Former Golf Star Injured at Work Sues Employers. Even Though They're His Own Parents
Byline: Brian Horne and Graham Grant
HE was the driving force behind a successful confectionery business that began with his mother making tablet at the kitchen table.
But Blair Paterson, an executive at his family firm, Tilly Confectionery, sued his parents in Scotland's highest civil court - over a workplace accident that left him with a badly injured ankle.
The talented golfer, who now struggles to play nine holes on his weekly outings, yesterday won the fight for damages, expected to amount to [pounds sterling]75,000.
Mr Paterson's life changed when he fell from a ladder and his ankle was damaged as he crashed 8ft onto a warehouse floor.
His foot went through a rung in the ladder, twisting his foot and breaking bones in his shin.
Mr Paterson, 28, of Tillicoultry, Clackmannanshire, raised a civil action at the Court of Session in Edinburgh against the firm and parents Peter and Elisabeth Paterson, 60 and 59 respectively, demanding around [pounds sterling]350,000.
Yesterday, judge Lord Woolman said he was considering damages expected to be more than [pounds sterling]75,000, but a further hearing is to be fixed to finalise the calculation.
It is understood Blair Paterson has not fallen out with his parents and the sum is likely to be paid by the firm's insurers.
The court heard that before the accident in June 2008 Mr Paterson was very active, playing badminton and squash, jogging and swimming as well as golf.
From an early age he showed considerable aptitude for the game, becoming a member of the Scotland Boys Golf Coaching Squad.
'He competed in national and international events from the age of 16,' noted Lord Woolman.
Mr Paterson studied sports science at Stirling University, drawn by their top golf team, and held a sports scholarship awarded by the university and the Royal and Ancient Golf Club.
He captained a team which won the British Universities stroke play championship in 2005.
But while at university, he gave up his plan to become a golf professional, switched to a degree in business studies and joined the family firm.
The court also heard that Mr Paterson now walks with a limp and after an hour or so his ankle becomes very painful. …