Limitation and Date of Knowledge.
The Claimant, who is severely and permanently disabled, pursued his action against the defendant for his disabilities arising from Myodil being used in a procedure in 1973 when he was aged 15-16.
The court had ordered a preliminary hearing to deal with the issue of Limitation, the Defendant contending that the applicable date of knowledge was as early as 1980 when the Claimant was told that he had ongoing back problems.
The Judge found that Myodil could cause late onset problems and that no damage had been caused prior to July 1995.
The Claimant was not told anything specific in relation to the cause of his back problems in 1980 and even if he had made further enquiries at that time, the Judge found that this would not have led to attribution being formed for the damage from Myodil.
The Judge also rejected the Defendants argument that the date of knowledge was at the date when the Claimant (who was a solicitor) read about Myodil Group Litigation in the Law Society Gazette as there was nothing to link the Claimant’s symptoms at that time with that litigation.
It was held that the cause of action arose when the Claimant was first diagnosed with suffering from post-Myodil adhesive arachnoiditis on the 22nd October 2012.
Proceedings had been issued on the 15th October 2015 so within the statutory three year limitation period.
In addition, the Judge also held that, had it been necessary, he would have exercised his discretion under Section 33 in any event.
Another useful case in terms of limitation and attribution for the damage caused.
Such cases will always turn on their own specific facts and in this case, the fact that the claimant was a solicitor and had read about the Myodil Group Litigation in the Law Society Gazette did not fix him with a “date of knowledge” at the point when he read that article.
For the full Judgment, click here (PDF Download)