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Latvian Road Accident Victim Receives £2 Million Award

Tourists or overseas workers who suffer accidents in the UK may feel that they are a long way from home, but they can be confident that English lawyers will pursue their damages claims with professionalism and vigour. That was certainly so in the case of a Latvian worker whose life was changed forever by injuries sustained in a road traffic accident.

The man, then aged in his 20s, sustained very severe injuries, including a fractured skull and traumatic brain damage. He later returned to his homeland and instructed English solicitors to pursue a personal injury claim on his behalf. Liability for the accident was disputed but, despite this challenge, a settlement was successfully negotiated whereby he received 57.5 per cent of the full value of his claim.

Together with a lump sum of £1.5 million, he will receive annual payments towards the costs of his ongoing care and rehabilitation. Those payments will continue for the rest of his life and will start at the equivalent in euros of £16,000 a year. To insulate him against volatility in currency markets and the Latvian economy, they will thereafter be index-linked to wage levels in his homeland.

In approving the sensible settlement, the High Court noted that, due to his head injuries, he has no recollection of the accident. He has difficulty concentrating and suffers from intermittent dizziness and seizures. His injuries negatively affect all aspects of his life and he feels frustrated, depressed and angry. His occasionally unpredictable behaviour has affected his friendships and social life.

The Court acknowledged that money could only serve as an inadequate proxy for the pain, heartbreak and anxiety he had endured. However, the settlement had been carefully structured in accordance with advice from experts on the Latvian economy and offered him financial security for the future.