Cerebral Palsy Settlements Explained

How compensation helps

Anyone living with severe cerebral palsy will require assistance in many aspects of their life. These can include:

  • 24-hour specialist care
  • Specially adapted accommodation
  • Aids and equipment
  • Education costs
  • Assistive technology

However, these can be very expensive, and families struggle to afford them without financial help. This is where compensation comes in. The money awarded is intended to cover the cost of everything that enables a person to lead as fulfilling a life as possible in spite of their avoidable disabilities. Without this compensation, they would not have access to the 24-hour care, specialist accommodation, equipment and therapy they need.  

Compensation misconceptions

Due to the high level of assistance required, a child with cerebral palsy can receive an amount that initially seems very high, often running into the millions of pounds. However, this amount is carefully calculated to ensure all the high level of care required can be provided throughout their life.

Despite this, there can be a misconception that such an amount represents a 'windfall' for the family. To understand how far reaching these misconceptions are, we carried out a survey asking for people's opinions on compensation amounts. The results were startling, and highlighted widespread misunderstanding of the subject. Among the main findings of the survey were:

  • Just 40% think the family of a child born with cerebral palsy because of medical negligence should be awarded more than £1 million
  • More than half (53%) believe £5 million seems too high
  • 7% think compensation should not cover any necessities whatsoever, such as aids and equipment, specialist care and accommodation
  • Just 23% think compensation should be calculated to cover holiday costs, despite holidays generally being considered a necessity for leading a fulfilling life

The findings serve to highlight a perception among many people that compensation amounts awarded to those whose lives have been drastically affected through medical negligence seem too high. This perception is incorrect, and to challenge it we have created the below infographic.

Infographic: Explaining why the sums are so high

The visual explains why the large compensation awards are necessary for children with severe cerebral palsy, and shows the many different factors that must be considered when deciding on a final figure. It also includes a breakdown of typical figures involved. The infographic, which is based on a JMW case that settled for £5 million, shows that even though the amount seems high, it only covers costs to help with things most people take for granted.

Click on the image to see the full infographic and click again to zoom in

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For more information on how our expert solicitors can help, call us today on 0800 054 6512 or complete the online enquiry form on this page and we will be in touch.

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