Please find below a list of general and specific questions that you may have related to making a claim for compensation. We hope they provide the guidance you need. However, if you cannot find the answer you are looking for or need further clarification on any point, please don’t hesitate to contact us. Do so by either calling us on 0800 027 2557 or by completing our online contact form.
Why should I claim?
Following a serious accident or injury, the chances of a full recovery may be slim and some form of long-term disability may remain.. State provision, however, is often poor, and the support, equipment, and sometimes accommodation, needed are specialised and expensive. Compensation claims help people fund these necessities.
Do I have a claim?
Usually you have a claim if your accident or injury was caused totally, or in part, by the fault of another person. That other person may be a driver, your employer, your landlord, a professional such as a doctor or therapist, or someone you don’t even know. Sometimes, you do not have to establish fault, depending on the circumstances.
When should I claim?
Generally, adults have three years from the date of the accident or injury in which to bring a claim for compensation. The rules relating to adults who lack mental capacity or children are different because the three year limitation period does not start until their 18th birthday. Normally, the rules are strictly enforced by the courts, but there may be circumstances in which it is possible for a person to bring an action for an injury sustained more than three years ago or, if in childhood, after their 21st birthday. We will advise you whether this is possible for your individual case. It is important, however, to contact us as soon as possible after the accident so that witnesses can be contacted if needs be, and evidence preserved.
Can my child pursue a compensation claim?
People under the age of 18 are not entitled to bring a claim in their own right as they lack “legal capacity” to do so. Therefore, an adult is appointed to act on behalf of the child. The adult is usually a relative, but may be an adult willing to act, and is known throughout the case as the 'litigation friend'. The function of the litigation friend is to make decisions on behalf of the child and generally to act in the best interests of the child throughout the litigation process.
How will my claim progress?
Provided we think you have a reasonable claim, we will investigate liability for your accident or injury - i.e. who is to blame? When liability has been resolved, we will investigate the value of your claim. We do this by obtaining reports about you from experts in a variety of fields, such as medical, care, transport, accommodation and employment. The experts are independent and their reports are addressed to the Court.
How long will it take to settle my claim?
This often depends on you and your recovery, as each case is different. Wherever possible, we conclude compensation claims quickly, but sometimes - and particularly in relation to serious accidents - it is crucial to wait until the end of the recovery period. Unfortunately, some cases can take many years, but we will be able to give you an estimate of the length of time we envisage your case taking at the outset and update you as the process progresses.
How much will it cost me? How do I pay?
Our initial advice is always free and is often given at your home or at hospital, if this is preferable. If you have a reasonable claim, we will offer you a ‘No Win No Fee’ agreement. We will explain carefully what this means. We will also investigate other means of funding, such as legal expenses cover, which is sometimes available through household or car insurance policy or credit cards.
How much money will I receive?
The amount of money you receive depends upon the nature of your injuries and their consequences. The more serious and long-standing they are, the more you will receive. You will be awarded ‘general damages’ for your pain and suffering and the injury itself. The levels of these awards are set out in recognised guidelines used by solicitors and the courts. We will advise you about similar cases for your type of injury. You will also be awarded damages for past and future losses, such as medical expenses, loss of earnings, care, transport costs, rehabilitation, counselling, physiotherapy and other expenses related to your injury, known as ‘special damages’. We will advise you how to claim these.
Do I have to attend your offices?
If it is difficult for you to travel, we will visit you in hospital, your home or your place of work, if you so wish. We also keep in contact by telephone, post or e-mail.
Can I claim welfare benefits following an injury?
Welfare benefits are available for people who have been injured. Everybody’s circumstances are different, and your eligibility to claim welfare benefits can depend on the nature of your injury, the length of time you have been left impaired and your own personal financial circumstances. We have a specialist welfare benefits solicitor who can provide more information in this complex field.
Get in contact today
If you would like to speak to a member of our expert team about any other questions you have, or if you need clarity about any of the above points, get in touch today. Call us on 0800 027 2557 and we can discuss your personal situation. If you would prefer for us to contact you, complete our online enquiry form and we will be in touch.