilty to driving without due care and attention. As a result of this admission of guilt, John made a claim for traumatic brain injury compensation against the driver's insurance company.

The insurance company admitted that their client was liable, and £2 million of compensation was negotiated as settlement after an investigation had been conducted on his future needs. The money will go towards providing John with support and care in the future, and will allow him to continue his recovery. John will continue to receive intensive care and rehabilitation.

After the case was closed, John stated:"I believe wearing a cycle helmet saved my life, I've been campaigning to try and make them compulsory for all. Anything that can be done to improve safety for cyclists is extremely important."

Elaine-John's wife-added that "The settlement is a massive relief and a weight off our shoulders. We can now look to the future as we know that John's care needs will be taken care of for the rest of his life".

Cyclist Awarded Compensation for Broken Wrist

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A cyclist who broke his wrist after being hit by a car at a junction has received an undisclosed sum as compensation for his injury. 

In November 2010, John Agius (62) was cycling along the High Street in Benfleet, Essex, when a car struck him down while emerging from a road junction. John was thrown onto the car's bonnet, and broke his wrist due to the force of the impact. 

John was immediately transported to hospital where emergency surgery was performed on his wrist. Several months after the accident occurred, John was informed by medical professionals that the bones in his wrist were not fusing as they should and that he would need to undergo a second operation to correct this. 

In an attempt to encourage the bones in John's wrist to fuse together, doctors inserted a bone graft from John's hip into his wrist during the second surgery. This measure was not entirely successful and half a year after the accident occurred, John underwent a third surgery to attend to the numbness that he had started to notice in his hand.

Despite the three operations, John is still unable to lift heavy weights with his left hand and often requires assistance for basic tasks both at work and at home. John had to take six months off his job as a rescue and recovery driver due to his injury. John admits that he is now wary of riding his bicycle again and conscious that he will never fully regain the strength in his left hand.

John sought legal counsel, and made a claim for compensation for being hit by a car at a junction. The driver of the car denied liability for John's accident, stating that John had been negligent himself and partially responsible for his injuries. 

After some time negotiating between the two parties, an undisclosed settlement of compensation for being hit by a car at a junction was negotiated. It is believed that this settlement is the full amount initially claimed by John. 

Judge Finds Split Liability in Pedestrian Car Accident Case

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A judge at the Belfast High Court has declared split liability in a case of a pedestrian being hit by a car, stating that the woman's intoxicated state was contributory to the accident.

In September 2010, Stacey McCaughey (24) was walking home after an evening with friends in the nearby inn. As she was walking along the Carrickmannon Road in Balloygowan, she was struck by a car. The emergency services were notified, and she was immediately taken to hospital. After initial treatment, she was placed in intensive care. She remained there for four days, suffering from a frontal lobe contusion, a spinal injury and multiple fractured bones. Due to brain trauma, she suffers severe mood swings, headaches and memory loss to this day. She also has significant facial scarring.

Stacey sought legal counsel, and made a claim for compensation for a pedestrian hit by a car injury against the driver of the vehicle-Brian Mullen. She alleged that he had been driving too quickly along the unlit road, and would not have been able to avoid her. 

Mullen and his solicitors disputed this claim, stating that Stacey herself had been under the influence of alcohol and was wandering across the road. Therefore, she had been negligent in her own safety. A forensic engineer was consulted, and he confirmed Mullen's version of events. Mullen claimed that he swerved to avoid the larger group of friends with whom Stacey had been travelling, but could not avoid hitting Stacey.

Due to the dispute in liability, the case was brought before the Belfast High Court. Mr Justice O'Hara heard the case. Evidence was presented by the forensic engineer and the police-who supported Mullen's testimony that he had been sober the night of the incident.

The judge supported Stacey's allegation that Mullen had been driving too quickly along the unlit road, and thus was acting irresponsibly in such conditions. He reduced her settlement from £110,000 to £44,000-a reduction of sixty percent due to her contributory negligence. He stated that "by walking in the middle of a dark, unlit road while drunk and incapable of being alert to traffic".

Woman Receives Undisclosed Amount in Car Injury Compensation

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A woman-who broke both her arm and her leg when a car knocked her down at a zebra crossing-has received an undisclosed amount in compensation for her injuries. 

In December 2011, Janet Churchley (57) from Hull was crossing the road at a zebra crossing on Carr Lane after finishing work when she was struck down by a car. The impact broke Janet's leg, and when she fell to the ground, the landed at an awkward angle which caused her arm to fracture. The emergency services were immediately notified, and she was treated at the scene before being transported by ambulance to the Hull Royal Infirmary.

Due to the extent of Janet's injuries, she was confined to a wheelchair for three months. During which time, she was entirely dependant upon her husband for basic tasks such as washing or dressing, and was unable to make the journey upstairs so was forced to sleep on her sofa. Janet also had to undergo surgery to ensure that her broken arm and leg healed properly. She has been left with scars on her body due to these injuries.

Janet was unable to work for nearly a year after the accident occurred due to her injuries. She is now only able to work part-time. She has also become wary of crossing the road, even at zebra crossings, where it is normally deemed safe to do so.

She sought legal counsel, and made a zebra crossing injury compensation claim. The driver of the vehicle that hit Janet admitted that he had not seen her while crossing the road as he had been distracted. Despite this admission, his insurance company was slow in acknowledging how much compensation Janet was entitled to.

Janet was awarded an interim settlement while the negotiations were ongoing to cover her medical fees, and when such negotiations were eventually completed, Janet received an undisclosed sum as compensation-believed to be in the high five figures.

Value of Compensation Awards in Ireland Increases

The Irish Independent has printed a report which shows that the value of compensation awards in Ireland has increased by 22% in comparison to last year. 

The Irish Independent has released information today that shows the value of compensation awards in Ireland saw an increase of 22 percent in the period between January and June of 2014 in comparison to the same period in 2013. €144 million was paid out in compensation for the first six months of this year. The increase is attributable to an increase in claims received during 2013, and those claims being resolved early 2014.

Conor Pope-the Irish Independent correspondent responsible for the story-has written that the overall number of claims for compensation has actually decreased from the 2013 numbers this year, and he speculates that this is due to the economic recovery of the country. The report also states that the average value of compensation in Ireland is €22,000. Claims involving motor accidents account for 75 percent of the total amount of claims received. 

The Irish Times have released a similar report which analysed the increase in compensation awards in Ireland, and where they came from. Their reporter-Brian Byrne-identified a year-on-year increase in public liability claims of 30 percent, motor liability claims of 24 percent and employer liability claims of 10 percent.

Brian Byrne also reported that approximately 40 percent of personal injury claims which are settled directly between claimants and insurers. He reported that insurance companies should make public compensation awards in Ireland that are settled "behind closed doors" in order that there is visibility on competitiveness, premiums and on false or exaggerated claims.

Both reports fail to express concerns about "third party capture", in which insurance companies try to lowball accident victims with inappropriate settlements of compensation before the victim even has the chance of speaking with a solicitor. Negotiations "on the steps of the High Court" have also become increasingly common, particularly with claims against the HSE. 

A solution for the lack of visibility of compensation awards has been suggested. If there were a register base on the government's new "Recovery of Certain Benefits and Assistance Scheme"-launched in August-insurance companies would have to obtain a certificate of benefits from the Department of Social Protection before settling any injury compensation claims. It would not be difficult for the department to then compile data regarding the actual value of compensation awards in Ireland.

€1 Million Awarded to Traffic Accident Victim

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The family of a Dublin resident has been awarded €1 million in compensation after the grandmother of the family sustained major brain trauma as a result of being struck down by a car. 

In September 2011, Elena Schiopu (60) was crossing the Morehampton Road in Dublin. While she was pushing her granddaughter in her buggy, she was struck down by a car that was attempting to undertake the car that had given way to Elena as she was crossing. 

Elena thought that she only suffered cuts and bruises as a result of the accident, so returned home with her granddaughter, who was unharmed in the incident. Some time after the accident, Elena developed slurred speech and experienced weakness in her limbs, and went to hospital for an examination. 

Elena was then admitted to hospital, where her condition deteriorated so rapidly that she was forced to remain in the intensive care unit for seventeen days. Eventually, Elena lost all of her ability to communicate, and was diagnosed with a quadriplegic brain injury. In 2012, Elena was transferred to a nursing home for specialist care. 

On behalf of her mother, Elena's daughter claimed pedestrian accident brain injury compensation against the driver of the vehicle. The driver-Eamon McElwain of Donnybrook in Dublin-contested the claim. 

In their action, Elena's family argued that McElwain had undertaken the stationary car when he should have realised that it was not safe to do so. McElwain argued that he had not been speeding nor was he guilty of dangerous driving, and Elena herself was negligent as she had failed to look for oncoming traffic as she stepped out from behind the stationary car. 

After much negotiation, a settlement of €1 million of compensation for pedestrian accident brain injury was agreed upon by both sides. Ms Justice Mary Irvine of the High Court in Dublin was told of the circumstances of the accident, and of Elena's life-changing and tragic injury. The judge approved the settlement for the family, and extended her sympathies to them for this "distressing case".

The courts have awarded a teenager for injuries sustained in a bus accident when he was twelve years old a settlement of compensation valued at €9 million.

In February 2009, Carlos Tesch (twelve years of age at the time of the incident) was walking along the Herbert Road in Bray, County Wicklow, with his friends when he came across a group of youths who had previously threatened the young boy. In order to avoid the gang, he ran across the road. As he was running, Carlos was hit by an oncoming bus. 

Due to the force of the impact, Carlos sustained serious head injuries. The emergency services were notified, and he was transported to hospital, where he was diagnosed with a fracture to the base of his skull. Carlos is now unable to speak or walk without aid, and is reliant upon the care of his parents for the rest of his life. 

On behalf of his son, Hans Tesch made a compensation claim for the catastrophic injuries that Carlos sustained in the bus accident against Dublin Bus. The defendants denied their liability for Carlos' injuries, stating that the driver could not have foreseen the young boy running out onto the street before him. The driver also stated that he had been driving well within the 50km/h speed limit, and therefore was not at fault. 

The case was brought before the High Court, and Dublin Bus was found 70% liable for Carlos' injuries. It was revealed that although the driver was within the speed limit, he was talking to a passenger just before the accident occurred and was therefore distracted from driving. 

The decision made in the High Court was appealed, and the case was brought to the Supreme Court. The case was heard again, and the Supreme Court upheld the High Court's decision. The case returned to the High Court so that damages could be assessed. 

Ms Justice Mary Irvine heard the case at the High Court, and deemed €9 million as an appropriate settlement of compensation for his injuries. The judge stated that she was fully aware of what parents had to give up for their children in the cases of catastrophic injuries. 

The judge was informed that Hans gave up his managerial job in order to care for Carlos full-time, and twice made the journey to China in order for his son to receive stem-cell treatment. Carlos currently attends the Spanish Institute. 

Woman Receives Compensation After Falling of Ladder at Work

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A woman who dislocated her wrist after falling off of a ladder at work has been awarded compensation by a judge in court. 

In February 2007, Nicola Starmer (42) of Waterford was employed in the Great George's Street, Waterford, branch of the retailer Argos. Nicola went to the store's stockroom to collect goods to deliver to a customer, and found that she had to climb a ladder to reach the product, as it was placed on a shelf high above her. As she was climbing down the ladder with the product under her arm, she fell backwards, landing on her right arm. 

Nicola was initially unaware of any damage to her arm, and continued working. Later on the day, a pain in her arm grew stronger and she attended the Accident & Emergency department of her local hospital. X-rays of her wrist were taken, and it was discovered that she had dislocated her wrist. 

The medical staff at the hospital stabilised her wrist injury by inserting pins into her wrist, and Nicola was discharged from hospital later that day with an above-the-elbow plaster cast. Due to the extent of Nicola's injury, she was prevented from continuing her position as a front-of-house assistant at the retailer's. 

Nicola sought legal counsel, and after speaking with a solicitor, she made a claim for compensation for fall from a ladder at work. Argos denied liability for Nicola's injuries, and the case went before Mr Justice Raymond Groarke at the Circuit Civil Court. 

As a part of Argos' legal defence, they claimed that Nicola had been trained how to use a ladder and that the company should not be held responsible for her injuries. However, Nicola refuted this claim, stating that the safety training that she had received was watching a DVD demonstration on how to use a ladder, and there had been no practical element. She told the judge that she had never been trained on safety procedures in the stockroom. 

After hearing that Nicola attempted to collect the goods only because the store was short-staffed, the judge found in her favour and awarded her €25,000 in settlement of her claim for a fall from a ladder at work.

Motorcyclist Receives £6.1 Million in Compensation

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A man who was involved in a motorcycling accident in Germany has been awarded £6.1 million in compensation by the Birmingham High Court. 

In August 2009, Shane Booth (39) of Solihull in the West Midlands went on a motorcycling holiday in Germany with a friend. The pair were travelling along the B500 Schwarzwaldhochstrasse back to their accommodation in Baden-Baden after visiting the Nurburgh Ring when a tractor travelling in the opposite direction suddenly turned left in front of them, causing Shane to drive into the side of it. 

The emergency services were notified, and Shane was transported to hospital. He suffered severe brain damage, and remained in a coma in a German hospital for several weeks after the crash. He was returned to the UK after he finally regained consciousness, and the formed Sales Director for IBM was admitted to Coventry Hospital to continue treatment for his internal injuries. Shane also received fractures to his bones in the incident. 

Shane was transferred to a specialist rehabilitation centre in Leamington Spa. He went through two years of rehabilitation in order to regain his ability to speak, and he learned to walk again. Despite these advances, Shane will never be able to return to his employment, nor will he be able to partake in many of his leisure time pursuits. 

Shane sought legal counsel, and made a claim for compensation for a motorcycling accident abroad against the driver of the tractor. The driver had subsequently been convicted of causing bodily injury by negligence. Since the guilt of the driver was not in doubt, the only issue that remained to be resolved was to ensure that Shane received an adequate settlement of compensation for his accident. 

A settlement of £6.1 million was negotiated between the parties to account for Shane´s injuries, his ongoing medical costs and his future loss of earnings. The settlement was approved at the Birmingham High Court, after which Shane said "While I do get frustrated with needing support to do simple tasks, looking back at pictures of me, I recognise how extremely lucky I am to even be alive."

A woman who suffered severe brain damage-and is now unable to care for herself-after involvement in a quad bike accident in Tasmania is to receive around £175,000 in compensation. 

In December 2011, Holly Raper of Chorley in Lancashire was working on a farm in Tasmania while she took a gap year to pursue her hobbies of travel and photography. While on the farm, one of her duties was to herd the cattle while on a quad bike. One evening, the quad bike that she was using tipped and rolled over her. 

Holly was airlifted to hospital in a coma, where she was diagnosed with a closed head injury that would result in severe brain damage. She was kept alive on a life-support machine until she was considered in good enough health to be flown back to the UK in March the following year. She was transferred to Preston Hospital in Lancashire, where she remained for fifteen months before being allowed to return to her family home in July 2013. Holly still requires constant care, and is fed through a tube in her stomach and breathes through a tracheotomy. 

The owners of the farm-David and Jocelyn Bowden-were found to be in breach of the Workplace Health and Safety Act in Tasmania by failing to provide Holly with a mechanically safe quad bike, and the farm supervisor Jason Haines received a fine for failing to insist that Holly wore a crash helmet while using the vehicle. The Tasmanian common law, Holly's family were not eligible to make a claim for quad bike accident compensation against the negligent parties. 

Holly's family had to appeal to the Tasmanian Workers Rehabilitation and Compensation Tribunal for quad bike accident compensation instead. After assistance from solicitors in Tasmania, Holly was awarded Au$290,000 (circa £175,000) was awarded to Holly for the injuries that the sustained. This is the maximum allowable compensation settlement that she could have received. 

Unfortunately, because Holly´s family were unable to claim quad bike accident compensation from the insurers of the farm owners, the burden of caring for Holly for the rest of her life will be put on the National Health Service and Holly´s parents. Holly´s travel insurance policy with Columbus Direct did not cover the cost of repatriating her back to the UK, and Holly´s parents have had to rely on the support of friends to raise the six-figure sum it cost to bring their daughter home to be cared for.