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30 July 2010 Summary


Industry News
Summary of Recent Cases - Substantive Law
Summary of Recent Cases - Costs
Summary of Recent Cases - Civil Procedure


Editorial: Mavericks and the Small Claims Track

Personal Injury Articles

Bolam and Bolitho, The importance of: Ministry of Justice v Cheryl Carter [2010] EWCA Civ 694 - Shyam Kapila
In Carter, the trial judge’s natural sympathy for the claimant led him to a conclusion that the Court of Appeal found unsustainable in law. The Court of Appeal emphasised that the correct test for breach of duty in clinical negligence cases is that which can be found in the dictum of McNair J in Bolam v Friern Barnet Hospital Management Committee [1957] 1 WLR 582: “the standard of the ordinary skilled man exercising and professing to have that special skill... acting in accordance with a practice accepted as proper by a reasonable body of medical men skilled in that particular art”.

The Emergency Budget 2010 and the impact on PI/FA claims - Amanda Fyffe, RGL Forensics LLP
Whilst the 2010 emergency budget covers a host of cuts and rises, this article considers those changes affecting an individual’s income and the implications for claims made with a loss of earnings element, either derived from employment or from their own owner managed businesses. As such, there is a focus on the changes in tax legislation, rather than commentary on revised Governmental budgets and the changes to the welfare system.

Medico-Legal Articles, Edited by Dr Hugh Koch

Appraisals and cognitive coping styles associated with chronic post-traumatic symptoms in child road traffic accident survivors, Paul Stallard and Elisabeth Smith (Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 48:2 2007, pp 194-201) - Dr Paul Ebson
This study highlights the importance of psychological factors, namely thinking style, in the persistence of symptoms associated with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in children. The authors examined 75 children and young people aged 7-18 who were involved in a road traffic accident and had attended an accident and emergency department eight months after their accident.

The use and abuse of Psychometric Tests in Medico-Legal context - Adrian Skinner and Hugh Koch
Expert reports commissioned from psychologists and, to a lesser extent, psychiatrists, will frequently refer to the use of specialist psychometric tests. These have tended to be popular with Courts, as they assign quantity to variables that have a large subjective component; for instance, a depression inventory tells us not only that a person is depressed, but how depressed they are. Assessing the value and appropriateness of the use of these tests can pose difficulties for the Court as questions are asked about their reliability and validity.

Mediation & ADR Articles, Edited by Tim Wallis, Trust Mediation Ltd

Mediation: the nitty gritty of using cost sanctions, and avoiding them - Tim Wallis, Trust Mediation Ltd
Halsey1 is the starting point on mediation and costs sanctions, but this 2004 Court of Appeal decision is by no means the last word. This article briefly reviews Halsey, summarises cases where the court has considered the reasonableness of a party’s refusal to mediate, examines judgments where the court has considered conduct more widely and concludes with a look at the power of judicial encouragement when coupled with a warning about costs sanctions. This review will enable practitioners to consider what might be best practice when managing cases with a view to putting pressure on the other party(ies) to negotiate and or mediate whilst also avoiding the prospect of adverse cost sanctions. Only some of the cases directly concerned personal injury cases but the principles are clearly applicable.

Marketing for Solicitors

Marketing Winners and Losers: Search and Social Media - Jenny Cotton, Mortons Marketing
Do the tried and tested principles still apply? Do the new technologies confirm or change established practice? Recently many are commenting on the growth of Facebook and their need to become involved. How does Search compare/ compete with Social Media? Search is accountable but is social media more engaging? Where should your practice budget be allocated?

Book Reviews

Guide to Slipping and Tripping Cases by Charles Foster and Ben Bradley
Reviewed by Aidan Ellis, Temple Garden Chambers

Charon QC

Charon QC, July 2010
The right to arrest war crime suspects