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ANSWERS TO FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQ)

 Can I bring a claim?

 

Not every accident entitles you to compensation, generally you must prove you're your injury occurred because someone else was at fault.

 

In order to decide whether you can claim compensation we must apply the relevant law to the circumstances of your accident which is often quite straightforward, as with road traffic accidents. On occasions it can be more complicated for example where you are suffering from an industrial illness or disease or where you have been injured as a result of medical malpractice.

 

If you have any doubts as to whether you are entitled to compensation please contact us and we will give you an initial opinion free of charge.

 

Is there a time limit for bringing a claim?

 

Usually you will have three years to bring a claim for compensation and, usually, if you fail to settle your claim or commence court proceedings within the three year limitation period the court is likely to prevent you from pursuing your claim. The three year period starts from:

 

  • · The date of your accident injury; or
  • If you did not at first realise that you were injured or that someone was legally responsible for your injury,
  • · From the date you knew, or ought reasonably to have known.
     

To ensure that you have the best change of making a claim you should contact us as soon as possible as delay in bringing a claim, once an illness or disease becomes apparent, may have an adverse effect.

 

What do I have to do to bring a claim?

 

Complete our short contact form and we will contact you.

 

How do I prepare for my first meeting?

 

You should have as much information as possible, for example, names and addresses of witnesses, any other person potentially involved in the claim and, in the case of road traffic accident, details of the driver of the other vehicle, its make model and registration number and details of the insurer if you have obtained this.

 

It is also useful if you take photographs or prepare a diagram of the accident scene and any damage to your vehicle, if you are the driver.

 

You should bring any documents that you think may be relevant but if you are in any doubt, please contact us and we will tell you what we need.

 

What if I was injured more than three years ago?

 

As stated above, the basic rule is that have only three years in which to bring a claim for compensation. However there are exceptions to this rule and the court has a discretion to allow you to bring your claim if you can show that it would be fair to do so. If this applies to you, please contact us so that we can advise you.

 

If you were injured as a child, the three year time limit does not commence until your 18th birthday.

 

Will I have to attend a court hearing?

 

Most claims settle without the need for court proceedings. Some cases however can only be settled by way of court proceedings and it is necessary to prepare each claim carefully as though it were to proceed to trial. We will however prepare all statements and proceedings on your behalf and ensure that you are represented at trial.

 

What if I am partly to blame?

This does not necessarily prevent you from claiming compensation. If your opponent or a court concludes that you were partly at fault, it will then decide to what extent it would be fair and equitable to reduce your entitlement so as to reflect your share of responsibility for the accident.

 

What are the risks?

Litigation is a risky affair and the final outcome of most claims cannot be predicted with any degree of certainty. There is always the risk that you could fail to establish your claim for compensation or that you may receive less damages than you envisaged.

 

Because of this Adam Solicitors always try to settle your case without going to court.

 

If we can agree to fight for your compensation on a No Win No Fee basis the risk to you is significantly reduced as you will only pay our fees in you win.

 

Because of recent changes in the law the risks to people claiming compensation have been reduced.

 

We will explain the above further to you on consultation.

 

What will it cost me?

We carry out most claims on a No Win No Fee basis if we consider that your claim has a reasonable prospect of success. If we feel that your claim should be carried out on this basis we will explain to you the terms and effects of a Conditional Fee Agreement and your responsibilities and obligations under this agreement.

 

Can I obtain a payment in advance before the case is over?

Yes provided that your opponent either has insurance or sufficient financial resources to make a payment. However before you can make an interim claim liability will usually have to have been admitted. There are other circumstances when you might be able to request an intrim payment which will be explained to you if applicable.

 

Payments are often negotiated from insurers on a voluntary basis before the start of any formal proceedings. The latter is quite usual where a payment is needed to fund private treatment or care and assistance needs and where certain losses are clearly established at an early date, for example  vehicle accident damage in a road accident claim.

 

What should I do following a road accident injury?

You should:

  • · Note the registration number of the other vehicle(s) involved and obtain the name, address and telephone number and insurance details (if known) of the other driver(s)
  • · If the police attended the accident, the name and number of the police officer.
    · It is always wise to report an accident to the Police irrespective of whether they attend.
  • · Get the names and address of any witnesses to the accident
  • · Make a note of the date, time and weather conditions at the time of the accident
     

You should report the accident to your own motor insurers as soon as possible as failure to do so may affect your insurance cover.

 

How long will my claim take?

Straightforward injury claims can be resolved within a few months. More complicated cases can last several years before reaching settlement. A lot depends on the circumstances of your case, the speed at which the other parties respond to our letters, the co-operation of your opponent or his representative and the time that it takes your injuries to resolve or stabilise. We will give you an indication of the likely time scales of your case during our initial free interview.

 

Does it matter if I contact an accident claims agency instead of a solicitor?

Many of these agencies undertake expensive advertising campaigns and refer enquiries made to them to a solicitor who is a member of their panel on payment of a fee. The high costs of advertising are often recouped by the agencies charging a high fee or premium to the solicitor.

 


We make every effort to ensure we are clear about our fees and the likely expenses involved from the outset. We are governed by strict rules of professional conduct enforced by the Legal Ombudsman Service and the Solicitors Regulation Authority.

 

What are general damages?

These are the monetary compensation agreed by your opponent, or awarded by a judge and are designed to compensate you for your injury, pain and suffering and any resulting physical or mental disability and restrictions these may impose on your way of life. General damages are assessed by comparing previous court awards in cases with facts similar to yours.

 

What are special damages?

These are compensation for losses and expenses that you have occurred as a result of your injuries up to the date of hearing, or settlement. They are actual losses or expenses that you have incurred as opposed to those that you estimate have been incurred or may be incur in the future.

 

Is there lots of paperwork involved?

No. Once you have given us most of the information that we need to pursue your claim we will contact you from time to time for further information or to advise you of progress but we aim to take the stress away from you.

 

Do I really deserve to be compensated for my injuries?

Many people are injured in accidents at work on the road or whilst they are out on a daily basis. In making a claim you are making the liable party aware of their carelessness or breach of duty. The compensation that you receive is for your losses including your pain, suffering. Health and Safety laws exist to protect you from injury and most people and institutions have insurance in place to indemnify them against your claim.

 

How much is my claim worth?

To obtain a general idea of how much your claim may be worth, see our compensation calculator.

 

 

Road Traffic Accident

You can claim compensation for a road traffic accident if the accident was not your fault, for example where a vehicle emerges into your path on the main road from a side street, collides with the rear of your vehicle or causes the accident as a result of failing to abide by a traffic signal.

 

Slips and Trips

You can claim compensation for a slip or trip accident where for example’ paving stones are in a bad state of repair causing you to trip over a raised paving stone or manhole, injuring yourself as a result or, for instance, a shop floor is wet and without warning signs and you have slipped and fallen injuring yourself as a result.

 

Accident at Work

Any accident at work which is caused by the negligence or oversight of your employer, such as being injured by a machine which is not fitted with safety guards or your employer fails to provide you with the necessary protective clothing or the correct equipment as a result of which you suffer injury.

 

Other personal injury claims

You may suffer injury as a result of a householder failing to ensure that his premises, which you are on legitimately, are safe. Most householders are insured and their insurance covers accidents occasioned as a result of negligence of the householder to persons visiting the home.

 

If you have suffered any type of injury as a result of an accident for which you were not liable, you should consult us as to whether you have any grounds on which to claim compensation.



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