Tripping accident - compensation for knee injury despite council denials

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Lyn GibbonsSenior Litigation Executive

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Tripping accident- compensation for knee injury despite council denials

The client’s claim

Our client, Mr A, was visiting a café within a council park with some friends. He stepped up some steps in order to visit the toilets. The steps consisted of paving slabs, one of which was missing, leaving rough, uneven, concrete underfoot which caused our client to trip and fall, suffering injuries. Due to this tripping accident our client suffered a soft tissue injury to his left knee, with pain and swelling. He had a history of previous problems with his left knee. He had a MRI scan of his left knee and had an injection into the knee joint. He ubsequently developed a cyst within the knee which ruptured. He was off work for two weeks and subsequently returned on light duties for a month. Due to his ongoing symptoms he was referred to an Orthopaedic Surgeon and underwent an arthroscopy of his left knee. He was subsequently diagnosed with sero negative rheumatoid arthritis. Despite the arthroscopy, Mr A continued to suffer pain in his knee, particularly when walking, climbing stairs and kneeling. 

Our approach

Having obtained photographic evidence, our experienced lawyer, Lyn Gibbons, sent a full letter of claim to the council, but their insurers denied liability. They first claimed that our client, himself a council employee, had installed the café steps on which he tripped. We pointed out that this was untrue and this misunderstanding seemed to have arisen because after his accident our client had offered to repair the steps. They then claimed that it was the licensee of the café rather than the council who were responsible for the steps. We obtained and disclosed further evidence to show that the council had installed the steps. When there was no further reply we issued court proceedings against the council.

We obtained medical evidence from an orthopaedic consultant who found that given Mr A’s previous damage to his knee, his symptoms had been brought forward by the accident by one to two years.

The outcome

Following the issue of proceedings we made an offer to settle the claim which led to an agreed settlement of Mr A’s claim in a four figure sum, despite the council’s denial of liability.

This knee injury tripping claim was dealt with by Lyn Gibbons, an experienced senior litigation executive, specialising in tripping accidents and other injury compensation claims in Kent, Medway & beyond. Lyn can be contacted on 01622680422 or at