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CC (widow and dependant of JC (deceased)) v TD [2018] EWHC 1240 (QB) - Paul Sankey, Enable Law

18/06/18. A recent case raises the issue of how dependency under the Fatal Accidents Act 1976 is calculated when the parties had started but not completed divorce proceedings and there was uncertainty over the outcome of that process. It is also interesting for its unusual facts.

Introduction

JC was crossing a dual carriageway on foot on 21st June 2014 when he was struck by a speeding car and killed.

His widow, CC, brought a claim under the Fatal Accidents Act 1976 on behalf of herself and her 3 children, aged 22, 18 and 15.

At the time JC and CC were separated. CC had filed a divorce petition and obtained Decree Nisi. She nevertheless claimed that there would have been a reconciliation and that the marriage would have been saved. Her dependency should therefore be calculated by reference to her husband's present and future income. The Defendant argued that the marriage had been doomed and that divorce was highly probably. Any dependency should therefore be calculated by reference to the maintenance she would have obtained within the divorce proceedings.

The Marriage

The couple had met in 1986. They lived together at various addressed, had 3 children and married in 2004. JC had run a couple of businesses which at times had generated a good income. CC had given up work within the travel industry to help with the businesses. The couple had enjoyed a good standard of living and owned 3 properties...

Image ©iStockphoto.com/keesitt

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