£2,500 Awarded to Client After His Previous Solicitors Only Promised Him £200

My client was involved in an accident at work in August 2012. Briefly, whilst he was assisting with a delivery from a large articulated lorry, the normal procedure involved removing pallets from the lorry by the assistance of forklift trucks, however on the day of the accident there had been no forklift trucks available and so he had been instructed by his supervisor to lift the pallet off the lorry. Whilst in the process of doing so with the assistance of 3 other colleagues, suddenly they could all no longer hold one of the pallets and it started to fall to the floor causing my client to suffer injury to his arm.

The case was previously dealt with by other solicitors when primary liability was admitted, however as there were issues with the medical evidence and causation, particularly given that despite my client attending hospital and a follow up appointment with his GP after his accident occurred, there was no mention of the accident itself in both entries, nor was there mention of his arm injury when he attended the appointment with his GP; and consequently it was indicated to my client by his previous solicitors that his case was only going to be worth in the region of £200.

As my client was extremely unhappy with this advice and with the overall conduct of his previous solicitors, he then instructed Express Solicitors in August 2013 to take over conduct of his case. Initially it was a case of sorting out the medical evidence and seeking further treatment for the client as recommended by the medical expert in his report; however when payment to cover the cost of the treatment was sought from the Defendant Insurers, it was indicated that they may seek to resile from their previous admission given the issues with the medical evidence. Our request for payment to cover the treatment cost was then refused.

Court proceedings were then subsequently issued, and problems with the case continued in that the Defendant Solicitors in their defence sought to limit the Defendants admission which was made pre issue which we vigorously disputed as set out in the reply to defence which was subsequently filed and served. Furthermore, the Defendant Solicitors were also not confirming whether the Defendant would now fund the cost of the treatment which was previously sought which again added complexity to the matter in that without him having this treatment we were unable to finalise the medical evidence and work out the value of the case.

Pre issue the Defendant Insurers had put forward a Part 36 offer of £1,000 which we considered as being too low given the injuries suffered and the financial losses involved; however after proceedings were issued, the Defendant Solicitors then put forward an increased offer of £2,500. Although the medical evidence was not yet finalised and we were therefore not in a position to know for certainty the true value of the claim and following a telephone conference call with his barrister where full advice was given, my client nevertheless decided that he wished to accept this offer. My client was extremely grateful to have been awarded £2,500, particularly given that he had been assured by his previous solicitors that his case was worth no more than £200!

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