Brain injury victim banned from suing over bouncy castle injury


In May 2008, Mr Justice David Steel ruled that the couple who were hosting a children's birthday party were responsible for the brain injury suffered by Sam Harris. Sam suffered a broken skull when a 15 year old boy kicked him in the back of the head on a bouncy castle whilst attending a party, resulting in Sam needing round the clock medical and nursing care.

On 1 August 2008, Lord Chief Justice Lord Phillips, Lord Justice May and Lord Justice Wilson overruled Mr Justice Steel's decision and declared that the couple were not responsible for Sam's head injury and that it was a "freak and tragic accident".

Many people who supervise bouncy castles will be breathing a sigh of relief at this decision as it now means they are not open to compensation claims by parents.

Sam's parents are expected to take their case to the House or Lords as with the way it stands now, Sam will not receive any compensation for his injuries.

Lord Phillips stated that the couple were under no obligation to keep the bouncy castle under continuous supervision and it was not "foreseeable" that it posed a "significant risk of harm".

Phil Gower, Brain Injury specialist at Simpson Millar LLP states "The outcome comes as no surprise and common sense has prevailed. This will hopefully prevent a floodgate of legal complaints between parents and friends over less serious incidents. Unfortunately accidents do happen, so we advise all parents to be extremely vigilant when your children are playing on any kind of inflatable equipment. "

Useful information: brain injury claims

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