10 things you need to know before making a personal injury claim

making a personal injury claim

Before making a personal injury claim, it’s prudent to be aware of several key points that will help you navigate the process effectively. Here are what we think are the most important ten things you should consider:

1. Time limits

People don’t often consider this, but there’s a time limit within which you must file your claim.  It’s usually about three years from the date of the accident or injury. This is known as the statute of limitations.  There are exceptions and some claims are even subject to shorter time limits, so this is just one of the reasons it’s good to have a personal injury specialist solicitor on side to help you work within time constraints.

2. Evidence gathering

Collecting and preserving evidence related to your injury is so important when making a personal injury claim. This can be both written and photographic or in video form. Things like medical records, witness statements, photographs of the accident scene, and any relevant documentation will all be required for your solicitor to build your case.  Often keeping a diary can help with this process.

It’s also really useful if you ensure you record all the important details of the accident.  Doing this as quickly as you can is recommended, since the details will be fresher in your mind.  Also keep copies of how and where your accident was reported plus cost receipts and details of expenses and losses.  Your solicitor will need all these details to help you build your case.

3. Legal representation

The legal process can be a minefield for those not familiar with it, so you should always consider seeking legal advice from a solicitor specialising in these kinds of claims. They can provide guidance on the strength of your case and help you navigate the legal process.

4. Types of compensation

Yes, there are different kinds!  It’s useful for you to understand the types of compensation you may be entitled to.  Again this is where the support of a specialist solicitor is invaluable when making a personal injury claim.  A good legal representative will look at including damages for pain and suffering, medical expenses, lost earnings, and future care needs.

5. Liability

It needs to be determined who is liable for your injury. This could be another individual, a business, or an organisation. Establishing liability is crucial for a successful claim.  It is often not necessarily clear who is legally responsible for an accident. Sometimes you may even think that you are at fault. Or you might think that it was ‘just an accident’ that caused your injury.  But even if you are partly to blame, and someone else is also partly to blame, you may still be able to make a claim.  This is where your solicitor’s knowledge and experience really comes into play.  Be aware though that Be aware that if you were partially at fault for the accident or injury, your compensation may be reduced under the principle of contributory negligence.

6. Insurance

You need to check if the party responsible for your injury has insurance. In many cases, compensation is paid out by the insurance companies rather than individuals or businesses directly.

7. Out of court settlements

In some cases, a settlement can be reached out of court through negotiation. Consider the pros and cons of settling versus pursuing litigation, and your Solicitor will be really well positioned to advise you on this.

8. Legal Costs

Understand the potential costs involved in pursuing a personal injury claim, including legal fees and court expenses. In some cases, you may be able to claim these costs back if your case is successful. Many solicitors are also to work on a no-win-no-fee basis to support you on this, so it’s important to discuss with them how this works and what the costs would ultimately be at point of pay out.

9. Injuries covered

Know which types of injuries are typically covered by personal injury claims, ranging from minor injuries to more severe ones resulting in long-term disability. Always ensure your choice of solicitor has experience in that area, and they should be happy to share with you reviews, case studies and testimonials to assure you.

10. Get the right compensation

By familiarising yourself with these key aspects of personal injury claims in the UK, you’ll be better equipped to navigate the process and pursue fair compensation for your injuries, and it will help you make the right choice of legal representative.  You are of course though, welcome to contact us at any point to discuss your options in more detail.