You are legally protected under the law in the United Kingdom to claim compensation if you experience an accident through the negligence of a third party and suffer financially, physically or mentally. The law recognizes your right to claim and protects your right to compensation. Claiming this compensation is not easy – unless you have the right legal expert by your side. It’s important to seek the best legal advice possible before you take any action – and it’s important to use the services of a legal expert who will not charge you anything if you do not win your compensation. Accidents can and do happen anywhere and compensation can be claimed in the following circumstances: –
accidents at your workplace or involving work
accidents on the roads or involving vehicles and the highways
slipping or tripping in public places or in private areas
medical accidents or negligence of medical professionals
What type of accidents do most UK personal injury claim solicitors deal with? The most common accidents in the UK concern car crashes, hit and run incidents, accidents at work, and trips, slips and falls. If you have been involved in any accident that is due to someone else’s negligence, within the last three years, you should obtain personal injury advice as soon as possible. If after talking a lawyer you chose not to take matters further then that is your right and you will not normally be charged for initial advice.
If you’ve been involved in an accident and have suffered physical damage as a result of another person’s negligence then a solicitor can help you claim damages for your pain, suffering and financial losses. For convenience, lawyers divide compensation into two distinct categories. Special damages represent compensation for losses are easily calculable including wages, expenses and damage to property. General damages represent compensation for losses that cannot be calculated accurately and must be at least partially assessed by a judge including pain and suffering, loss of opportunity in life, and obstruction to a normal lifestyle.
The first thing that most personal injury claim solicitors do is to assess the value of your claim, working out the potential general and special damages. To help your solicitor to accurately calculate these sums you should ensure that you offer as much information and evidence that you can. The defendant might decide to accept liability, which will result in an easy settlement, but if there is a denial of liability an application for a determination by a judge in a court of law will be necessary.
Drivers have a duty to act reasonably on the roads, employers have a duty of care to their employees, occupiers are responsible for the safety to their visitors and public bodies have a duty of care to the people who use their services or visit their domains. This means that if you have been injured in an accident that was not your fault and was due to another party having failed to properly address their duty of care to you then you should protect your legal rights by instructing a personal injury claim solicitor to recover the compensation due to you.
Judges dealing with personal injury compensation claims in the civil courts have two main duties which involve answering the question of who is to blame for an accident and if appropriate how much compensation should to be awarded. The judge has can use his discretion when deciding who is at fault and apportion liability – either one side entirely or perhaps a mixture of both sides.
It’s a tough job being a Judge deciding how much to award in personal injury compensation claims. No monetary award can ever compensate properly for injury. If your car is damaged it’s a lot easier to know how much it costs to replace than to estimate and assess the value of a physical injury. The real solution to the problem of measuring damages lies in considering previous cases in which similar injuries occurred and how much was awarded in that case. These cases can act as vital guidelines for a Judge.
In attempting to deal with the problem of measuring compensation, the `Judicial Studies Board’ publish a book called `Guidelines to the Assessment of General Damages in Personal Injuries Cases’ which is often used as a starting point for anyone wanting to assess the likely damages relating to a specific injury. The publication called ‘Kemp & Kemp: The Quantum of Damages’ is used for consideration of previously decided cases and is available in most public libraries.