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My Medical Claim FAQs

Medical Negligence claims frequently asked questions

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Call us on 0800 999 1234 or complete the form above and we will provide you with expert legal advice at no cost to you

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Medical Negligence?

Medical Negligence is when health care professionals make a mistake which  causes you to suffer an injury, or causes a pre-existing illness to worsen. This could be because of a misdiagnosis, incorrect treatment or surgical mistakes.

Do I Have A Claim?

The first step is to contact us as soon as possible so that we can tell you if we think you have a case and how much compensation you might be able to claim.

To successfully bring a claim for clinical negligence your solicitor will need to consider whether the care you received was substandard (breach of duty) and that the Defendant’s action(s) caused your injury (causation).

It is not enough to simply prove that the care you received was of a poor standard. It must also be proved that you suffered injury and financial loss as a result of the poor care.

What are the time limits for making a medical negligence claim?

There are important time limits in clinical negligence cases. The general rule is that you must start a claim within three years from when you found out that you suffered an injury as a result of medical negligence. However, there are some exceptions to this rule:

  • In the case of children, the three-year time limit comes into effect when your child reaches 18 which means that any claim must be brought before they turn 21.
  • If a person lacks mental capacity to make a claim, then there is no time limit for making a claim.

Who Will Pay My Legal Costs?

Most claims are brought on a no win no fee basis which means that you have nothing to pay if your claim is unsuccessful. The no win no fee is usually supported by an insurance policy and payment of the insurance premium is deferred to the end of the case, to ensure that you are fully protected from having to pay any costs if you do not win your case.

If you win your case then part of the insurance premium is paid by your opponent; part is not, and this would have to be paid from your compensation.

These payments are however subject to specific limits and we will give you very clear advice about the limits of any fees you may be charged at the outset and regularly update you.

No Win No Fee is only one of the funding options available and we will talk you through the various options - including legal expenses insurance and legal aid to ensure that you are supported by the best funding option to suit your circumstances.

How Much is My Claim Worth?

Assessment of compensation must always be a matter of individual assessment in each case, as every case is unique and is paid to you in an attempt to make up for your pain and suffering and for the financial and other losses you may have suffered as a result of your injury. 

However, you will only recover compensation if you can successfully prove a claim against the Defendant, and you can only claim what you can prove you have spent or suffered as a loss.

Will I Have to go to Court?

The Court expects the parties involved to find ways of resolving claims where possible without matters having to be decided by the Court, and in the vast majority of cases settlement will be achieved before you have to go to Court.  

But if you do have to go to Court, then we will be there to guide you and support you through the process, together with your barrister and medical experts.

If I Claim Against My GP or Hospital Will it Affect My Future Care?

Neither your GP nor the hospital has the right to refuse to treat you simply because you have brought a claim against them and your future care will not be affected.

In practice however, you or your GP may feel that your relationship has broken down and that you may feel more comfortable in seeking an alternative GP provider. This could be a simple process of changing practice or simply seeing a different doctor within the same practice.

At a hospital, you can ask to be treated by a different doctor or you can be referred elsewhere, if you choose to do so.

What if I Just Want An Explanation and An Apology?

You may not be seeking compensation but want an apology for the mistake that was made and an explanation about why it happened, and we can help you get the answers and apology that you are looking for.

In the first instance you should access the relevant complaints procedure as this may resolve your concerns and if not, should resolve in a reasoned and hopefully open response.

For NHS Complaints, we recommend that you address your complaint to the Chief Executive of the Trust at the Trust Headquarters. 

Structuring your complaint letter

  • Introduce yourself - Name - DOB - Address - Hospital/NHS number etc
  • Make a brief overview statement of your concern
  • Outline what happened
  • List questions that you would like answers to
  • Request copies of procedures and policies where relevant to the event or question
  • Request copies of investigation reports where relevant to the events/question
  • Close by asking when you can expect to receive their response 

If you require any legal advice following the exhaustion of the Complaint’s procedure, then we would be happy to review the matter.

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