The protection and safety of every citizen is the responsibility of the State. Accordingly, the state formulates various laws to protect its citizens from misfortunes and adversities. Personal injury law in the UK is one such law aimed at the safety, protection, and provision of compensation in case of any mishap.
Although personal injury law applies to all types of injuries caused due to a negligent act of a third person, it is more relevant in the event of an accident, especially a road accident. Normally, the victims of an accident don’t have sufficient knowledge about this law; hence they are unaware of the rights the law provides in such an incident.
The majority of the sufferers of accidents are ignorant of their rights. So, they don’t even consider approaching the court of law to claim the damages. Hence you must know at least the basics of this law.
What is Personal Injury?
By the dictionary, personal injury is an injury causedto a person’s body rather than to property or reputation. However, as per personal injury law, it can be defined as a physical or mental injury affected by a person due to any negligent act of another person.
In a broader sense, property damage can also be included in it.Road accidents like car, motorcycle, or truck accidents are the most common examples of personal injury. Accidents that occurred at a construction site are also included in it.
Similarly, medical malpractices and mishaps due to faulty products or devices are also covered under personal injury. Access the full article if you are searching for complete knowledge about personal injury laws in the UK.
What is the Personal Injury Law?
The relevant law in the UK is known as the “Law Reform (Personal Injuries) Act 1948”. This law defines personal injury as “any disease and impairment of a person’s physical or mental condition.”It is more commonly called “Personal Injury and Clinical Negligence Law.”
The very purpose of this law is to compensate a person who has suffered from an injury in a public or workplace, a road accident, or due tomedical negligence.So, you can claim compensation by filing a lawsuit through your attorney against the person responsible for your injury.
Types of Personal Injury Claims
Depending on the nature and extent of the injury sustained, there may be different personal injury claims. However, we can divide them into three major categories.
- Accidental Injury – It covers situations where another person’s negligence hurts anyone. It may include car accidents, workplace accidents, public place accidents, industrial accidents, and medical malpractices.
- Liability Claims – If someone is hurt or injured by a faulty device or product, he can directly file a lawsuit against the manufacturer. It is also called a strict liability claim.
- Institutional Torts – If you are a victim of a direct assault by another person or another person hurts you on purpose, you can sue him under the provisions of personal injury laws. It is commonly known as a claim under institutional tort.
What Every Accident Victim Should Know?
Every accident victim may not be aware of his rights provided in the personal injury laws. So, most of the victims of an accident might be reluctant to claim compensation due to non-awareness of the provisions of the law.
So, you need to have a good knowledge of the law specifically formulated for the benefit of accident victims. Here are some basic points you must be aware of.
- Time Limit for Filing a Claim
Ideally, you need to start legal action immediately after an incident that causes personal injury. However, as per law, the victim of an accident can file a claim in the relevant court of law within three years of the date of the incident. Based on the facts of the case, a court may also extend the validity of lodging the claim against the accident.
- Choose the appropriate personal injury lawyer
There may be so many professional lawyers who can help you claim compensation for personal injury. However, it is advisable to choose a lawyer from one of the “Law Society’s Personal Injury Accreditation Scheme members.”
Various associations of lawyers provide their services for personal injury claims on a profit basis. You can find an association operating in your area that can help you claim compensation against personal injury.
- Lawyer’s Fee
It may be quite expensive to hire a lawyer for personal injury claims. However, you may go for any of the available options as under.
- You may avail of insurance coverage if you have travel or car insurance, where a legal action fee is covered under the insurance policy.
- You can enter into a “conditional fee agreement” with your lawyer. It means the lawyer only agrees to charge a fee if he wins the case for you. However, if he fails to win the case, you may have to pay the legal expenses of the opposing party. But you can also avoid this expense if you have already taken insurance coverage for such an event.
What Can You Claim Under Personal Injury Compensation?
There are so many possible compensations you may claim under personal injury laws. It may include:
- Cost of medical treatment
- Compensation against loss of business or work
- Compensation against physical impairment
- Compensation against mental trauma
- Compensation against emotional distress
- Compensation against pain and suffering
Generally, there are two types of claims, Economic and Non-Economic. An economic damages claim may include the cost of medicines, possible future treatment costs, and loss of work hours caused due to an accident.
The non-Economic claim is a sort of intangible claim. It deals with the personal adversity caused due to an accident, such as a brain injury, permanent disability, or any other eventuality that hampers your normal activities.
Your lawyer can help you claim monetary compensation for any such incident. But that’s not as simple. Your lawyer must contest your case to the best of his abilities to convince the court in your favor.
Different Types of Personal Injury Claims Related to Accidents
Here are some very common types of personal injury claims associated with accidents.
- Road or traffic accidents
- Slips, trips, and accidents in a public place
- Workplace accidents
- Illness associated with work.
- Other accidents include animal attacks, dog bites, complex injuries, etc.
- Never try to settle the personal injury claim on your own. It is a complicated legal matter for which you must take the services of a qualified personal injury lawyer.
- Your lawyer will always try to settle your claim out of court. Let him do that. It turns out to be beneficial for you in most of the cases. However, if your lawyer believes your case should not be settled out of court, let him file a lawsuit.
- Try to provide all relevant information to your lawyer. He may ask different questions related to your case. Give all required information to him based on the facts. Don’t give any false information.
Awareness of the law is very important. Not necessary that you must know the technical legal details of a law but you must have a basic knowledge about the laws, especially those directly related to your personal life. Personal injury law is one of them.
This law is specifically formulated to protect your rights against personal injury. It allows you to claim compensation for the damage that happened due to an act of someone else. To claim such compensation, you need to take the help of a personal injury lawyer. So, always take benefits and claim the compensation per personal injury laws’ provisions.