When our client, Adnan was knocked over by a jet ski while on holiday in the UK, he suffered horrific injuries. With our help, he made a serious injury claim and received £34,000 in compensation.
AGE OF CLIENT
Injuries to the patellar tendon (knees), repair of medical collateral ligament, and an open fracture of the tibial plateau (legs).
Case settled in April 2021 and claimant was awarded 34,000.
Usha Nayee – Serious Injury Solicitor
*Name of the claimant has been changed for safeguarding reasons.
In April 2019, Adnan was jet-skiing while on holiday. His jet-ski was struck from the right-hand side by another jet-skier who alleged that Adnan failed to give way. There are however different by-laws relating to water sports and who had the right of way on a private lake.
The arguments raised by the Defendant in this matter related to alleged excessive speed by Adnan, with an independent witness statement stating that he was overtaking negligently, and “driving like a maniac”.
HOW WE HELPED
At Optimal Solicitors, we took on Adnan’s case in April 2019 and multi-track solicitor Usha Nayee handled his claim.
Adnan was an experienced jet-ski rider, holding an advanced license, with many years of competitive and non-competitive experience. He was fully familiar with the route and the rules of the lake.
WHO WAS AT FAULT
Adnan provided the rules of the lake which clearly showed the priority route all riders should adopt, with dedicated riding times reserved for non-experienced riders.
The timing of the accident was crucial as the Defendant was inexperienced, having only purchased his jet ski, and obtained his license a month before the accident, and riding at a time reserved for experienced riders only.
Despite the above, the insurers continued to deny liability.
There was an added complication that the limitation on the case may have been 2 years as opposed to 3 years, and we were fast approaching this time limit.
INJURIES, TREATMENT AND EFFECTS
Adnan suffered from injuries to the patellar tendon (knees), repair of medical collateral ligament, and an open fracture of the tibial plateau (legs). Following the accident, Adnan was airlifted by air ambulance to the nearest hospital landing site.
After being taken to hospital Adnan was advised by the doctor that he needed to have surgery on his legs in order to make a full recovery. He decided to go through with the surgery. He was fully recovered within 18 months.
If you are intending to bring a claim for damages, you must be aware of the time limit in which to bring a claim to prevent the claim from being barred by statute.
The time limit varies on what type of claim it is, what country the breach occurred, and whether it occurred on land, Air or Sea.
- Personal Injury – 3 years from the date of the accident
- Clinical Negligence – 3 years from the date of negligence, OR date of knowledge
- Contract Claims – 6 years from the date of when the cause of action accrued.
- Latent Damage (Non-PI cases) - This is 6 years when the cause of action arose, OR 3 years from date of knowledge about the facts of the damage.
Different jurisdictions have different time limits. It is therefore imperative that limitation is investigated at the very start of a claim.
If an accident has occurred abroad, permission of the court will be required to issue outside of the jurisdiction.
Usha Nayee, who handled Adnan’s jet ski claim said:
“we helped Adnan by negotiating a higher settlement than originally offered, and despite the evidence against the client, we pursued this to a successful conclusion”.
The Limitation Act 1980, states that a claim must be brought into the court forum within 3 years from the date of the accident. There are however caveats to this rule, including what country the accident occurred in, as each country has its own jurisdiction, and whether the accident was in the water or in the air. We had to look at whether the case fell within the remit of the Merchant Shipping Act 1995 (‘ MSA 1995’ ).
For the two-year limitation period to apply per s.190(3), the proceedings must involve a claim against a ship (s.190(1)). However, case law would suggest that a jet-ski, such as the one the Defendant was operating at the time of the collision, does not fall within any legal definition of a ship. If the jet-ski is not a ship, then s.190 of the MSA 1995 does not apply, and the limitation period would be the usual three years from the date of accident per s 11 Limitation Act 1980.
Thankfully, pressing on with the claim meant we were able to counter all the arguments raised by the Defendant, and even though liability was not admitted, an offer was made, and Adnan received a five-figure sum for his personal injury and associated losses.
Having advised of the offer of settlement he was delighted at the settlement:
“Thank you so much for representing me and all the support throughout the difficult time for me and my family. We are extremely happy with the outcome and couldn't imagine better solicitor. We will highly recommend your service and your company as we are extremely happy.”
Liability was admitted by the other party and an agreement settlement was reached. Total damages awarded in an out-of-court settlement were £34,000.
HOW CAN OPTIMAL SOLICITORS HELP?
Unfortunately, accidents like Adnan’s are not uncommon. If you have had an accident on holiday, then you could be eligible for personal injury compensation. To learn more, please call our team on 0161 250 7771 or fill out a contact form online.
Contact Optimal Solicitors should you wish to discuss any maritime cases, or should you have any questions on the applicable limitation period.