Compensation Claims

Details:

Reference Number: 5389
Request Date: 11/01/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1 How much money overall has been paid out by Northumberland County Council in compensation as a result of claims (whether or not liability was accepted) relating to potholes involving (a) cyclists and (b) motorists in each of the last five financial years: 2013/14, 2014/15, 2015/16, 2016/17, 2017/18?

Please provide the responses for each year separately.

Q.2 How many individual (a) cyclists and (b) motorists have received compensation as a result of legal claims relating to potholes in each of the last five financial years: 2013/14, 2014/15, 2015/16, 2016/17, 2017/18?

Please provide the responses for each year separately.

Q.3 What is Northumberland County Council’s total expenditure on legal costs defending and settling legal claims, including both their own and the Claimants’ legal costs, for pothole related claims in each of the last five financial years: 2013/14, 2014/15, 2015/16, 2016/17, 2017/18?

Please provide the responses for each year separately.

A.1 - 3 Northumberland County Council confirms that it holds the information you have requested, please see the attached information in response.


Details:

Reference Number: 5566
Request Date: 08/02/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1     Please could you let me have the amount of the costs awarded against the Council on Planning Appeals allowed since June, 2017 to December, 2018

A.1     We do not hold a comprehensive list of costs awarded against the Council on Planning Appeals allowed. We have however been able to run a transaction report of payments made for the period June 2017 - September 2018. Due to the introduction of a new finance system in September 2018 the report cannot be run for the period September - December 2018. 

The transaction report has shown that the Council paid award of costs for Planning appeals which total £107,553 for the period June 2017-September 2018. Paper records show no payments were made for the period September - December 2018.

Q.2     Please could you let me have the following information for the period March to December, 2018.

Q.2a.    The performance figures on all planning decisions during this period.

A.2a     The overall performance on all applications decisions (development type codes 01 to 27) is 2166 applications determined within agreed time out of 3347 applications determined. 65% 

Q.2b    The number of Planning applications that were withdrawn.

A.2b     164 

Q.2c    The number of appeals made against planning decisions

A.2c     24

Q.2d    The number of appeals dismissed 

A.2d     5

Q.2e    The number of decisions that have gone against pre-application recommendations

A.2e    It would take approximately 1,125 - 1,500 hours to get this information together because we would have to look at approximately 4500 applications to manually check to see if a preapp was linked that matched the proposal of the application. We would then need to check the officers response letter to the preapp against the planning applications outcome.

Our database only records that the pre-app was closed when a response has been issued, so we would have to look at each response in our Document management system to see whether or not it matched with the outcome. This would approximately take 15-20mins per application check manually each application.

Refusal under Exemption 12 - Section 1(1) does not oblige a public authority to comply with a request for information if the authority estimates that the cost of complying with the request would exceed the appropriate limit. The public interest test requires Northumberland County Council to confirm that we hold certain information relating to pre application recommendations.  However, the time and cost involved in extracting the requested information would exceed our statutory obligation to comply with the request; e.g. 2.5 days and/or £450. 
 

Q.2f    The number of complaints received at Stage 1.
A.2f     90

Q.2g    The number of complaints received at Stage 2

A.2g     18

 
Q.2h.   How many complaints have been referred to the Ombudsman

A.2h     1


Q.3.   How many staff have left in this period.

A.9    16 employees left the Planning service between March and December 2018
 

Q.4   What are the costs to the Council associated with redundancy agreements.

A.4  There were no redundancies within the Planning Service during the time frame. 


Q.5  What are the costs to the Council associated with compromise agreements.

A.5  There was one compromise agreement within the Planning Service at a cost of £41,7019.18


Q.6 How many temporary staff have been employed by the department during this period and what is the cost to the Council.

A.6  Within Planning Services between March 2018 to December 2018 the number of staff on fixed term contracts are shown in the table below. Please note a number of these contracts were employees acting up into other roles to cover vacancies and sickness. The total cost over this period was £584,572.44. 

Month               Number of temporary staff

March 2018                28
April 2018                   29
May 2018                   29
June 2018                  27
July 2018                   24
August 2018              26
September 2018        24
October 2018             24
November 2018         25 
December 2018         25

Exemptions 

The Freedom of Information Act sets out various exemptions to the right of access. In the present case the County Council takes the view that the information relating to question 5 of your request is exempt under the following provisions. 

• Section 12(1) Exemption where cost of compliance exceeds appropriate limit. 

Section 1(1) does not oblige a public authority to comply with a request for information if the authority estimates that the cost of complying with the request would exceed the appropriate limit. 

(2) Subsection (1) does not exempt the public authority from its obligation to comply with paragraph (a) of section 1(1) unless the estimated cost of complying with that paragraph alone would exceed the appropriate limit. 

(3) In subsections (1) and (2) "the appropriate limit" means such amount as may be prescribed, and different amounts may be prescribed in relation to different cases. 

(4) The Secretary of State may by regulations provide that, in such circumstances as may be prescribed, where two or more requests for information are made to a public authority- 

(a) by one person, or 

(b) by different persons who appear to the public authority to be acting in concert or in pursuance of a campaign,  the estimated cost of complying with any of the requests is to be taken to be the estimated total cost of complying with all of them. 

(5) The Secretary of State may by regulations make provision for the purposes of this section as to the costs to be estimated and as to the manner in which they are to be estimated.  

Notice of Refusal 

Please treat this as a Notice of a Part Refusal as regards the information covered by the Section 12(1) Exemption for question 5 only.



Details:

Reference Number: 5760
Request Date: 12/03/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1   I would like to submit a Freedom of Information request for information regarded compensation cases for accidents involving children on school premises.

Please could provide information for each of the following calendar years:
  • 2014
  • 2015
  • 2016
  • 2017
  • 2018
  • Jan 01 to Mar 01 2019
Please could you tell me, for each of the calendar years listed:

The total number of public liability cases settled (cases where payouts were made) following compensation claims for children injured or involved in accidents on school premises.

The total amount (in £) awarded in payouts to those involved or injured in accidents on school premises.

For the years 2018 and Jan 01 - Mar 01 2019 only, please provide details of each claim settled, including details of the accident, the amount awarded and if possible, a breakdown giving the amount awarded and spent on legal fees.

A.1   Northumberland County Council confirms that it holds the information you have requested, please see the attached information in response.
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5762
Request Date: 13/03/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1    In the last three financial years (2015/16, 2016/17 and 2017/18) please provide me with (a) the number of settlements and (b) the total amount paid by the force as compensation to fire service personnel for injuries sustained while at work or as a result of their work duties. (c) Provide if possible a breakdown of the legal costs to the fire service associated with these claims.

A.1  Two claims
No compensation paid
Legal costs  £632.50

Q.2    For each payout that resulted in compensation of more than £5,000 being paid please provide me with (i) the amount of compensation, (ii) the costs associated with the claim and (iii) a one sentence summary of the nature of the successful claim against your service.

Note: The question relates to payments made in (2015/16, 2016/17 and 2017/18) regardless of when the incident took place or when the claim was lodged. If the settlement was made by your service's insurers it is still information "held" by your authority under the terms of the Act.

A.2   N/A
 


Details:

Reference Number: 6945
Request Date: 07/11/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1     In the last financial year 2018/2019 please provide me with the number of settlements and the total amount paid as compensation to teachers or teaching assistants for injuries sustained at schools or outside schools. For each incident please provide me with the amount of compensation, costs and a summary of the claim.

A.1     There were no claim payments made in 2018/2019 in relation to compensation for teachers or teaching assistants for injuries sustained at schools or outside schools.