High value personal injury claims
Six figure settlement for the widow of a man in his 40s who died in a farming accident at work
How to make a civil claim for sexual abuse
Jurisdictional Gateways in Personal Injury claims
Medical Negligence and Personal Injury claims: Limitation period
We have expertise in all types of personal injury claims including road traffic accidents, school and workplace injuries, accidents abroad, and military claims.
An accident can have a devastating effect, not only on the injured person, but also on those close to them; sometimes changing lives forever. We know how daunting it can be to suddenly have to deal with hospitals, the police, insurance companies, or the courts. We can help you to manage this and support you through the process of bringing a claim to obtain much needed compensation.
Over the years we have acted for adults and children in personal injury cases involving many serious and complex injuries including:
- Brain Injury;
- Spinal Injury;
- Orthopaedic Injuries – e.g. broken legs and arms;
- Polytrauma/multiple injuries;
- Psychiatric Injury including reactive depression and post-traumatic stress disorder;
- Trauma from sexual abuse.
We frequently achieve multi-million pound settlements for catastrophically injured people. For further information about compensation we have secured for clients who have suffered personal injury, see personal injury cases we have acted in.
Road Traffic Accidents
We regularly act for people who have suffered serious injuries in road traffic accidents. Investigation of the claim often involves working with the police, accident reconstruction specialists and medical experts to understand how the accident occurred and the effects on the injured person.
We are able to deal robustly with issues that may arise regarding motor insurance (including uninsured drivers) and allegations that the injured person contributed to their own injury. This is referred to as 'contributory negligence' and, for example, may include not wearing a seatbelt.
Accidents at work, school or on organised trips
Our clients include people injured in the workplace, at school, or in some other place outside the home. We are experienced in bringing claims regarding unsafe premises and working practices, including where there has been an inadequate risk assessment.
We also act for clients who have been injured during organised trips, including trips abroad. As such, we are able to deal with the additional complications of an accident that occurred outside of the UK.
We represent Armed Forces personnel in bringing personal injury and human rights claims against the Ministry of Defence (‘MoD’).
Often, military personnel are given the impression that they are not allowed to bring a claim against the MoD. This is not correct and claims can be brought in respect of injuries sustained during a training exercise and whilst on active duty. We act for Armed Forces personnel who have been unnecessarily exposed to dangerous / unsafe working practices and suffered injury as a result. This has included toxic exposure during military service.
We also have experience in bringing Human Rights Act 1998 claims against the MoD. See our Human Rights page for more detail of Kingsley Napley’s experience in human rights law.
Sexual abuse claims
Our experienced team frequently represents clients in claims related to sexual abuse. We are also able to assist with any related criminal proceedings, if that is an issue in your case.
For further information, see our Compensation for Sexual Abuse Claims page.
Claiming Compensation for Personal Injury
If you or a member of your family has been injured as a result of negligence, funds can be claimed to put in place an individualised package of care and support.
We work with experienced experts in rehabilitation, care, specialist equipment, adapted accommodation and various therapies, to enable the compensation to meet your needs.
Clients with life changing injuries may never return to work. When bringing your claim, we will include your loss of earnings and lost pension contributions.
If you were self-employed before the accident, we are able to value and assess your commercial losses, and build those into the claim for compensation.
Our aim is to provide you with financial security for the future.
We are committed to helping our clients access high quality rehabilitation at the earliest opportunity and are signatories to the Serious Injury Guide. The Guide applies to high value claims and encourages Defendants to agree to early access to rehabilitation (to maximise the chances of recovery), as well as encouraging early resolution of claims. Many Insurers are also signatories to this Guide.
PERSONAL INJURY FAQS
Are there time limits for bringing a personal injury claim?
There are strict time limits for bringing a personal injury claim in England and Wales. This is called the limitation period.
For adults, the usual rule is that a claim must be formally started at Court within three years of the date the negligence occurred, or the date on which the injured person became aware that there might be grounds to bring a claim (if that date is later).
If a child is injured by negligence, they usually have until their 21st birthday to formally start their claim at Court.
There are circumstances in which the rules differ; for example, where the claim is for someone who does not have mental capacity to bring a legal claim.
The Courts also have the discretion to extend this time limit in certain circumstances. For example, this might occur in sexual abuse cases where someone has taken a long time to bring a claim.
Other types of claims have different deadlines. For example, claims under the Human Rights Act 1998 should usually be brought within one year of the date of breach of human right(s) or date of knowledge.
It takes time to investigate a claim, so you should contact our solicitors as soon as possible.
Can I bring a claim on behalf of a child or a family member who is not able to do it themselves?
If a claim relates to injuries suffered by a child or an adult who does not have ‘mental capacity’; a family member (or other trusted person) can act as a ‘Litigation Friend’ and bring the claim on their behalf.
If you are unsure about whether you can bring a claim on someone else’s behalf, we will be able to advise you.
What is the process for bringing a claim?
We start by obtaining evidence such as collision reports, CCTV, risk assessments, material prepared by the police or CPS, witness statements and expert evidence. This is used to prove that the accident was caused by negligence. If the cause of the accident is not clear, we may instruct an accident reconstruction expert to analyse the evidence and visit the accident scene or workplace.
We also calculate the amount of compensation that can be claimed. We often instruct experienced experts (for example in rehabilitative care) to maximise your level of compensation. We then try to reach a financial settlement with the Defendant (the individual or organisation legally responsible for your injury) or their insurer.
In some cases settlement is agreed at an early stage. In other circumstances, it may be necessary to begin Court proceedings.
For further information on this process, read our Guide to Making a Claim.
Will my case be decided by the Court?
Probably not. The vast majority of personal injury claims are not decided by the Court.
Successful claims are usually resolved by settlement either before or during formal Court proceedings.
Occasionally, the Court will decide a case, if it cannot be resolved any other way.
How is the amount of compensation decided?
Compensation should be tailored to meet the needs of the injured person.
The first step is to consider how the injury has affected your life and whether that will change in the future. We then calculate the amount of funds required to meet your additional needs and compensate you. Depending upon the circumstances, this may include funds for:
- Private care
- Private therapies and medical treatment
- Specialist equipment and vehicles
- Adapted accommodation
- Support with education or work (if that is possible for you)
- Compensation for loss of earnings and pension
- Compensation for losses in self-employment
We regularly use leading experts and barristers to assist in identifying all aspects of an injured person’s needs.
I am struggling with the effects of my injury. Will it take a long time before my case is concluded?
Personal injury claims typically involve detailed investigation and expert evidence. They often take several years to resolve.
Our approach is to seek an admission of liability (i.e. confirmation that negligence occurred and caused injury) as early as possible in the process.
When liability is established, the Defendant usually has to make payment of part of the compensation immediately. This allows the injured person’s needs to begin to be met while the work to quantify the full amount of compensation continues.
Other organisations and resources that may help
- APIL (Association of Personal Injury Lawyers)
- Spinal Injuries Association
- Headway - The Brain Injury Association
- DEMAND (Design and Manufacture for Disability)
Our experienced team of solicitors is recognised by the legal directories Chambers UK and Legal 500.
Partner and Head of Department
Eurydice Cote (Français)
Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for all you’ve done. You made something so difficult so much easier than we could have ever expected”
Latest blogs & news
Proposed changes to the Highway Code: will they improve safety for cyclists and other vulnerable road users?
Over the summer, the government suggested changes to the Highway Code to improve road safety for vulnerable road users. If the proposals are approved, they will change how pedestrians, cyclists and motorists are expected to behave on Britain’s roads.
Brownlie v FS Cairo (Brownlie No.2)
The Court of Appeal has today handed down its judgment by a 2-1 majority has rejected the Defendant’s jurisdiction challenge in this case.
Sustaining a spinal injury is a life changing event. A variety of symptoms can present. For example, loss of limb function, sensory disturbance or loss of bowel and bladder function. This makes it essential that an individual who has suffered a spinal injury accesses specialist medical and rehabilitative treatment as soon as possible to achieve the best possible outcome.
Can being kind improve the delivery of medical assistance? I think it may well have an impact on the numbers of medical negligence claims brought against the NHS.
Lady Christine Brownlie (Claimant) v Four Seasons Holdings Incorporated (Defendant) and FS Cairo (Nile Plaza) LLC (Proposed Defendant)
As solicitors who represent seriously injured children and adults in clinical negligence claims, we are aware that, while Claimants need access to compensation, they may be worried by the prospect of a trial.
This might be a legal minefield, but it should not be an ethical one.
For many of those affected by crime, reporting the offence to the police or even securing the conviction of the perpetrator can fall short of remedying the damage sustained. It may be that the injury and trauma are so severe that additional funding is required for medical care, household adjustments, or even future therapy.
The final quarter of 2017 continued to be an active one within the field of medical negligence. Consultations and Parliamentary reports continued to flow. The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) produced a report on 1 December 2017 stating that the government was continuing to be complacent in relation to learning from mistakes from clinical negligence claims. There has been a quadruple increase in the cost of clinical negligence which PAC attribute to the failure to identify key re-occurring mistakes and learning from those mistakes. The committee advocated a shift from the current NHS "defensiveness" position to a learning from mistakes culture.
For those hoping for confirmation of what approach the judiciary is going to take now that JR is settled, sadly, this blog cannot provide that. However, this blog does take stock of the current situation, looks at how we got here and tries to offer some insight into where we might be going.
Medical experts are key to success in any medical negligence case. Given their ability to make or break a case, what is it that we look for in an expert?
On Sunday 17th September 2017, members of the Kingley Napley clinical negligence team participated in this years’ edition of the Going the Distance walk organised by the Spinal Injuries Association (SIA).
Spinal injuries are unpredictable and life changing. The location of the injury is key, and generally speaking the higher up the injury, the more severe the consequences. An injury is classified as complete or incomplete depending on whether strength or sensation is preserved below the level of injury.
The impact and consequences of an acquired brain injury (ABI) can reach far beyond the injured survivor. Relationships and family roles can be instantly and dramatically changed and no family unit can ever be truly prepared to deal with an ABI, especially when it occurs through someone else’s fault.
The spinal cord relays information from the brain to the rest of the body, and sends signals about the rest of the body to the brain. If the spinal cord is damaged, messages travelling from the brain to the rest of the body are disrupted and can result in a loss of sensation and movement from below the point of injury.
Bridget Hughes, Kirsty Allen, Suzanne Farg and I attended the Riding for the Disabled Charity’s National Championships last weekend, at Hartpury College. Kingsley Napley were one of the proud sponsors of the event and we went along with open minds and a sense of intrigue about what to expect.
Over the past few weeks our blogs have looked at spinal and back anatomy and the common causes of spinal cord injury. This blog looks at the types of spinal cord injury that can occur and provides a summary of the 6 clinical syndromes all of which present in a slightly different way.
Through the implementation of better health and safety standards in sport, there has been a decrease in the number of spinal cord injuries sustained during sports such as American football, rugby, motor sports and equestrianism.
Road traffic accidents are the second largest cause of spinal cord injury in the UK. Many of you reading this blog may be a victim of spinal cord injury or know somebody who has sustained a spinal injury as a result of a road traffic accident. Kingsley Napley have acted for many clients who have sustained spinal cord injuries as a result of road traffic accidents. Part of our job is to represent the interests of our clients and to help them obtain compensation for the injuries they have sustained. However, more importantly our job is also to ensure that our clients are receiving the treatment and rehabilitation that they need to make as full a recovery as possible to enable them to lead an independent life.