Lorna Catherine Hayden V Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells Nhs Trust (2016)

The claimant had suffered a back injury when attempting to transfer a patient from a trolley. She had claimed damages for personal injury and liability was admitted. Judgment in default had been entered.

The defendant applied for permission to serve a defence which pleaded that the claimant had exaggerated the consequences of her accident.

The claimant wished to rely on the evidence of a video evidence analysis consultant who had stated that there were irregularities with the recordings.

The claimant submitted that the defendant was seeking to abuse the process of the court by slipping in a defence on causation by pleading fraud.

HELD:

The effect of the default judgment was that the claimant’s injury was deemed entirely the fault of the defendant and she had suffered some damage as a result of that injury. The loss and damage caused by the defendant's negligence was part of the exercise of assessing damages.

The defendant's application to serve a defence was granted.

The video evidence analysis consultant principally sought to give evidence of what he had seen when viewing the video footage and reading the surveillance logs. No knowledge or skill was involved in that exercise and the claimant already had permission to adduce factual evidence.

The claimant's application was refused.