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You Don't Always Have to Prove Fault to Win Compensation

Obtaining compensation in clinical negligence cases very often requires extensive negotiation and compromise. However, proof of fault is by no means always necessary. In one case, a schoolboy who was born seriously disabled won the right to at least £1 million in compensation despite an NHS trust's consistent denial of negligence.

The 10-year-old boy suffers from cerebral palsy and faces a lifetime of disability. His lawyers claimed hospital staff had mismanaged his mother's ante-natal care and labour. The case was, however, far from straightforward and the trust which managed the hospital disputed liability.

Following negotiations, lawyers representing the boy managed to break the impasse and the trust agreed to settle the case on the basis that it would pay 65 per cent of a full valuation of the boy's claim. Given the extent of his injuries and lifelong care needs, his compensation is expected to run well into seven figures, even after a 35 per cent reduction. The exact sum payable has yet to be assessed.

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