Secondary victims: A race between the claimant and the ambulance? – Hardwicke Chambers

Posted August 27th, 2015 in negligence, news, personal injuries, victims by sally

‘It is hard to escape the notion that the rise in the number of secondary victim claims in recent years owes its success to the amorphous concept of ‘proximity’. The test of proximity itself is well established: a secondary victim claimant can only establish a claim in law as a result of witnessing an event or its immediate aftermath. Establishing proximity does not pose much of a problem if the claimant has witnessed an accident itself; what remains controversial is defining the limit of “the event” and its “immediate aftermath”. Having looked at the decisions of the Courts on this issue, one would be forgiven for thinking that the boundaries are imposed somewhat arbitrarily. ‘

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Hardwicke Chambers, 29th July 2015