parent vegetative state

How To Claim Compensation When A Parent Is Left In A Vegetative State

Find how to claim compensation when a parent is left in a vegetative state following an accident and a child is considering claiming compensation.

Is a dependent child entitled to a dependency payment when the caring parent has suffered an injury in an accident, which has put him or her in a vegetative state and therefore he/she is unable to provide for the dependent child?

Vegetative State Compensation Response

For any type of personal injury claim to succeed – someone other than the injured party must be considered legally at fault for the accident that caused the vegetative state to a parent.

See our articles explaining how to show fault in two of the most common types of accident in the UK – namely road accident claims and work injury compensation.

What Is A Vegetative State?

A vegetative state is most likely to have been caused by a head injury experienced in the accident.

A vegetative state refers to the situation when an injured party is awake, but does not show signs of awareness. This differs from a coma – when a person is not awake nor conscious. It can be temporary, continuous or permanent. See the full definition in the UK by the NHS.

Financial Dependency, Fatal Accidents And Children

Let us presume that fault can be proven. Generally speaking – dependency claims in personal injury relate to fatal accidents.  Following a fatal accident, certain classifications of dependents (including children) can make a claim by virtue of the Fatal Accidents Act.

The financial dependency claim is calculated based on part of the deceased’s income ordinarily being used to support the dependent children.

When the injured party survives an accident – clearly the Fatal Accidents Act does not apply. The injured person (potentially via a litigation friend) makes a personal injury claim.

In your example – the caring parent is in a vegetative state and hence unable to earn an income. The personal injury claim here would typically far exceed that of a fatal accident dependency claim.

For example – the lost income claim would be for the rest of what would have been that person’s working life if the vegetative state is permanent (plus there are many other heads of loss in addition to lost income, including a very significant general damages claim).

If you would like to discuss the accident that caused the vegetative state to your parent in more detail – please do not hesitate to contact us by telephone or online.