Litigation Personal Injury 05/03/96

Smith v Storey – QBD 5


Claimant: Sandra Smith, 30, on behalf of estate of deceased common law husband Gordon Smith, 2Incident: Motorcyclist in head-on collision with van

Injuries: Fatal injuries – dead man left 30-year-old wife and son aged 14 months

Award: £70,000 (agreed damages); wife to receive £56,000 with a further £14,000 set aside for son

Judge: Mr Justice Rix

Plaintiff's solicitors: Lorrimer Longhurst & Lees (Cambridge)

Hawksford v Ministry of Defence – QBD 5 February 199Claimant: Barry Hawksford, Incident: Hospital negligence at birth at Cambridge Military Maternity Hospital

Injuries: Hospital staff said to have failed to ventilate or monitor claimant's condition properly in days after his delivery; as a result he suffered oxygen starvation resulting in the most acute kind of cerebral palsy; he is almost deaf in both ears and any attempt at voluntary movement sends him into spasms; his intellect is said to have been unaffected but only his close family are able to understand his attempts to communicate; he enjoys the cinema and TV but will never be able to read or use computer equipment because of involuntary movement; his mother, a former army nurse, has devoted her life to his care but has also brought up two other sons aged 12 and seven

Award: £1.4 million (agreed damages)

Judge: Mr Justice Laws

Plaintiff's solicitors: Offenbach & Co

Johnson v Mid Essex Health Authority – QBD 12 February 199Claimant: Melinda Johnson, 33

Incident: Brain damage following epileptic seizure while giving birth

Injuries: Claimant mother of two, an epileptic since 1981, suffered oxygen starvation after going into epileptic seizure while giving birth; hospital accused of negligence for failure to keep her airways open during the attack; she has been left incapable of doing anything for herself independently and requires 24-hour care at her home; despite the effect of the brain damage she is said to be fully aware of what is going on in her home and anxious to take a part in the upbringing of her children

Award: £150,000 (agreed damages)

Judge: Mr Justice Moore-Bick

Plaintiff's solicitors: Irwin Mitchell