Catastrophic injury claims—heads of claim
Produced in partnership with Andrew Wilson

The following PI & Clinical Negligence practice note produced in partnership with Andrew Wilson provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Catastrophic injury claims—heads of claim
  • General damages for pain, suffering and loss of amenity
  • Loss of earnings
  • Loss of pension
  • Care and attendance
  • Accommodation
  • Aids and equipment costs
  • Adapted vehicle costs
  • Medical expenses and treatment costs
  • Case management
  • More...

Catastrophic injury claims—heads of claim

NOTE: On 15 July 2019, at the conclusion of the first review of the discount rate, the Lord Chancellor announced that the discount rate would change to minus 0.25%. The minus 0.25% discount rate came into effect on 5 August 2019. Schedule A1 to the Damages Act 1996 provides that subsequent reviews are to take place within five years of the conclusion of the previous review which means that the next review must commence on or before 15 July 2024.

This Practice Note sets out the potential heads of claim in a case of severe injury and, where appropriate, provides some limited guidance.

General damages for pain, suffering and loss of amenity

Damages for pain, suffering and loss of amenity (PSLA) will be valued in the normal way, using the Judicial College Board guidelines and case authorities.

In cases of catastrophic brain injury, there may be some issue as to the claimant’s consciousness (and therefore their perception of pain). It is true that an award in relation to pain and suffering depends on the claimant’s awareness of his suffering (it is a subjective loss).

However, damages for loss of amenity are not dependent on any proof of awareness. They are based on objective assessment of what the claimant has lost.

Loss of earnings

Where the claimant has suffered injuries which are severe, but which are not catastrophic,

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