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Irwin Mitchell have successfully settled the claim of Ms M, a flight attendant who suffered a head injury whilst working on a transatlantic flight.
Ms M, who was 27 at the time of the accident, had been enjoying her career as a flight attendant with an international airline since finishing university. A successful Tourism graduate, Ms M had initially joined the airline to be paid to travel the world. Having only planned to work as a flight attendant for six months, Ms M loved the lifestyle her job brought, and her job blossomed into a successful career.
In February 2007, Ms M was working on the busy London Heathrow – Los Angeles route. Whilst onboard, she slipped on water in the galley, falling backwards and hitting her head. Ms M tried to continue with her duties, but became progressively unwell during the flight.
Upon arrival at Los Angeles, Ms M was taken to a local hospital where she was admitted. Ms M had started to get a runny nose since the accident, which transpired to be cerebral spinal fluid leaking from her brain. After conservative treatment of this leak failed, Ms M underwent brain surgery in the form of a craniotomy.
As a result of the fall and subsequent surgery, Ms M’s olfactory nerves were damaged, resulting in her losing her sense of smell and taste. She also suffered a range of physical problems, included mobility problems, slurred speech, headaches, and digestive problems.
Ms M instructed Irwin Mitchell whilst living in the US as she continued to receive medical treatment. Her claim was submitted to Ms M’s employers, who initially denied liability. Following lengthy negotiations, however, Irwin Mitchell succeeded in settling liability in Ms M’s favour.
The claim was then quantified, with expert medical evidence required in the fields of neurosurgery, neurology, neuropsychiatry, neuropsychology, rehabilitative medicine, and care. Irwin Mitchell assembled a team of renowned experts to report on Ms M’s condition and prognosis who concluded that whilst Ms M had suffered a head injury which had resulted in a loss of taste and smell, her ongoing symptoms were due to a rare and complex disorder.
The value of Ms M’s claim was disputed by the airline, and the claim was timetabled to go to trial in May 2011. However, Irwin Mitchell were able to successfully settle the claim for a confidential substantial sum in April 2011. Ms M is now using her compensation to rebuild her life and future with the help of her family.
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