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In general, you can always instruct a personal injury solicitor to help you, but things get a bit more complicated when it comes to funding. If your accident was on or after 31st May 2021, and you suffered whiplash injuries whilst you were inside a vehicle (either as a driver or passenger), your claim will have to go through the Official Injury Claim portal. This process does not allow any legal fees to be recovered as part of your claim, effectively giving you the choice of going without legal support, or paying for it yourself. Unfortunately, because injury compensation awards are also lower within the Official Injury Claim process, paying for legal support yourself would almost certainly leave you worse-off financially. More on these reforms to whiplash claims can be found in our guide and FAQ. If the above does not apply to your situation, for example, if you suffered more serious injuries or you were injured whilst riding a bike or motorcycle, you can avoid the Official Injury Claim process and Truth Legal can likely offer to help you through a No Win, No Fee Agreement.    
Payment of compensation often depends on how long it takes for your personal injury claim to be concluded. Compensation is usually paid at the end of a claim. Sometimes, however, the party you are claiming from may agree to advance small amounts of compensation to you whilst your claim is ongoing. These are called interim payments.
If you have received a compensation offer to settle your claim, you are entitled to accept it if you wish. It is also possible to instruct your solicitors to make offers of settlement to try and bring a claim to a close. However, settling a claim is usually not recommended if you are still suffering from your injuries. It is important to ensure that any compensation offers take into account the full extent of your injuries and losses. This is because, once a personal injury claim has been settled, you cannot claim more compensation for that injury or its consequences at a later date. More information on this can be found in our blog post: ‘When should I settle my personal injury claim?’
Truth Legal does offer free initial consultation sessions. We understand that you may want to discuss your situation before deciding whether to make a personal injury claim. These consultation sessions provide you with this opportunity without any cost or obligation to proceed further. If you would like to book a free initial consultation, please contact us.
Many prospective claimants want to know the time it will take to conclude a personal injury claim. Unfortunately, it is difficult to give a meaningful idea. Many things can affect a case’s duration: such as recovery times, the time needed to gather the required evidence, and how quickly other parties respond. A personal injury claim can take anywhere from several months to several years – although cases at the upper end of this are normally those involving very severe injuries.
If you have lost your personal injury claim, you will not receive any compensation for your injuries, or for any other losses you may have incurred due to the accident. Personal injury claims can fail for a variety of different reasons. However, if your claim failed because of something your solicitor did or did not do – to the extent that their conduct fell below required professional standards – you may be able to bring a professional negligence claim against them.
Only a very small proportion of personal injury claims ever go to trial. Even when court proceedings begin in a claim, it does not mean that the case will automatically go to a court hearing. By Truth Legal’s estimates, only about 1% of our personal injury cases are concluded with a trial.
You can represent yourself in a personal injury claim – there is no legal requirement to instruct a solicitor. Following the changes to road traffic accident claims on 31st May 2021, you may have to represent yourself if you suffered a whiplash injury as a car driver or passenger. More information on these changes can be found in our whiplash reforms guide. However, there are many challenges to acting without legal support. A personal injury claim is a lot to take on by yourself, especially if you are still suffering from your injuries. The party you are claiming from may also try to take advantage of your situation. For example, an insurance company, with its huge financial resources, could work to prolong your claim, in the hope that you will settle too soon or abandon your claim altogether.
Even if you have already started a personal injury claim with a law firm, you are completely within your rights to switch your claim to a different firm of solicitors. It is your choice who you instruct to handle your personal injury claim, and if you are not receiving the service and legal support you deserve, you should seriously consider changing your lawyers to a better firm.
The most important thing, when you have slipped and fallen at work, is to focus on your well-being. Consider your injuries, ask for help or first aid if needed, and ask a colleague to call an ambulance if you have suffered more serious injuries. Any kind of personal injury claim should only ever be a secondary consideration.
There are legal time limits on all personal injury claims. If you miss the deadline, you may be unable to make your personal injury claim. In England and Wales, you must usually settle your claim within three years of the date on which you sustained your injury. Alternatively, you can start court proceedings within this time limit to protect your right to claim. There are some exceptions to these rules, so you should always discuss this with a specialist personal injury solicitor when considering a claim.
A personal injury claim is a form of legal action in which you seek compensation for injuries (and other kinds of harm) you have suffered in an accident. Personal injury claims are made against the people you believe to be legally responsible for your injuries. However, they will often be paid and ‘defended’ by any insurance companies involved.
Only a very small proportion of medical negligence claims ever go to trial. Cases can be settled right up until a hearing takes place, even after formal court proceedings have been started. NHS Resolution (the organisation which defends the vast majority of claims against the NHS) states that less than 1% of the medical negligence claims it deals with go to a court hearing.
Many different pieces of information are used to value an injury claim; the nature of your injury, what it has stopped you from doing, the duration of your symptoms, and many more factors will all play a part. You should be very wary of ‘valuations’ from compensation calculators, as they will not take any of your individual circumstances in to consideration. For more information on how injuries are valued accurately, have a look at our free ebook: ‘The Ultimate Personal Injury Compensation Guide’.
Unnecessary surgery is often a clear example of medical negligence. Surgery can cause a lot of pain, distress and disruption to someone’s life. If a medical mistake by your doctors has caused you to undergo surgery which was not required, or corrective surgery to fix a surgical error, you may have strong grounds for a medical negligence claim.
If a doctor has been negligent, it means that they have not met the standards of care which they legally owe towards their patient. Failure to meet these standards could take many forms, such as: misdiagnosing a patient, prescribing incorrect treatment, not properly investigating a patient’s symptoms, or giving a patient insufficient information to allow them to make informed decisions about their care.
You may come across the term ‘medical malpractice’ when searching online. It often appears in US law, but does not have any special significance in the UK. In the UK, the terms medical negligence or clinical negligence are used instead (and these are completely interchangeable – i.e. they refer to the same thing).
Every compensation claim has its own challenges; what may be disputed in one case, could be quickly admitted in another. However, medical negligence claims frequently involve complicated medical issues, meaning there is often a greater need for detailed evidence, especially when compared to more ‘straightforward’ causes of personal injury, such as road traffic accidents. This makes skilful and experienced legal support even more crucial. Instructing a firm of solicitors who specialise in medical negligence claims is the best way to give your claim its highest chances of success.
There are several elements to making a medical negligence claim successfully, and it is for you as the person making the claim (with your legal team) to prove these different elements. The two elements which are often central to medical negligence claims are: firstly, whether the medical practitioners involved failed to meet the standards required of them by law; and secondly, if there was a failure, whether this caused the injuries and harm for which you are claiming compensation. Evidence is crucial to proving these elements, and a claim will often rely heavily on reports written by impartial medical experts.
We usually think of negligence as carelessness, but in legal terms the meaning is more specific. Someone is legally negligent if their conduct is below a ‘standard of care’ which is required of them, by law, in certain circumstances. People have these ‘duties of care’ towards others in all kinds of situations – for example, doctors towards their patients, motorists towards other road-users, and employers towards their workers. If a person’s negligence causes harm to someone else, they could be legally responsible for ‘making good’ that harm – normally through paying compensation.
Medical negligence claims can encompass many different kinds of injury and harm. As such, if you have suffered harm through medical negligence, any ‘overall average payout figure’ would be a meaningless number to you. This is because the value of the harm you have suffered depends on your circumstances – i.e. the extent of your injury and how much it has affected your life. An overall average gives you no indication where your own injury valuation would be in relation to it.
You are always entitled to change your solicitor when making a claim, even if your medical negligence claim is already ongoing. Medical negligence claims are a highly specialised area of law, so it is important you have got the right solicitors working for you. If you are not convinced that your current solicitors are providing you with the best legal support, you should seriously consider switching your solicitors to a better firm.
The general rule, in England and Wales, is that you must settle your medical negligence claim, or begin court proceedings, within three years of the date on which you suffered the harm. The general rule doesn’t always apply, however. For example, if you only discover the harm you have suffered some time after it was actually caused, the time limit will instead start to run from the date you became aware of the harm. Legal time limits on claims can be complicated, so you should always discuss this with a specialist medical negligence solicitor when considering a claim.
It is very difficult to predict how long a medical negligence claim might take. Many things can affect the length of a medical negligence claim, including: how long you take to recover from your injuries; how long it takes to gather the required evidence, and how quickly other parties respond. Medical negligence claims are often more complicated than other kinds of personal injury claim, and case duration can be anywhere from several months up to several years for more serious cases.
Medical negligence – sometimes called clinical negligence – is a situation in which a medical professional or institution has failed in their duty to take care of you and you have suffered injury and/or harm as a result. Examples include medical mistakes such as: surgical errors, misdiagnosis, and substandard emergency care. If you are the victim of medical negligence, you may be able to make a medical negligence claim for compensation against those responsible.
Cosmetic surgeons, like any medical professional, have legal duties to take care of their patients’ welfare. If their conduct has fallen below required professional standards, you may be able to sue them for the harm they have caused you. This can cover a wide range of situations, from botched cosmetic procedures to failures when discussing the risks of a procedure with you. However, being unhappy with the results of a cosmetic procedure does not necessarily mean you can sue. There must be a professional failing on your surgeon’s part to give grounds for a cosmetic surgery claim.
The first step to making any employment claim should be to obtain legal advice from a specialist employment law solicitor. Making a claim without good grounds to do so might mean being ordered to pay the legal costs of the party you are claiming from. Even if you have a strong case, your claim may be unsuccessful if it is not handled correctly.
Three months is the standard time limit to begin an Employment Tribunal claim. This time limit starts running from the date of the act which you are disputing, so for an unfair dismissal claim, it would be the date on which your employment ended; for a discrimination claim, it would be the date the discrimination occurred. You must notify ACAS of your intention to claim, within the 3-month time limit, to be allowed to make your claim. The time spent in ACAS Early Conciliation will be added to the time limit. The time limits are strictly applied. Speak to one of our specialist employment solicitors if you would like advice on your circumstances.
You are always entitled to choose the solicitors who represent you in your case, even if it is currently ongoing. If you do not feel like you are receiving the right levels of service or employment law expertise from your current solicitors, you should consider switching your case to a better firm.
You should always make your own choice when it comes to instructing employment solicitors. Firstly, you should only consider firms who specialise in employment law. Other types of lawyer won’t have the required knowledge and experience to do the best job possible in your case. Then you should consider the reputation of the firm and individual solicitors, as well as any client reviews, and accreditations they may have. If your case has been allocated to a firm of solicitors, perhaps by your union or insurance company, you may want to switch solicitors to a firm you believe to be more suitable for you.
Good employment lawyers are specialists in their field, with a great deal of experience in handling employment law matters. Crucially, however, a good employment lawyer should be able to give your case the attention it deserves. At Truth Legal, we have expert employment solicitors who recognise the importance of first-class legal service.
It can be difficult to predict the overall time an Employment Tribunal claim will take. The ACAS Early Conciliation process, required at the start of all prospective Tribunal claims, takes one month, but can be extended by up to 14 days. After this, the Employment Tribunal process can begin and your employer will have a period of 28 days to respond to your claim. Beyond that, timing will depend on many things, such as agreed timetables, the complexity of your case and the number of other claims the tribunal is dealing with.
The Employment Tribunal deals exclusively with employment law matters and is separate from the main civil and criminal court systems. It has its own procedures and paperwork. In our podcast on the Employment Tribunal process, barrister Kevin McNerney explains these procedures and how employment disputes are resolved by the Tribunal.
Unless you are being bullied due to a characteristic protected by discrimination laws (such as sex, race, disability, sexual orientation, pregnancy and age), you will not have a freestanding claim for bullying. However, your employer might have a procedure specifically to deal with bullying which you should follow. If not, you should raise a grievance. If you resign as a result of your treatment, you may have a claim for constructive unfair dismissal depending on the circumstances. You should seek advice from a specialist employment solicitor if you are in this situation.
If you feel like you are being discriminated against at work, you should try to discuss it with the person in question. This can be difficult, but it may be enough to stop the discriminatory behaviour – and resolve the problem in the most straightforward way possible. If the discrimination continues, you should record instances when it occurs, keep evidence if possible and raise a grievance. You should also seek legal advice about your situation. All of this can help you to prepare for bringing a discrimination claim through the Employment Tribunal, if you decide to do so.
Discrimination law can be very complex and includes direct discrimination, indirect discrimination, harassment and victimisation. For disability, there are also other types of discrimination such as a failure to make reasonable adjustments or unfavourable treatment.
Emotional distress might refer to all kinds of symptoms, from work-related anxiety and stress, to depression and other serious psychological conditions. You can only sue your employer for emotional distress if it takes the form of a recognised, and diagnosed, psychological condition. Your employer must also have failed, in some way, to meet their legal duties to protect your well-being. This type of claim would need to be brought in a court rather than an employment tribunal unless it was being brought as part of a claim for discrimination.
Both the basic award and the compensatory award for unfair dismissal have a maximum limit. Currently (6th April 2020 – 5th April 2021), these limits are: £16,140 for the basic award and £88,519, or a year’s gross pay (whatever is the lowest) for the compensatory award. However, if you have been unfairly dismissal on certain grounds, such as whistleblowing, there is no maximum limit to the compensatory award but it will still be based on your net loss of earnings. The aim is to compensate you rather than punish your employer.
If you are successful with your claim, your compensation will vary based on your circumstances. The two distinct awards which make up unfair dismissal compensation – the basic award and the compensatory award – are both calculated with reference to your situation. The basic award takes into account your age, length of service and gross weekly pay (which, for dismissals after 5 April 2020 is limited to £538 per week) and is calculated the same way as a statutory redundancy payment. The compensatory award is based on what would be just and reasonable in your case, taking into account your net loss of earnings and benefits and any earnings from new employment.
Generally speaking, an employee’s dismissal is unfair when it has been done for reasons which cannot be justified by their employer. Some reasons can never be justified and are ‘automatically unfair’ and it doesn’t matter for how long you have been employed. These include dismissing an employee due to pregnancy or maternity leave, health and safety reasons, for union activities or for whistleblowing. Ordinarily, however, you must have worked in your job for at least two years to be protected from unfair dismissal. The conditions for unfair dismissal can be complicated. Our detailed legal guide on unfair dismissal contains a lot more information on what does and does not constitute unfair dismissal.
The usual rule is that each party is responsible for their own costs, whatever the outcome. However, there are some circumstances in which an Employment Tribunal may order you to pay costs. These include situations in which you have acted unreasonably in the proceedings, you have not followed orders made by the Tribunal, or you brought a claim which had no reasonable chances of success. If you are worried about the possibility of paying costs, you should seek advice from a specialist employment law solicitor. The same applies if you win your case – your employer is unlikely to be ordered to pay your legal costs unless they have acted unreasonably.
No – you can choose to go through the whole Employment Tribunal process without legal representation if you wish. If so, you may like to browse our free legal library, which has many helpful example documents relating to Employment Tribunal claims. If you later decide you need more legal support, you can contact us to instruct us in your case, or arrange more involved legal advice. However, you should bear in mind that in legal proceedings, it is always better to ensure you get something right first time rather than trying to fix a mistake which has already been made.
Legal aid is not available for employment law matters. However, we are happy to discuss with you other means of potentially funding your claim subject to the strength and value of the claim. The legal costs of your claim may be covered by legal expenses insurance if you took this out as part of a household insurance policy. It is always advisable to check your policy or call your insurer if you are not sure. If you are insured, you can still choose your own solicitor. If you do not have legal expenses insurance, we may be able to offer you a ‘No win, No fee’ agreement. Alternatively, we would be happy to discuss fixed fees arrangements and have also successfully secured crowdfunding for employment claims.
There are no tribunal fees to pay for beginning an Employment Tribunal claim. However, you may incur legal costs if you instruct a solicitor, depending on your individual circumstances. Further, if you are unsuccessful in your claim against your employer, there is a small chance you may have to pay their legal costs. This will be the decision of the Employment Tribunal. However, they will only order this in limited situations, such where you have acted unreasonably in the claim, or where you brought a claim which had no reasonable chances of success. If you are concerned about the costs of an Employment Tribunal claim, you should seek advice from a specialist employment law solicitor.

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