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Deaths in Custody - Teenage Daughter Succeeds in Claim

If your human rights are breached, you may well have a right to compensation and should consult a solicitor without delay. In a case on point, a teenager whose father died in prison achieved a substantial settlement of her claim against an NHS trust that bore responsibility for his medical care.

The 17-year-old claimed that the circumstances of her father's death in custody from bronchopneumonia amounted to a breach of Article 2 of the European Convention on Human Rights, which enshrines an absolute requirement that everyone's right to life must be protected by law. Her claim was brought in her own right and in her capacity as sole beneficiary of her father's estate.

The NHS trust made no admission of liability. However, following negotiations, it agreed to settle her claim for a lump sum of £19,000, thereby averting the need for a contested trial. The High Court had no hesitation in approving the settlement as appropriate and in her best interests. The money would be paid into court and transferred to her when she reached the age of 18.

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