Serious Injury - heard and decided in one day!

Serious Injury - heard and decided in one day!

Many injured workers express frustration about the delays in having their serious injury cases heard and determined by the County Court - there is annoyance at the delay in the case being listed, there is not always a Judge to hear the case on the day they finally get to court, and the worker may have to come back many months later for when a Judge is available. Then once the case is over, the worker can wait many months for the Judge to hand down the decision. On 26 April a County Court judge heard a serious injury application for one of our clients - it started in the morning and then the Judge handed down his judgment in the afternoon - and thankfully he found that our client had suffered a serious injury! We were claiming a pain and suffering certificate for a client who suffered ongoing lower back problems after lifting heavy bundles of paper at work in 2005. He had previously suffered some lower back pain, but never as bad as this. After hurting himself on this occasion he had a few weeks off work and soon after returned to work on light duties. Although he has continued working those light duties, he suffers ongoing lower back pain and takes pain killers on a daily basis. He used to enjoy activities such as golf, but was no longer able to play golf due to his ongoing lower back pain. He was also also not able to enjoy travelling with his family. The Defendant decided on the day that it did not require any of our client's doctors to be cross-examined. Our client gave evidence in the morning and then closing submissions were made by Counsel - so the entire case was over by lunch time. The Judge then indicated that he would give his ruling that afternoon. He handed down a decision in our client's favour - accepting he had a serious injury in repsect of his pain and suffering. We will now enter in to settlement negotiations with the Defendant solicitors and hope to settle his damages claim in the coming months.

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