Useful Tools For Approval Hearings

GC
Gatehouse Chambers

Contributor

Gatehouse Chambers (formerly Hardwicke) is a leading commercial chambers which specialises in arbitration and all forms of ADR, commercial dispute resolution, construction, insolvency, restructuring and company, insurance, professional liability and property disputes. It also has niche specialisms in clinical negligence and personal injury as well as private client work.
A useful reminder of how Claimants can prepare for complicated approval hearings in child or protected party cases is the case of BSC v TGL [2022] EWHC 394 (QB).
UK Litigation, Mediation & Arbitration
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A useful reminder of how Claimants can prepare for complicated approval hearings in child or protected party cases is the case of BSC v TGL [2022] EWHC 394 (QB).  In this case, the child pedestrian was 11 years old when he was struck by a car when crossing a road.  The case settled pre-action so there was no schedule or counter schedule.  The sum that Master Davison was asked to approve was £2.35M based on a full liability valuation of £3.525M and a one third reduction for contributory fault.

Master Davison had an Advice from leading Counsel but had concerns at the approval hearing about the proposed settlement.  He thus directed that the parties should prepare a Table with four columns, setting out (1) each head of loss, (2) the claimant's claim in respect of that head, which was to include, where appropriate, the relevant multiplier, (3) the defendant's response with the amount (if any) counter-offered and with brief reasons to include, where appropriate, reference to the medical reports or records and (4) the claimant's estimate of the range of likely court awards. (The final column was to remain privileged.)

Master Davison commented that such a Table is a very useful tool for approval hearings.  This was supplied to him with a Position Statement and a summary of liability apportionments involving child pedestrians. It enabled the Master to approve the settlement. Even though he thought that one third contributory negligence was too high, he considered that the claimant's advisors had valued the quantum of the claim too optimistically and therefore even with a lower reduction for contributory negligence, the overall sum was generous enough for it to be approved.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

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