Wendy McIlroy, a previously healthy and very mobile woman in her 70s living in Northern Ireland, was a front seat passenger in a car that collided with a parked tractor in January 2016. Wendy suffered serious orthopaedic injuries in the accident – fractures of the cervical spine, thoracic spine, shoulder, wrist, ankle and sternum.
Wendy spent the next six weeks in hospital, undergoing spinal surgery, and then a further month recovering in a rehabilitation centre.
Unfortunately, the injuries and subsequent surgery affected her mobility and left her in daily pain – particularly in her head and back. She also needed further surgery on her shoulder a year after the accident.
Wendy had been due to move to England to live closer to her sons right before the accident but was delayed in being able to do so. Logistical problems for her family were immense, such as where to store her belongings already on their way to England. It was also very clear that the house Wendy had planned to rent was no longer suitable because of the stairs. Alternative single story accommodation had to be found for her to move into after her discharge from a rehabilitation centre in May 2016.
Wendy had been an active, social and independent person before the accident and had planned to continue her work with the elderly as an activities co-ordinator and a Tai-Chi instructor. The accident meant she was unable continue the work she enjoyed so much.
Wendy was also not able to drive anymore because of her injuries. She continues to need single storey accommodation as she still struggles to manage stairs.
Wendy's family instructed Fieldfisher immediately after the accident. Jill Greenfield and Claire Glasgow worked hard to obtain funds from the driver's insurers to provide rehabilitation for Wendy and to support Wendy financially because she was not able to work as planned.
Although the driver's insurers admitted liability at an early stage, they strongly disputed the extent of Wendy's injuries and the impact that those injuries were having on her life. Claire Glasgow was able to gather the necessary medical evidence to support her claim and recently recovered a six-figure settlement on Wendy's behalf to provide much needed financial security and enable her to live in a suitable home. It will also pay for ongoing medical and physiotherapy treatment to help manage her ongoing pain and mobility restrictions.
Wendy said: 'Fieldfisher … have been the most caring and supportive people I could wish for. They have guided me through what has been at times a difficult experience with such help. They have never been too busy to listen and have organised every process and appointment with speed and efficiency. People have said they are 'only doing their job' but in working with Fieldfisher I have never felt this to be the case ... My claim has now settled and I am so grateful for Jill, Claire, Sabida and April's help.'