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Boy Run Down by Reversing Neighbour Receives £600,000 Award

As some football and rugby players will confirm, the consequences of head trauma may not be immediately apparent but can prove devastating as the years go by. In a case on point, a boy who was knocked down by a neighbour as she reversed out of her driveway received £600,000 in agreed damages.

Aged six at the time, the boy sustained a skull fracture in the accident. He was alert on admission to hospital and, following tests, no brain abnormalities were detected. As he grew older, however, his parents became increasingly concerned that his speech, language and learning difficulties might be linked to the head injury.

In the light of a neurosurgeon's evidence, a claim was launched on behalf of the boy, now a teenager, against the neighbour. She denied liability for the accident, positively asserting that she had taken all reasonable care and kept a proper lookout. The alleged connection between the boy's difficulties and the relatively minor head injury was also hotly disputed.

Following negotiations, however, a £600,000 lump-sum settlement of his claim was agreed. Given the clear risks that would be involved in a contested trial, the High Court had no hesitation in finding that the sensible compromise was in the boy's best interests. Properly managed, the settlement sum would provide a solid financial foundation on which he could maximise his potential.