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FIRST STEPS IN A TYPICAL PERSONAL INJURY CLAIM

 

When we receive your initial claim form we will consider the details provided to validate your claim. Through the validation process we are able to decide whether from the initial information provided to us we think you have a potential claim.

 

After the validation stage we will work with you to get you the compensation you deserve. Our team try to make the whole claims process as easy as possible for you.

 

Initial Assessment

We will take your detailed instructions, give you our initial view on your prospects of success and provide you with a likely time scale. We will also try and estimate the likely costs of your claim and advise you on how you should fund it. We will also advise you of our terms and conditions of business and what steps should be taken.

 

Initial Action

We will confirm in writing what we discussed and agreed with you at the initial interview and complete the arrangements for funding your claim.

 

We will then commence initial enquiries on your behalf and contact your opponent and any other interested parties. We will send your opponents a Letter of claim setting out as much details of your claim as possible including why you feel they are at fault and what it is you are claiming from them.

 

Throughout your claim we will report any significant developments and advise you and, in particular, we will review the value of your claim and the prospects of your claim succeeding and advise you of any significant expenditure. We will also monitor the costs that have been incurred and which we estimate will be incurred.

 

If liability, blame for the injury, is not formally admitted, we will interview all relevant witnesses and prepare evidence to support you case and prepare the necessary evidence to prove your claim.

 

Rehabilitation

We will consider and discuss with you whether you need any rehabilitation or treatment to assist you in your recovery (and return to work), and it may be necessary for us to consult your treating consultant, medical practitioner or a rehabilitation consultant. On occasion it is possible that your opponent's representatives, usually their insurers, will pay for a rehabilitation assessment and even for the treatment.

 

Negotiations

We will maintain regular contact with your opponent with a view to negotiating early settlement of your claim, where possible. If the circumstances of your accident are reasonably straightforward but your injury has yet to resolve or further evidence is awaited before your claim can be properly valued, it is possible to negotiate an early admission of liability. We will try to limit the issues in dispute in order to simplify the proceedings and to reduce costs and speed up your claim. Should an issue remain unresolved we will prepare the evidence to prove that issue and commence proceedings if necessary. We will however try to avoid formal proceedings if we can, by pursuing various alternative methods of achieving a negotiated settlement of your claim on terms that are fair and just to you.

 

Offers to settle made by your opponent

Once your opponents, or the Defendant Insurers, have completed their investigations and if liability is admitted and the extent of your injuries and losses are known, they are likely to make a formal offer of settlement. It is also possible to secure an admission of liability before your injuries have fully resolved or the extents of your losses are known. We will try to limit the number of issues in dispute where we can which may involve us entering into informal negotiations on your behalf. This will have important consequences on your right to recover your legal costs and we will advise you fully as and when such an offer is made.

 

Offers to settle by you

You can make a formal offer to settle to your opponent stating exactly what you will accept in compensation. You should be prepared to accept this if it is subsequently agreed. In doing this, you will increase your opponent's financial risk if this offer is declined and your claim proceeds to a hearing

 

Letter before action

Before proceedings are issues we will write to the opponent to warn then of our intention to commence proceedings. We will, where appropriate, renew any discussions in an attempt to settle your claim and try to avoid the need for proceedings where possible. If it is not possible we will try to agree neutral issues in order to simplify the matters in dispute.

 

Before Commencing Proceedings

We will undertake a thorough review of the evidence and advise you of your prospects of success; we will also advise you of the costs incurred to date, reassess the anticipated costs of your claim and inform you of the consequences to you of your claim failing. Should you lose, your potential liability for your opponent's costs only begins with the issue of proceedings and we will therefore obtain your permission before commencing proceedings. We will try and avoid court proceedings where we can.

 

Time Scales

It is important that most of our inquiries and preparations are undertaken prior to issuing proceedings because of the strict time limits imposed by the Courts once proceedings have commenced. This reduces the risk that part or all of your claim will be disallowed due to a failure to adhere to the automatic directions.

 

An important time limit

A three year time limit for commencing court proceeding for a personal injury claim is imposed by The Limitation Act 1980. This period runs from:

 

The date on which the cause of action accrued, that is the date of the accident orIf later, from the "date of knowledge" of the person injured.

 

Special considerations apply to persons who die from their injuries within the three year period and to children. Only in exceptional circumstances can a personal injury claim be brought outside the statutory time limit.

 

Generally

We need your full co-operation and complete instructions to progress your claim effectively. We need to see any documents or records that may be relevant to your case as soon as possible to enable us to decide what documents are relevant.



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