Claims for Accidents and Personal Injuries

What can I claim compensation for?

You can claim compensation (“damages”) for any personal injuries or financial losses which you can prove were the direct result of someone’s negligence. This includes compensation for:

  • Pain and suffering, including, for example, ongoing treatment and further operations.
  • If you can’t carry out hobbies or daily activities (called loss of amenity).
  • Loss of earnings.
  • Cost of nursing care, special equipment, medical care or help that you need to carry out daily activities.
  • Costs of adapting your home.
  • Psychological injury.
  • In certain circumstances, a claim under the Human Rights Act.

How will my claim be funded?

If you are on a low income, you may be able to get help with the legal costs through the Community Legal Service (CLS). You will have to show that you have a reasonable chance of winning your case and that the possible value of your claim is enough to justify the costs involved. From April 2013, only those who have been injured during pregnancy, labour or the first eight weeks of their life will be eligible for public funding.
If you are a member of a trade union or similar type of organisation, it may be able to help with legal costs.
You should check your insurance policies (especially your house insurance policy) to see if they include legal expenses cover for personal injury claims.
We offer no win no fee. This means that if your claim is unsuccessful, we guarantee that you will not have to pay any legal fees or expenses. If your claim is successful, you may have to pay some legal fees and expenses out of your compensation, but we guarantee that this will not exceed 25% of the compensation awarded to you excluding damages for future care and loss. Please read S. J. Edney’s Guide to Legal Costs.

These guarantees only apply if you pursue your claim with us for as long as it has reasonable prospects of success, follow our professional advice and do not deliberately mislead us.

We will discuss the funding of your case at our first appointment.

How much time do I have to claim compensation?

You must bring a claim for personal injury compensation within three years (called ‘the limitation period’). The limitation period starts either from:

  • When you had your accident/ treatment, or
  • When you first realised that you had suffered an injury (called your ‘date of knowledge’).

In the case of children, the three-year limit does not start until their 18th birthday. Also, if the case involves a person who cannot manage their own affairs because of a mental disability, the three-year limit does not apply.

The courts can, in extreme circumstances, allow your claim after the three-year limit.

If the case is about someone who dies because of someone’s negligence, you can claim:

  • “Bereavement damages” of £12,980.00 if your husband or wife, or your child if they were under 18, died on or after the 1 April 2013 (this figure has been increased from £11,800 where a death occurred on or after the 1 January 2008).
  • Loss of dependency if you were financially dependent on the person who dies, or
  • A claim on behalf of a deceased person’s estate.

When we first see you, we will probably only be able to give you a rough idea of how much compensation you might get.