Our Director, Caroline Moore, Senior Solicitors achieved an out of court settlement in a six-figure sum (the family wished to keep exact sum confidential) for the death of a 56-year-old lady, Carol, who died on the 3rd July 2006. The claim was brought by her husband on behalf of her estate, his own behalf and their grandchildren, who were aged 10 and 3 years old at the time of her death. There were failures to diagnose her acute appendicitis on no less than 6 occasions leading up to her tragic death.
A Six-Figure Sum for Our Clients the Widower and Grandchildren of a 56 Year Old Lady who Died from Undiagnosed Acute Appendicitis
The claim was brought by her husband on behalf of her estate, his own behalf and their grandchildren, who were aged 10 and 3 years old at the time of her death.
Our client Tony Baker tells the story:
“My wife, Carol, died in 2006 after emergency surgery. She had made three visits to her GP’s, as well as visits to a Radiologist, a Colorectal Surgeon and a Specialist A & E Registrar, at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust in the two weeks before her death.
An inquest was held at which the family was represented by a high profile national firm of solicitors. The inquest conclusion was that her death was caused by an ovarian abscess (this was wrong. The cause was much later proven to be sepsis from her ruptured appendicitis.
After the inquest I was advised that clinical negligence would be virtually impossible to prove; it would be extremely costly and no No win, No fee agreement could be offered. I was advised to pursue a complaint at Local Resolution level, via the Healthcare Commission and with the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman, all of which didn’t get me the answers I was seeking. In all, I spent almost four years hard work running into brick walls, during which time I had made myself thoroughly unpopular with the Hospital Trust. The Chief Executive refused to correspond with me, and the Trust subjected me to a vicious character assassination before the Healthcare Commission and the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman, which was, I have no doubt, intended to discourage anyone from dealing with me.
I then approached another large local firm of solicitors. They agreed with the national firm of solicitors. However, when I was about to just give up, I was put in touch with Caroline Moore and the following happened:
- She told me the cause of death was wrong and, in her opinion, the source of the problem was appendicitis all along.
- She offered me a No Win, No Fee agreement.
- She immediately issued court proceedings, even though the claim was 18 months out of time,
- She obtained expert medical reports to prove that the hospital’s Histopathology report was incorrect and that the Home Office Pathologist had been misled. This had led to the cause of death established at the inquest, where we were represented by a clinical negligence solicitor and barrister, being very likely to be incorrect.
- It was established that the Hospital Trust had scandalously withheld key information from me regarding the actual cause of the death of my wife. It took Caroline some twelve months of determined effort to extract this information.
- A case was successfully put to the Attorney General to hold a second inquest, which is in itself an outstanding achievement, which I believe any legal professional will confirm.
- The expert reports from very eminent medical professionals, all agreed opinion that clinical negligence had occurred at each and every consultation and that my wife had suffered acute appendicitis and should be alive today, had she received reasonable care.
- Causal links were established to the appendicitis which all other parties previously involved had stated did not exist.
- A trial date was set for the doctors involved in my late wife’s alleged sub-standard treatment.
- Before Trial a request was made by the doctors’ and hospital’s legal teams to settle the case.
- Expert negotiations were conducted by Miss Moore and her appointed Barrister, Mr Paul Stewart – a highly skilled and extremely committed negotiator, with the case being settled out of court, which resulted in the family receiving a substantial settlement.
All of this was achieved in less than two years, demonstrating to me what a highly formidable team Miss Moore and Mr Stewart form, which I am personally able to relate to from my previous unfortunate experiences of using the expertise of the high profile national firm.
Caroline Moore demonstrated throughout a determination and tenacity not only to win against all the odds a case of incredible complexity, which others would not entertain but to achieve a remarkable settlement. Throughout Miss Moore demonstrated a vastly superior knowledge and intuition when compared to:
(a) The other firms of solicitors I approached.
(b) The opinions of doctors given at the inquest.
(c) The opinion of at least one of the inquest expert witnesses called by the Coroner.
(d) The opinions of the Healthcare Commission and it’s expert medical opinions.
(e) The opinions of the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman and her expert medical opinions.
The unanimous opinion of my family is that “Miss Moore achieved the unachievable”.
Caroline Moore is supported by an extremely efficient, friendly and understanding staff.
My message to anyone reading this article will, I hope, be abundantly clear – speak with Caroline Moore, don’t waste years of your time as I did being fobbed off and mislead.
If anyone reading this entry on the wishes to speak with me personally about my experiences, Caroline has my telephone number.