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Somewhere between whiplash and testicular torsion - Personal Injury and Clinical Negligence

I arrive at my desk at 8.45am, boot up my computer and make myself some cereal and coffee. I check my e-mails and see that I have received some replies from medical experts, detailing their availability for a clinical negligence trial next year. I make a note of this in preparation for reporting back to the Partner dealing with the case.

On my desk sits a couple of files with instructions attached. The first is from a Personal Injury Associate, requesting me to draft an application for Specific Disclosure, Witness Statement and Draft Order for one of his clients who has suffered a whiplash injury as a result of a road traffic accident. The second is a returned memo from the Head of Department approving my draft letters on one of his fatality claims.

The first task is urgent, so I spend the next few hours researching the CPR, considering appropriate precedents and drafting the application. Feeling slightly mentally drained, I then prepare a return memo and leave the file on the Associate's desk before squeezing in some time to finalise the letters on the second file to be sent out.

During lunch, my calendar reminds me that I am to attend a telephone conference with counsel and client on a sensitive clinical negligence case, so I pull out the file and sift through the expert reports and instructions to counsel.

It turns out that the client had suffered testicular torsion and the matter in dispute is the time frame in which the testicle could have been 'saved'. After a couple of hours feeling slightly 'uncomfortable' whilst making notes on the particulars of the case, it has been decided by counsel that there is no longer a prospect of success in the case. The conference ends and I discuss the case action plan with the principal solicitor in the team. I have always enjoyed sitting in on these conferences, as they allow me to see how expert counsel deals with each case logically, legally and emotionally.    

When I return to my desk, I make a note in my calendar to prepare the attendance note and report to both counsel and client by the end of the following week. Whilst doing so, another Associate from the team asks me to carry out some research into vehicle suitability for a disabled client, the value and specifications to be incorporated into the client's Schedule of Special Damages. So I then spend the rest of the day looking at the prices for top of the range cars!  Given that it's Friday - I'd say that's not a bad way to end the week!

Blog post written by Mike Wong

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