£235,000 awarded due to defective farm equipment

The female claimant was awarded damages of £235,000 after her long-term partner died due to defective farm equipment injury.

Accident circumstances

The accident was classified as a work injury claim as the claimant's partner was employed by the defendant to work as a labourer on his poultry farm.

On the day of the accident he was using a loading machine which overturned due to a piece of safety equipment being defective or removed. As the loading machine overturned it crushed the claimant's partner and he died instantly.

The claimant and their three children were left without a father and the claimant was left without a partner. He had been the only one who was bringing money into the family home and they were therefore dependant on his income.

He had been earning about £12,500 a year and this would therefore be a considerable loss to the family. They had also suffered a loss of the services that he had provided both as a partner and as a farther.

The claimant therefore brought a claim against the defendant on the basis that they had breached their health and safety duties towards their employers. This negligence had caused the accident which ultimately led to the death of her partner.

The defendant admitted liability.

The circumstances of the accident also resulted in a criminal investigation and the Managing Director of the defendant Company pleading guilty to criminal offences. He was sentenced to prison for twelve months.

Conclusion and Settlement

The parties were able to reach an agreement in respect of damages at £235,000. This was approved by the Court given that the family would have relied on his income by seventy five percent until the youngest of the three children finished full time education. This would have reduced to sixty six percent thereafter.

The damages were split by the Court on the basis that £190,000 would be awarded to the claimant and each of the children to be awarded £15,000. The Court was to invest the children's damages until they attained the age of eighteen.