What Can I Claim

In order to make a successful accident claim, you need to be able to prove that you have been injured as the direct result of the actions of another person (or organisation), something that they either should not have done but have done or in fact that they were expected to do but have not done.

Proof is often the critical factor in personal injury compensation claims. It may be easy to prove that you are injured, but proving that another person (or organisation) is legally responsible for their actions and that they failed to fulfill that responsibility, is not always as straightforward as it may seem. Often, with no other evidence than the injury itself, both parties will dispute the other parties version of events and in the absence of witnesses the success of a claim can sometimes come down to one person's word against that of another.

There are three simple facts that need to be established in order to determine whether you have a valid claim for compensation or not, namely that:

  1. Someone had a legal responsibility for your welfare (this is called a 'duty of care')
  2. He or she had failed to meet said responsibility (they were 'negligent'); and
  3. You have suffered personal injury as a result

Duty of care
This can be defined as a legal responsibility placed on a person or an organisation to do everything reasonably practicable to protect others from harm. For example, a car driver owes a duty of care to other road users. An employer owes a duty of care to its staff. A retailer owes a duty of care to the people who visit its stores.

Duty of care is limited to behaviour that is considered reasonable. Individuals have to take some responsibility for their own personal safety and well being and are expected to be aware of potentially hazardous situations also.

It is the responsibility of the person making a claim to prove that the person who they feel is to blame for the accident owed a duty of care and that they have failed to fulfill that duty.

Evidence that can be used to prove negligence can include:

  • Witness statements
  • Maintenance records
  • Training records
  • Medical records
  • Employment records
  • Photographic and video evidence
  • Invoices, estimates and receipts
  • Police reports
Were you injured in an accident?
Even if you can prove that a person or organisation owed a legal duty of care towards you and that they have been negligent in fulfilling that duty, to make a successful accident claim you have to have suffered an actual ‘loss’ as a consequence of their actions. A loss in legal terms includes a personal injury, damage to your possessions, or a financial loss.

Despite some ‘near-miss’ accidents being a traumatic experience, you are not entitled to claim compensation in the UK for an accident or loss, that nearly happened.

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 09 August 2011 @ 20:55

Personal injury claims rise in Staffordshire schools

Almost 58,000 in compensation was paid out to Staffordshire schoolchildren for personal injury claims in the last financial year.

There were 11 cases, ranging from trips and slips, to a girl who hurt her arm while putting away a trampoline.

The largest payout was over 10,000 to a pupil who slipped and fell on some logs.

The information was published by Staffordshire County Council after a Freedom of Information (FoI) request.

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