Mr Thomas instructed Express Solicitors in January 2015 after sustaining an injury following an accident at work on 29th July 2014.
Our client was employed as a Heating Engineer for a company called Robert Heath Heating Limited. Our client’s main job role consisted of fitting radiators. On the day of the accident our client was instructed to collect a radiator from the suppliers before fitting the same at a customer’s property. It was whilst our client was in the process of lifting the radiator on to the brackets on the wall that he felt a sharp pain in the base of his spine, subsequently causing him to let go of the radiator and drop the same on to the floor.
A Claim Notification Form was prepared and forwarded to the Defendant’s insurers who began investigating the claim. It was alleged that the Defendant had failed to provide our client with adequate manual handling training and failed to carry out a suitable and sufficient risk assessment which if completed, and relevant training provided would have allowed our client to carry out the task safely.
The Defendant’s insurers admitted liability and accepted full responsibility for our client’s accident, thereafter our client’s medical records were obtained and a Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon instructed to comment upon the injuries that our client sustained.
Our client was examined in March 2015 where it was confirmed that he had sustained an injury to his lumbar spine. Although our client was examined 8 months post-accident, he continued to have significant lower back pain, however a further opinion could only be provided regarding a prognosis following an MRI scan being undertaken.
Following the necessary investigations, updated records were obtained and forwarded to the medical expert who decided that a re-examination was required at this stage, due to ongoing symptoms. Following the re-examination, our client was informed that the ongoing symptoms that he was experiencing would improve slightly to a degree however he would still have back pain which would interfere with his day to day duties.
It was advised by the medical expert that our client may need further investigation and treatment within the next 10 years as a direct result of the accident. Spinal surgery may cost in the region of £10,000 – £12,000 but the symptoms that were being experienced were directly attributable to the accident.
Our client was advised that he would be at a disadvantage on the open labour market if he were to lose his job. Given the current back symptoms that our client experienced, he was finding it difficult in carrying out his daily duties at work which involved bending and twisting in awkward positions to access pipework or when lifting heating equipment.
A statement was taken from our client whereby he explained the concerns that he had with regards to his ongoing restrictions at work and detailed information as to the types of jobs that he was now able to take on compared to those pre-accident. The statement covered the continuing impact that the accident was having on him in his personal life also.
A barrister was then instructed to review the papers and provide an advice on the value of the claim based on the finalised medical evidence. Instructions were then drafted to the barrister requesting him to draft the necessary documents before forwarding the same to the Defendant’s insurers in anticipation of an offer of settlement.
The medical reports were disclosed to the Defendant’s insurers along with our client’s schedule of special damages which set out the financial losses and expenses that he had incurred to date or may incur in the future due to the accident, however the Defendant’s insurers failed to make an offer after 21 days of receiving the documents.
Court proceedings were then issued and shortly after the Defendant’s insurers made an offer of £20,635.00. This offer was discussed with Mr Thomas and the same was rejected as it was too low. Following negotiations, the Defendant’s then agreed to increase their offer to £28,000 which was accepted by Mr Thomas in full and final settlement of his claim.