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Legal 500 (2013)

Accident in apartment in Malta

Sara Fayed was on holiday with her parents in Malta when she was nine months old. As her mother was making a cup of tea for members of her family in her apartment, Sara, without warning, grabbed the electrical flex of the kettle pulling it off the work surface. Boiling water spilled over Sara’s upper body causing her very serious burns.

The layout of the apartment was such that electrical sockets in the kitchen were located close to floor level where the sockets could be reached by children. This layout would not have been permitted in the UK due to safety regulations in force for many years.

A claim was brought on behalf of Miss Fayed against the tour operator, First Choice, alleging that Sara’s injuries were caused as a result of an inappropriate layout of the apartment.

Liability in this matter was denied throughout by First Choice. After several years, Mr and Mrs Fayed changed Solicitors and instructed Irwin Mitchell. Court proceedings were issued and the matter proceeded to trial. Halfway through the trial, First Choice admitted liability for the accident on the basis that they would accept 90% responsibility for the injuries caused.

An interim payment of £30,000.00 has now been paid to Sara, partly to fund the plastic surgery that she will require. Further payments will be paid when the nature of the injuries are fully assessed over the next couple of years as Sara grows up.

Sara’s mother, Jacqueline Fayed, said, “This was a horrendous incident which still haunts me and which has left Sara with permanent injuries. What made things worse is the fact that the tour operator refused to admit liability and put us through a tremendous ordeal before liability was agreed ……. I am extremely grateful that Irwin Mitchell have been able to obtain funds to enable the treatment that Sara requires”.

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"We were very happy with the outcome of our case, especially as we were initially offered nothing from the Tour Operator. Irwin Mitchell were very professional throughout and we are very happy with the outcome."

Chris and Michael, Worksop 

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