A young boy, who is just 16 years of age, has initiated a car accident compensation claim against the insurance company of a driver after sustaining a serious head injury on the way to school. The identities of those involved in the case must remain concealed at this stage due to legal reasons. The car accident occurred when the boy took up an offer of a lift to school by 24 year old driver and he went on to share the front seat of the vehicle with a young girl. Neither of the youngsters were wearing seat belts for the journey. In spite of these circumstances, the 24-year-old man drove the car at 60 mph in a 30 mph zone, a decision which resulted in him losing control of the vehicle, veering onto the wrong side of the road and crashing headlong into an oncoming car. The force of the car crash was sufficient to send a small Vauxhall vehicle into a spin before rolling onto its roof, sadly claiming the life of the driver.
The schoolboy launched the car accident compensation claim against the motor insurance company of the deceased driver, a move which saw the insurers accept liability for the car accident having taken place, meaning they would pay compensation. However, the insurance company argued that contributory negligence on the boy’s part meant that less compensation should be awarded. The reasoning was that had the front seat been used correctly, with just one person and a seat belt in place, a less severe head injury would have been the result.
Engineering experts were called in to assess the circumstances of the car accident. After a considerable investigation carried out on the evidence left both at the scene and by the broken vehicle, the engineers concluded that it was highly likely that the boy would have sustained a serious head injury even if a seatbelt had been worn. The medical consultant who had prepared the medical reports for the compensation claim did not comment on this issue in the documents.
The judge overruling the proceedings concluded that the car accident compensation claim provided no evidence that, had the seat belt have been used, the degree of the personal injury would have been lessened. The judge went on to state that it would, therefore, be unjust to reduce the amount of compensation on the grounds of contributory negligence. The insurance company of the deceased driver took the case to the Court of Appeal only to be met with the decision being upheld. The amount of car accident compensation won remains undisclosed at this stage.