16 years later, passing out with abdominal pain he was rushed for emergency surgery. He underwent laparotomy, hemicolectomy and ileostomy. The removal of much of his bowel left him with scarring, urgency of stool, episodic bowel incontinence, pain and an adjustment disorder with anxiety and depression. The injuries won’t get better
It emerged that the 1995 appendectomy was incomplete- the surgeon had left in part of the appendix, which had become infected and started all of the problems. Even the NHS could not deny negligence so the big issue in the case was about compensation.
LG managed to return to work (despite being unable to eat anything until after work because of his shortened bowel, taking spare clothes with him every day, having to deal with accidents at work and in the car being unable to lift a 20k box without severe abdominal pain). This was because he wanted to support his partner through nursing studies and didn’t want his children to think it was ok not to work. The negligence meant he couldn’t play with his children, couldn’t socialise and lived in fear of accidents, which happened several times a week.
Until recently in these circumstances a Claimant might only be awarded a lump sum for disadvantage on the labour market but now there are actuarial studies showing the effect of disability on future earning capacity and proper evidence based calculations mean realistic levels of compensation.
LG eventually had to give up work, but his employers had provided detailed statements about his day to day difficulties which meant there was no suggestion he was trying to ‘play the system’. This is why evidence is so important. He was able to claim long term lost earnings, giving credit only for realistic residual earning capacity in that he hoped, after therapy to retrain and perhaps find a part time job.
Only the NHS will know why the case took 4 years to settle. LG was a down to earth hard-worker who was only ever honest about his injuries, which were life changing, frustrating and embarrassing for him. Even when all the experts agreed the extent of the injuries, LGs case was disputed. The NHS could have saved something like £200,000 by accepting a sensible early offer. Instead the claim ran to 2 weeks before trial, and having been offered £20,000 from the outset, LG received £325,000. The money can’t make things right but it can make life easier- the plan is for them to move out of their rented house and buy a property which they can adapt to meet the needs of the whole family.
Express solicitors took on my case after 2 other solicitors had turned my case down. From the very start ES were very sympathetic, supportive and joined me in thinking that this was a life-changing, horrific ordeal for my family and I to have gone through and subsequently have to live with.
Very quickly the NHS admitted liability and made an early offer of £20,000. Even after admittance they would show very little interest or effort into working to settle my case. All my evidence was argued against, even the severity of my injuries and the struggle I’m left with. After 4 years into the case the defendants own experts agreed in my favor, only then was I sent a very generic, impassive letter of apology by a CEO of the trust.
This was still followed by months of noncompliance to settle and little insight to their reason of why. Even with Ben and the team working to settle the case before it went to court and save money, they still let running costs mount up.
My family and I can’t thank Ben and ES enough for the fight they led for us for the 4 years. The outcome is a life changing amount of money that can give some security to me now that it has cost me my job. From day one of working with ES they gave me no doubts that this would be the final outcome, always in my corner and at the same time leaving me in total control. Ben and his clinical negligence team surpassed all expectations I had during the whole claim and his constant communication and updates always left me feeling satisfied that my case was in the right hands.