Enhancement of Compensation Awarded in Motor Vehicle Accident Case: Supreme Court’s Judgment

In a significant legal development, the Supreme Court of India has delivered a judgment regarding the enhancement of compensation in a motor vehicle accident case. The case involves an appeal against the award passed by the Motor Accident Claims Tribunal in a matter concerning a minor victim and the insurance company. Stay tuned to understand the implications of this judgment on similar cases in the future.


  • The appellant filed a claim petition against the owner/driver and insurer of the offending vehicle under the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988.
  • The accident occurred when the appellant, her husband, and minor son were on a rickshaw van and were hit by a speeding Matador van.
  • The appellant’s son suffered permanent disabilities due to the accident, leading to the claim for compensation.
  • The Tribunal partially allowed the claim and awarded Rs. 2,00,000/- to the appellant.
  • The High Court dismissed the appeal without providing any reasons.
  • The appellant filed a special leave petition in this Court challenging the dismissal of the appeal.
  • After hearing both counsels, the Court is inclined to allow the appeal and enhance the compensation for the appellant.

Also Read: Supreme Court Judgement: High Court’s Order Upheld in Case of [Respondent] v. [Petitioner]


  • High Court committed jurisdictional error by dismissing the appeal without appreciating the evidence or providing reasons.
  • There is no perversity or illegality in the award passed by the Motor Accident Claims Tribunal.
  • Doctor’s evidence proves the extent of permanent disability suffered by the minor victim.
  • Insurance Company’s liability was not questioned, so it does not need to be considered.
  • The appeal filed under Section 173 is similar to Section 96 of the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908.
  • The scope of appellate powers under Section 173 of the Act was examined in the case of Uttar Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation vs Mamta & Ors., G. Saraswathi & Ors. vs Rathinammal & Ors. and Central Board of Trustees vs Indore Composite Pvt. Ltd.
  • Courts are required to assign reasons for reaching conclusions while passing orders or judgments.
  • The High Court should have considered the law laid down by the Supreme Court in the mentioned cases while deciding the appeal.
  • As the High Court failed to do so, the case needs to be examined based on the evidence presented by the appellant regarding the nature of injuries to the victim-minor son and the extent of disability suffered.
  • The main question in this appeal is whether the lower courts were justified in awarding Rs. 2,00,000/- to the appellant for the injuries sustained by her minor son.
  • Ratios considered for enhancing the compensation award for the victim
  • The victim’s age, extent of disability, medical treatment, mental pain and suffering, and loss caused
  • No evidence presented by the respondents to refute the need for increasing the compensation amount
  • The Tribunal’s award of Rs.2,00,000 deemed low and in need of enhancement

Also Read: Supreme Court Judgement: Settlement of Dispute after Lok Adalat Award


  • A lump sum amount of Rs10,00,000/- is awarded to the appellant, who is the mother of the victim.
  • The awarded amount is to be paid within 3 months.
  • The amount will assist in the care and upbringing of the son, as well as cover past and future treatment expenses.
  • The lump sum amount will carry 6% interest from the date of the High Court’s order.
  • Upon payment, Rs.2,00,000/- along with interest awarded by the Tribunal will be adjusted by the appellant.
  • Counsel fees of Rs.10,000/- is payable by the respondent to the appellant.
  • The appeal is allowed.

Also Read: Definition of ‘Employee’ Under Section 2(f) of the Act Case


Case Number: C.A. No.-005932-005932 / 2019

Click here to read/download original judgement

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