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For purpose of Victim Compensation, Uber and Grab should be considered taxi companies/ taxi operatio


For purpose of Victim Compensation, Uber and Grab should be considered taxi companies/ taxi operations.

But for their existence, private hire cars (PHC) wouldn't exist: therefore, if a PHC should get into an accident whilst on duty (travelling to pick up passenger) or ferrying passenger, Grab/Uber insurers should be responsible for any damages caused to any victim due to their driver's mistake.

Likewise, food/ goods delivery companies should not just cream their commission without being responsible for the process in which their business is being conducted (motorised vehicles travelling from point to point)... such legal responsibilities will make such e-services / delivery companies much more cognizant about the conduct of their operatives/ staff and ensure safe and orderly operation of motorised vehicles on pavements/roads. Stickers and decals should show which PHC company a driver works for, so that relevant complaints can also be directed to the PHC company concerned.

Widow of cyclist killed in crash gets $4.3m payout

Sum paid for Aussie expat's death in crash after cabby dozed off believed to be highest for dependency claim
May 07, 2018 06:00 am
An Australian widow whose cyclist husband died here after being knocked down by a taxi received some $4.3 million last month - believed to be the largest reported payout for an accident dependency claim here.

The High Court-approved payout, which was mutually agreed by the parties involved, capped a settlement reached some four years after the tragedy and a year after insurers for the taxi driver accepted 100 per cent liability.

In a previously reported dependency claim case in 2016 involving fatal personal injury, the affected family was awarded $2.6 million.

Mr Benjamin Paul Lawrance, 32, was killed on the spot from multiple injuries when a taxi collided into him from the opposite direction as he was cycling on Mandai Road just after 5.30am on July 14, 2014.

Mr Lawrance, an expatriate who had been in Singapore for less than a year, was cycling with others who witnessed the accident.

It emerged that cabby Mohammad Adzhar Ahmad had momentarily fallen asleep when his taxi cut to the right, across the continuous white dividing line on Mandai Road, near Nee Soon Flyover, and rammed into Mr Lawrance.

Adzhar was convicted in August 2015 in a district court, jailed for three months and banned from driving for seven years after admitting to causing death by a rash act.

Last year, the victim's widow, Mrs Sionnan Lawrance, 36, sued Adzhar in the High Court for negligence and sought damages for herself and a three-year-old son.

In claim documents filed, the housewife sought compensation because she and her son had been dependent on Mr Lawrance for support and maintenance.

As a regional manager for an offshore drilling company in Singapore, he was paid an expatriate's package.

His death meant they lost their means of support, and at issue was the projected sum he could have earned over a lifetime to provide for them, given his promising career and future earnings abroad.

Lawyer Grace Malathy, representing Mrs Lawrance, engaged a forensic accountant from Matson, Driscoll and Damico to quantify the dependency claims, whose expert report was meant for scrutiny at court assessment hearings fixed for March.

Among other things, draft affidavits were also prepared and sent to the two accident witnesses - Mr Peter Galloway who in 2016 was in Antarctica carrying out oil exploration work, and Mr Daniel O' Connel who was in New Zealand.

It emerged that the station leader of the oil rig was an approved notary public and sourced to attest Mr Galloway's affidavit.

A notary public is an authorised person who can witness and certify legal documents used in legal cases abroad.

In the end, the court hearings were vacated as the quantum was settled through private negotiations between lawyers from Tan Kok Quan Partnership for Adzhar's insurers and Grace Law LLC for the widow.

The sums comprised $2.1 million in loss of dependency for the widow and $1.05 million for loss of dependency for the child, and another $1.185 million in special damages, among other things.

The settlement sum was approved by the High Court as a requirement since a child was involved as a party in the suit.

"This was a protracted case involving much legwork for a grieving widow," said Ms Malathy.

"Mrs Lawrance was unaware then of the prospect of a dependency claim and had thought compensation was for bereavement."