- Court of Appeal interprets Part 36 offers in personal injury claim using ‘reasonable reader’ approach (Seabrook v Adam)
- What are the practical implications of this case?
- What was the background?
- What did the court decide?
- Case details
Dispute Resolution analysis: The court held that the appellant claimant had not bettered two Part 36 offers which proposed a split of 90/10 following a road traffic accident where the defendant had admitted primary liability, but disputed causation of injury. At trial the claimant established that he had indeed sustained a whiplash injury but failed in respect of a larger back injury claim. The Court of Appeal held that a reasonable person reading the offers would have properly construed them as relating to liability and causation for both of the alleged injuries. Consequently, the defendant had bettered the offers and so the claimant was merely entitled to conventional fixed recoverable costs. Written by Professor Dominic Regan, director of training at Frenkel Topping Group.
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