The husband of a care assistant who suffered a heart attack just days after being assaulted at work has received compensation with the help of UNISON and Thompsons Solicitors.

The incident took place in 2011 when Susan Thickett was sat in her office at a residential home in south Wales. Without warning a resident attacked Susan, striking her in the back of the head.

Susan’s health rapidly deteriorated and she suffered from a fatal heart attack five days after the incident took place.

The resident who attacked Susan had a history of violent and aggressive behaviour but was not being monitored at the time of the incident. After the incident happened, the resident was transferred to a facility more suited to her needs.

Susan’s husband, Norman, contacted UNISON, his wife’s trade union after she passed away who put him in contact with serious injury specialists, Thompsons Solicitors, to investigate a compensation claim.

“The day Susan died was like a nightmare for me and my family,” said Norman.

“She had been working as a carer for years, so dealing with patients was second nature to her, but on the day of the attack she came home looking visibly anxious and unwell.

“Susan was about to retire and we were both looking forward to being able to spend more time with our two sons. This one incident, while she was doing the job she loved, means that we will never be able to see her again.

“I would urge anybody who suffers such a tragic loss to get in touch with Thompsons Solicitors, as they provided me and my family with fantastic, down to earth support that helped us to get through this horrible time.”

Michaela Jones, of Thompsons Solicitors in Cardiff, said: “On the day of Susan’s accident, there had already been multiple minor disturbances, but the management at the home did nothing to try to counter this effectively. The patient who attacked Susan had a history of violence, but it took the death of an experienced carer for them to realise that mistakes had been made.

“No amount of compensation will make up for the loss of a loved family member, but now Norman and his sons can try to rebuild their lives without her knowing that there has been recognition of the errors made.”