Should the NHS be paying care and treatment costs?

Should the NHS be paying care and treatment costs, and how can you question a decision?

The way to argue the point is to request a review of the decision of the NHS body which has  declined care under the NHS. If no decision was ever made, and it looks like the NHS should have paid the cost then a review will sort out the question. Continue reading “Should the NHS be paying care and treatment costs?”

Liability is admitted

Liability is admitted – can I relax?

The defendant has admitted liability, or the insurance company for the Defendant has admitted liability.

Admitting liability is quite common in personal injury compensation case. The Claimant and their representatives relax as the fight is cancelled, and all that is necessary is to sort out the compensation.

What might surprise you is that an admission made before Court proceedings can be withdrawn. Court rules are in place to mange the position where the parties do not agree to the withdrawal of an admission of liability. A further surprise is that a Defendant withdrawing does not have to show that new evidence has been discovered. Continue reading “Liability is admitted”

Accident compensation claims repay NHS

The cost of motor insurance and the NHS factor

If you bring a successful compensation case after an accident which involves an insured vehicle the Government can reclaim the cost of NHS treatment from the insurer of that vehicle. You might be surprised to learn how much money is paid across to the NHS from our insurance premiums.

The insurance industry is running a campaign which targets the fees paid to claimant lawyers. This campaign has been shown to be untrue in the findings of the House of Commons Transport Committee. Fraud, young drivers, and referral fees paid within the insurance industry were some of the main factors which increased insurance premiums according to the Committee.

Something which was not raised by the Committee was the fact the Government wants its money back in the event of a road traffic accident, an accident at work, an accident resulting in a public liability claim, or product liability. The Government point is that money has been paid out due to an accident which is someone’s fault. That someone, or more accurately their insurance company, should pay back the Government’s money. We hear complaints about a claims culture, but our Government is already on the case and claiming back its own spend. Let us tell you more. Continue reading “Accident compensation claims repay NHS”

Rehabilitation after accident

Rehabilitation in personal injury compensation claims

Why and how rehabilitation can work for you

You will appreciate from other pages of this site that my aim is to achieve maximum compensation for my clients. I also try to gain the maximum benefit from the Rehabilitation Code.

Compensation is designed to put you back in the position you would have been had the accident not happened. Think of it as a glorified expenses claim, with a not very generous amount on top for the injury. Compensation does not make you better off, and it often takes time to complete a case. It is here that the Rehabilitation Code has an important part to play. Make sure you are getting the maximum benefit from rehabilitation paid for by the insurer of the party to blame for your accident. Continue reading “Rehabilitation after accident”

Health and safety and common sense

Carelessness and the lack of forethought cause accidents and poor medical treatment, not compensation.

Health and safety should be common sense

Our Government is very concerned about health and safety, as well as the compensation culture, claims management companies, and no win no fee advertising.

In a review published as “A report by Lord Young of Graffham to the Prime Minister following a Whitehall‑wide review of the operation of health and safety laws and the growth of the compensation culture” the only statistics shown told us major injuries at work are declining. The only graph in the report is at page 44.

The report is extraordinary in many ways. It is “a Whitehall-wide review” based more on perception than fact, and we would like to tell you more. Continue reading “Health and safety and common sense”

Compensation culture – do we have one?

Lord Young admitted that the “perception” of a growing compensation culture was not wholly supported by the facts, although the NHS Litigation Authority had seen a 10 per cent annual rise in claims during the last two years.

Compensation culture – have we got one?

Lord Young has been put in charge of reviews in of compensation and health and safety.

He has already answered my question in a report in the Financial Times on 15 October 2010:

Lord Young admitted that the “perception” of a growing compensation culture was not wholly supported by the facts, although the NHS Litigation Authority had seen a 10 per cent annual rise in claims during the last two years.

So there you go, the man in charge says the fear of a compensation culture is not supported by the facts. The fuss is created by tacky advertisements by solicitors and middle men, and by the difficulty that some organisations and events experience when trying to get insurance. Continue reading “Compensation culture – do we have one?”

Contributory negligence examples

The concept of contributory negligence is based on a claimant being partly responsible for the damage. The clearest example is a car driver who does not wear a seat belt. Not wearing the seat belt does not cause the accident, but it contributes to the damage – the injury.

Contributory negligence needs some explanation.

Contributory negligence is sometimes called partial fault, but this is confusing. The concept is based on a claimant being partly responsible for the damage. I am asked about 50:50 offers to settle personal injury cases. They are usually just compromise offers which have no real basis in law.

seat belt and contributory negligence

A good example to start with is a car driver or passenger who does not wear a seat belt. Not wearing the seat belt does not cause the accident, but it contributes to the damage (the injury in this example).  Another example is where an employee has failed to wear safety equipment. An accident occurs for other reasons, but the failure to wear safety equipment contributes to the injury, not the accident. If this claim is upheld by the court, the employer can suggest that any damages awarded to the complainant should be reduced by an amount that represents the portion of the blame assumed by the employee. If a claimant is found to have contributed by 20 per cent, that same 20 per cent will be deducted from the compensation received. Continue reading “Contributory negligence examples”

Expert evidence

Expert evidence in compensation cases

Only experts can give opinion in a compensation case, and the opinion must be limited to the field of expertise.

A medical expert is the usual expert, but again the medical expert must keep to their own area of expertise. Accident compensation cases sometimes need the help of an accident reconstruction expert, an engineer, an occupational or employment expert, or an accountant. Wherever the Court needs expertise to assist in coming to a decision you will be allowed to instruct an expert. The Courts can be restrictive, and have the power to limit the evidence to the evidence necessary to prove the case. The lower the value of the likely compensation, the less likely you are to be able to rely on experts. Continue reading “Expert evidence”

Mitigation

Mitigation means keeping your losses to a minimum, reasonableness being the guiding factor.

Mitigation means keeping your losses after an accident or injury to a minimum. Reasonableness is the guiding principle.

When you claim compensation after an accident you have a duty to mitigate, or keep your losses to a reasonable minimum. Your response to the problems created by the accident must be reasonable. This applies to your ability to work, or having a damaged item repaired reasonably quickly to avoid a reduction in its value. Continue reading “Mitigation”

Claim for self employed

Self employed – accident compensation

I often act for self employed people. Running my own business gives me an understanding of the self employed, and the particular pressures and issues cases for compensation by the self employed involve. Someone on a salary may not be too concerned by a period off work, but for the self employed this can mean immediate loss of cash flow, and a drop in profit at the year end. Continue reading “Claim for self employed”

Politics of compensation

Politics of compensation

Newspaper headlines tell you of large compensation awards, fraudulent claims, or the rising cost of road accident claims to insurers. What you do not read is how organisations are reimbursed as a result of a compensation case being brought.

After a road accident the Government can recover up to £505  for accident and emergency treatment, and £620 per day  for inpatient treatment. The maximum recoverable is £37,100. An additional payment for ambulance call out is £159.   The money is only paid if the person treated by the NHS makes a successful claim. The payment is made by the insurance company of the party responsible for the accident or injury. Continue reading “Politics of compensation”

Compensation – good thing?

Compensation – good or bad thing?

The need to seek compensation must be a bad thing, but the ability to recover it must be a good thing.

Nobody wants to be injured so nobody wants compensation. If something does go wrong then compensation can help put things right, but only financially. Continue reading “Compensation – good thing?”