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Pedal cycle head injury claims

In some circumstances it may be held by a court that an injured person making a claim for compensation was partly responsible for the injuries. This is called contributory negligence and it can result inthe compensation damages being proportionally reduced.

Contributory negligence may arise where it is felt that the injured person was partly responsible for an accident eg both drivers in a road accident being negligent or an employee's injury being partly caused by his own actions.

It can also be an issue where an injured person has failed to to observe certain safety precautions. This often happens where the injured party in a road accident was not wearing a seatbelt if it is felt that this would have reduced his injuries. A similar situation may arise with a an injured motorcylist not wearing a helmet.

There are also occasional attempts to claim contributory negligence against pedal cyclists who were not wearing a helmet. However, the situation here is less clear since, unlike seatbelts and motorcycle helmets, pedal cycle helmets are not compulsory. It cannot be argued therefore that they are in breach of a statutory requirement and furthermore some argue that cycle are only useful in certain types of accident. Such allegations of contributory negligence against pedal cyclists are resisted, usually successfully.

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Trip on highway
Mrs J tripped on a pothole whilst crossing a service road running parallel to a main road, fracturing her shoulder, wrist and ankle. The Council initially denied full liability for her accident alleging Mrs J was partly to blame for not avoiding the pothole. Cooks arranged a Conference with a barrister and on his advice rejected this. After intense negotiations Mrs J was awarded £17,000.00 she said:
"I had help from the start regarding my claim and found the advice very reassuring. I have never had to make a claim before so was apprehensive but you did a lot to alleviate my worries. Thanks again for all your help and support."
Mrs J from London

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Examples of Compensation Awards for Injury Claims*
Serious Back Injury
Wrist Injury
Serious Neck Injury
Serious Hand Injury
Ankle Injury
Serious Knee Injury
Serious Head Injury

*damages for loss of earnings and other losses and expenses are commonly paid in addition to the injury award and will vary in each case