Gert Nel Attorneys obtains settlement worth more than R10 million for client

2 April 2019

Pretoria – Gert Nel Attorneys, recently obtained judgement for a Road Accident Claim, worth more than R10 million.

The judgement was obtained for a client who was involved in a motor vehicle accident when the insured driver skipped a red traffic light and collided with our client.

Merits was settled 100% in favour of our client.

The client sustained injuries to his neck and back including a fracture of the odontoid process at C2 level in his neck.  He sustained several rib fractures and soft tissue injuries to his hip and right arm. As a result of the injuries he had a fusion done on C1 – C3 levels in his neck. He however remained symptomatic after the neck operation, in respect of pain in his neck.

This led to him not being able to function in the open labour market and as a result could not continue with his employment.

During the assessments done by our Medico Legal team he was diagnosed with a chronic pain syndrome (CPS).

Chronic Pain is often defined as any pain lasting more than 12 weeks. Whereas acute pain is a normal sensation that alerts us to possible injury, chronic pain is very different. Chronic pain persists often for months or even longer.

Chronic pain syndrome (CPS) is a common problem that presents a major challenge to health-care providers because of its complex natural history, unclear aetiology, and poor response to therapy.

Most authors consider ongoing pain lasting longer than 6 months as diagnostic, and others have used 3 months as the minimum criteria. In chronic pain, the duration parameter is used arbitrarily.

Some authors suggest that any pain that persists longer than the reasonably expected healing time for the involved tissues should be considered chronic pain.(https://emedicine.medscape.com/article/310834-overview)

Iwan Martens, Attorney at Gert Nel Attorneys commented that:

“Chronic Pain Syndrome is a condition which is relatively new in the South African judicial system, it is only until recently that this is condition is recognised in personal injury cases”.

“This was the first time that a Court in South Africa awarded damages of this magnitude for this specific condition and are naturally proud of the work that have been done in ensuring our client received just compensation for a very complex injury.”

The team at Gert Nel Incorporated pride ourselves as leaders in the field of personal injury law always striving to ensure that all our clients’ needs are met, we don’t merely submit claims and settle, we strive to be part of the innovation of the South African legal landscape.