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Injuries: Claimant, who prior to head-on road crash in 1986 was a successful businessman, underwent complete personality change. He has had to sell his stake in a flourishing manufacturing business and is unlikely to work again. Accident transformed him from an energetic, hard-working man to a "shy and reclusive" shadow of his former self. His memory and concentration are severely impaired and he is prone to bouts of intense fatigue. He has also suffered from acute post-traumatic stress disorder.
Injuries: Claimant pedestrian hit by car in October 1992. He received severe head injuries which left him with brain damage resulting in severe memory and concentration impairment. He now has extreme difficulty in day-to-day living and has difficulty looking after himself.
Award: £325,000 damages
Judge: Judge Bentley (sitting as a deputy judge of QBD)
Plaintiff's counsel: Thomas Saunt
Plaintiff's solicitor: Liddell Zurbrugg
Knight v West Kent Health Authority CA 4 November 1997
Claimant: Samantha Knight, 34
Incident: Alleged medical negligence
Injuries: Claimant suffered gynaecological injuries after 36 hours in labour. She then fell victim to acute depression and her marriage, previously stable, collapsed. Mr Justice Steele awarded £64,000 damages last year, ruling that health authority had mismanaged delivery negligently. Health authority admitted staff should have intervened two and a half hours earlier but appealed on basis High Court award was too high. It had made pre-trial offer of £10,000 to settle the claim.