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Accommodation; Discount or Dilemma? - Trevor Ward, Fletchers Solicitors

25/10/18. Will the likely change in the discount rate for personal injury losses affect the way in which the Courts deal with the calculation of accommodation claims in serious personal injury cases?

Roberts v Johnstone( 1989) has been a problem for quite some time and not necessarily because of the recent change to the discount rate in March 2017. The current negative discount rate means that the normal Roberts v Johnstone calculation becomes unworkable; it leads to a calculated nil or negative figure for the injured party’s claim for the capital cost of the purchase contribution to the required property. Courts have recently commented on how inappropriate the calculation is ( see JR v Sheffield Teaching Hospitals 2017 and Manna v Central Manchester Teaching Hospital 2017).

The problem has always been the conflict between the payment by the tortfeasor for an asset that is likely to increase in value ( not always ) and therefore create a windfall for the injured party during his/her lifetime ( or more likely his/her estate on their death ) and a calculation of some description that is related to an index that allows for the future increase in value to be sufficiently moderated so as to provide compensation in the form of the required property but which neither under of over compensates the Claimant .Practically the answer has been for the Claimant...

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