Judge praises couple’s care for daughter

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A COUPLE have been praised by a judge, for the “extraordinary” love and care they have given to their five-year-old disabled daughter, when he approved a settlement of more than £1.5m to improve her life in future .

Tegan Elise Booth suffered cerebral palsy during her birth at Pontefract General Infirmary in 2007.

Her mother Julie Wilson and father Mark Booth from the Castleford area were in the High Court in Leeds yesterday as damages were agreed against the Mid Yorkshire Hospital NHS Trust.

In addition to the £1.57m lump sum, much of which will be used to convert a home suitable for Tegan, payments will also be made each year to cover the cost of her future care, Simon Taylor QC representing the family told the court.

Approving the settlement Judge Mark Gosnell said disaster had befallen the couple when a much loved child was born to them but “not in the way you would have hoped.”

“The hopes you had for her future have been dashed aside. Having said that you have provided an extraordinary level of love and care and made her life as pleasurable as it can be.”

He knew they had done that in their current limited accommodation. “I don’t know how you have coped over the last few years but I commend you for having done so.”

He said the money would be used in the first instance towards a new home to make life for them all “a little better.”

“I hope that will happen sooner rather than later and that your lives will be transformed by that property.”

The judge said the couple would also receive some money for themselves and suggested in view of all their hard work both looking after their family while pursuing the legal claim, that they consider treating themselves, possibly to a holiday.

After the case the family’s solicitor Tony May of Chadwick Lawrence said Tegan was “very severely disabled” and wheelchair bound but with support was able to attend school.

“Her parents are both very pleased with the settlement that has been reached today it is going to transform all their lives.

“It is nice to see such an outcome at the end of a case which will make a huge difference to them all.”

Pritesh Rathod representing the Trust told the judge: “We are pleased a settlement has been reached.”

“I take this opportunity to offer the apologies once again from my clients for the injuries the claimant received at her birth.”

He said it was obvious from the statements and reports in the case that her parents had provided “many hours of devoted care, often in quite trying circumstances.”

“We hope this settlement will try and ease those circumstances and improve Tegan’s quality of life.”