Why should you consult a personal injury solicitor if you have a claim?
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Accidents that result in serious injury can be devastating, however there can be substantial compensation available if it wasn't your fault.
If you’ve had an accident at work, been injured as a result of clinical negligence or been involved in a traffic accident, you may have a claim to be compensated. Fortunately, experts such as Thompson Smith and Puxon Solicitors have a full team that can aid with personal injury and clinical negligence claims, from relatively minor to life-changing cases.
We chat to Steve Webb, director and head of the PICN team at Thompson Smith and Puxon in Colchester, who details the benefits of seeking legal advice for personal injury claims.
Q: What typically constitutes a personal injury or clinical negligence claim?
A: These cases can be quite varied and, especially in regards to medical negligence, complicated legal matters. For a personal injury claim to succeed, it must be proven that serious injury was the fault of someone else or a result of a breach of duty. Cases range from injuries at work to road traffic accidents to defective products.
Clinical negligence often covers incorrect or delayed diagnoses, mistakes made during a medical procedure and birth injury or complications. Our expertise mainly lies in helping the sufferers of catastrophic and life-changing accidents to receive substantial compensation, often for their current and continued care.
Q: Can you outline the process for clients seeking compensation?
A: When a client initially contacts us, we will offer a free initial interview and case assessment. We can then offer to fund the claim through a conditional fee agreement, otherwise known as a no win no fee agreement within the industry. This removes the risk of significant legal fees from the client should a case not succeed.
A fairly large proportion of cases are resolved by negotiation, either with insurers for road traffic or workplace accidents, or hospital trusts in the case of clinical negligence. Claims resolved through negotiation do not need to be taken further, into the court system.
Q: How long does it usually take to receive compensation?
A: It quite often depends on the severity of the initial injury and which category it falls into. The more minor personal injury claims, dealt with via the Ministry of Justice portal, are usually resolved within three to nine months. This is a relatively swift timeframe, and only applies to personal injury cases up to £25,000.
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Cases of clinical negligence do tend to take longer, sometimes due to the fact that the prognosis for the victim is not always clear. Assembling all of the evidence and properly assessing the value of the claim can take several years.
Q: What are the advantages of consulting solicitors such as Thompson Smith and Puxon?
A: In a word, expertise. The court process is complicated and there are a lot of pitfalls for the layperson. It is very easy to miss deadlines, and often the financial costs accrued can be extremely heavy. This is just one aspect where a personal injury claims solicitor has traditionally been able to assist, as well as taking care of the legal paperwork and resulting court proceedings.
This removes a huge amount of pressure from the shoulders of our clients, enabling them to rest and recover whilst we take on the brunt of the complex legal proceedings.
If you have a personal injury or clinical negligence claim or would like to learn more, visit tsplegal.com or call the Colchester office on 01206 574431.