Claims for lost years
Claims for lost years

The following PI & Clinical Negligence practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Claims for lost years
  • The claim and basis for it
  • Common heads of claim for lost years
  • Claims under the Fatal Accidents Act 1976
  • Child claimants

Claims for lost years

The claim and basis for it

This type of claim is made on behalf of a living claimant whose life expectancy has been reduced as a result of the defendant’s negligence. Medical evidence will determine the loss of life expectancy. The phrase ‘lost years’ refers to the period after death in which the claimant would have received earnings, pension or other financial benefit.

Where a living claimant’s expectation of life has been reduced due to the defendant’s negligence, the claimant is entitled to recover damages for their financial losses eg loss of earnings throughout both the period that they are likely to remain alive and also for the ‘lost years’ during which they would have lived but for their injuries. The damages are assessed after deducting the claimant’s own living expenses which they would have spent during the lost years.

The sum to be deducted as living expenses is the proportion of the claimant’s net earnings that they would have spent exclusively on themselves to maintain their standard of living. This usually means that if the claimant and their spouse live alone a 50% discount is appropriate but if there are children the division should be pro rata. However, this conventional 50% discount for living expenses can be displaced by evidence eg if there is a substantial element of saving.

It should be noted that

Popular documents