The claimant, a motor cyclist was involved in a motorway collision with a van. The collision was entirely the fault of the van driver. The collision resulted in the below-the-knee amputation of the claimant’s right leg.
Before the accident the claimant and her husband had had a very active life – they enjoyed climbing, walking, falconry, motor cycling and caravanning.
The amputation had a profound effect, not only upon her work but also upon her social life and that of her husband.
The insurer of the van was reluctant to accept that a lower-limb amputation could have such a profound effect as the claimant had asserted. Therefore there was a large gulf between the parties’ respective valuations of the claim.
At the mediation the motor cyclist spoke to the insurer’s representatives at length, explaining just how much her life had changed as a result of the amputation.
At one point during the mediation she removed her prosthesis and demonstrated just how difficult life was for her with an artificial limb. The eloquent way in which she spoke demonstrated to the insurer’s representatives that the insurer needed to revise upwards its valuation of the claim which resulted in the settlement of the claim.
The mediation provided the claimant with the opportunity to speak directly with the insurer, something which would not have been possible within the litigation process. Had the litigation continued, the claimant would ultimately have given evidence at the trial but that evidence would have been given to the judge hearing the case and would have been subject to cross–examination. She would not have had the opportunity to convey so powerfully to the insurer how her injuries had affected her.