High Court Addresses Court Approval and Settlement Structure in ZSY v AAA [2023] EWHC 2977 (KB) for Protected Party Injury Claim

Citation: [2023] EWHC 2977 (KB)
Judgment on


In the High Court of Justice decision of ZSY v AAA [2023] EWHC 2977 (KB), several key legal principles were addressed by Dexter Dias KC, sitting as a Deputy High Court Judge. The judgment revolves around a personal injury claim involving a protected party, and it entailed considerations of court approval for compromised claims, anonymity orders, and the appropriateness of the settlement structure for damage claims of a protected party. This article analyses the legal principles applied in this case and their direct application to the facts as presented in the judgment summary.

Key Facts

The claimant, a Latvian national referred to as ZSY due to an anonymity order, suffered severe injuries from a road traffic accident in the UK. The apportionment of liability settled at 57.5/42.5 percent in favor of ZSY was approved by Master Davison on 1 April 2020. The primary focus moved to determining the quantum of damages. A joint settlement meeting led to an agreement, the terms of which required court approval since ZSY is a protected party per CPR 21.10(1). ZSY, represented by a litigation friend, seeks court approval of this settlement, which includes both lump-sum and periodical payments indexed to a Latvian wage index.

The judgment centers on four primary legal principles:

Court Approval for Settlements Involving Protected Parties

Under CPR 21.10(1), any settlement involving a child or a protected party requires court approval to ensure that it is in the best interest of the affected individual. The court examines the settlement’s propriety based on the advice and comprehensive documents provided by the claimant’s legal representatives, who must consider litigation risks and the strengths and weaknesses of the evidence.

Anonymity Orders

The judge issued anonymity orders for both the claimant and defendant to protect their privacy (Article 8 ECHR), overriding public interest and freedom of expression rights (Article 10 ECHR). The claimant is referred to as “ZSY” and the defendant as “AAA” to prevent indirect identification, considering the “jigsaw identification” risk.

Structuring of Damages Awards

The court analyzes whether the structured settlement, including both lump sums and periodical payments, adequately meets the claimant’s needs in accordance with CPR 41.7. This assessment involves considering the claimant’s long-term requirements and preferences of both involved parties.

Indexation of Periodical Payments

For settlements involving periodical payments, indexation is essential to protect against currency market fluctuations and economic changes. The court referenced Thompstone v Tameside and Glossop Acute Services NHS Trust [2008] EWCA Civ 5, which outlines the criteria for indexation methods. The Latvian Monthly Wage Index was suggested as the indexation reference, which the court found suitable.


The settlement and its structure, including indexation based on the Latvian Monthly Wage Index, were approved by the court. The court deemed the settlement to be in ZSY’s best interests and praised the responsible manner in which both legal teams handled the sensitive matter.


The judgment in ZSY v AAA provides insight into the judicial process concerning the approval of settlements involving protected parties. It highlights the imperative to secure the protected party’s interests through careful scrutiny of the terms and conditions of the settlement. The case further underscores the importance of balancing privacy rights with the principles of open justice. By methodically applying these legal principles, the court upheld its protective role and facilitated a resolution hopefully delivering some measure of relief and support to the claimant.