APIL president Brett Dixon said:
“Ms Smith’s case highlights an area of our justice system about which we should be ashamed. The law on bereavement damages in England and Wales is desperately out of touch. The price of a life is valued at an arbitrary figure and anyone other than a spouse or civil partner and some parents of under 18s are not deemed close enough to the deceased to make a claim for their loss and suffering. Let’s not forget that their loved ones would still be alive were it not for the negligence of others. Bereaved families deserve better.
Of course, no amount of money can ever replace someone who has been killed, but the law treats bereaved families in Scotland with much greater understanding. In Scotland, the amount awarded relies on legal precedent and a proper examination of the closeness of the bereaved to the deceased, to ensure that any payments are fair and this has been the case for 40 years. An overhaul of the law in England and Wales is greatly overdue”.