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Personal Injury Claims Birmingham - The Complete Guide To Making Your Claim

Read our complete guide to making an personal injury claim in Birmingham and find out if you're eligible for compensation today. If you’re not sure whether you can make a claim or would like more advice about your position, contact us to speak to an expert solicitor on a no-win-no-fee basis. Call us free today 01252354412 or fill out the form at the top of this page.

Injuries sustained as a result of an accident can be life changing. They can affect your quality of life, your ability to work and your financial stability. This is why it's important that you are adequately compensated for any losses you may have suffered as a result of an accident that wasn't your fault. Often it's unclear whether you actually have a claim and for many, the claims process and what is required of them is confusing. This guide is designed to answer any questions you may have in relation to making a claim in Birmingham and the surrounding area. The guide focusses on helping you understand whether you have a claim, how to make a claim and how your claim will progress.

Birmingham personal injury

What will this Birmingham personal injury claims guide cover?

What information do I need to make a personal injury claim in Birmingham?

In order to make your case and raise an action in the Birmingham courts, your personal injury solicitor will require the following information from you:

  • The date the accident happened
  • When the accident happened
  • Where the accident happened
  • How the accident happened
  • The contact details of any witnesses to the accident
  • The details of your injuries including any medical diagnosis and/or any treatment received. You should retain all evidence of this.
  • Whether you are a member of a Trade Union - this may mean that you can receive free or reduced cost legal representation.

Your solicitor might also ask you for:

  • Proof of your loss of earnings and any other expenses that are a result of your injury.
  • Any documents relating to insurance policies you may have (household insurance, motor insurance etc). These may cover your legal costs for your claim.
  • Any other documents that may support your claim. This could be any evidence of similar accidents arising in the same circumstances or evidence of failings to ensure a duty of care towards you.

If you are lacking some of this information you may still be able to make a claim. Your solicitor will advise you of what is specifically needed in relation to your case.

If you need help at this stage call us free today 01252354412 or fill out the form at the top of this page.

Do I need a Birmingham-based personal injury lawyer to make a claim?

You may feel like the details surrounding your accident are so clear that making a claim will be straightforward and ultimately, easy for you to secure compensation. Personal injury cases can, however, be made complicated by a multitude of factors and if you begin a claim without legal representation, there's a chance you'll find a number of obstacles ahead of you.

Personal injury can be life changing and so an award of compensation can make a significant difference. Compensation covers many aspects of loss from loss of earning, to pain and suffering, medical expenses and decline in overall quality of life. Arguing for each of these factors can be challenging, especially if you do not have a thorough grasp of the law in this area and familiarity with previous cases.

That's where specialist personal injury lawyers come in. A legal expert in this area can ensure you receive the maximum compensation due to you – it's their profession. Does your lawyer need to be based in Birmingham? No, although local knowledge of the courts and easier access to local Birmingham legal advice can be invaluable.

Your claim may involve complex legal issues that you might be unaware of, making the case difficult to argue and equally, making any crucial oversights could result in you receiving a lower amount of compensation. It is absolutely essential you have legal advice from the outset if your claim falls into the following categories:

Severe injuries – This includes brain and spinal injuries or an injury in which you suffer significantly reduced capacity.

Long-term or permanent injuries – Where you are likely to be injured for a long period of time, indefinitely or the damage is irreparable.

Medical malpractice – Where your injury is caused by careless or negligent medical treatment.

These cases are particularly serious and complex and thus it is essential you seek professional advice.

In addition, insurance companies will ultimately challenge any claim for compensation to avoid paying. A personal injury solicitor will have vast experience in dealing with unwilling insurance companies and so can ensure you receive the compensation you deserve.

Sometimes having a solicitor will be enough to make an insurance company offer you a fair amount of compensation, as they can then avoid facing a trial that they are likely to lose.

If you need help at this stage call us free today 01252354412 or fill out the form at the top of this page.

What is a no win, no fee arrangement and should I be interested?

No win, no fee is just as it sounds. If the solicitor decides to take on your case, you will not pay them any fee unless they win the case for you. You will enter into what is known as a 'conditional fee agreement' with the solicitor that will set out the terms to which both parties agree. You will normally pay the solicitor a percentage of your compensation claim and potentially any court costs, however this will be negotiated with your solicitor and set out in your conditional fee agreement.

The main benefit of no win no fee is that it allows you to make your claim without any upfront costs. Many firms offer free consultations where your personal injury solicitor will ask questions about your case to asses whether your claim has a good prospect of success. The solicitor will only take on your case if they think they can win. This means that you don't run the risk of wasting your time or money on a claim that will in the end be unsuccessful. With no win, no fee you can be confident from the outset that your lawyer is looking to get you as much compensation as possible.

If you need help at this stage call us free today 01252354412 or fill out the form at the top of this page

What should I look for in a good personal injury Lawyer?

Firstly, you should look for your solicitor to be a specialist in the area of your claim. For example, if you are in a road accident or have a case for medical negligence you should look for lawyers who are specialists in these areas. Experience in dealing with cases similar to yours is essential and will strengthen your chances of securing the maximum compensation owed to you.

You should also look into your lawyers reputation. They must have good experience in your type of claim in order to create a good strategy for your case, advise you of how long different stages of the claim will take and give you an indication of the likely outcome.

You should also look for a lawyer who is open and honest about payment. Where possible, you should look for the kitemark of APIL (Association of Personal Injury Lawyers) - the national organisation for highly reputable personal injury lawyers. APIL lawyers follow a code of practice and are kept well up to date with developments in their practice area.

It is also important to consider how you will fund your case. Many lawyers will work on a no win, no fee basis. This means you will pay no fees unless the lawyer wins your case for you. This can be useful as you will have no upfront costs to pay.

If you need help at this stage call us free today 01252354412 or fill out the form at the top of this page.

How will my personal injury claim progress?

The first step in your personal injury claim will be for a letter to be sent from your solicitor to the person you are holding responsible for your accident (the defendant). This letter will set out the details of your injury and the circumstances under which you were injured – including why you are holding the defendant responsible.

The defendant must reply to this letter within a certain amount of time, usually three months and it's likely that a response will be received sooner. In their reply the defendant must state whether they accept or deny responsibility for your claim.

If the defendant accepts liability, they will usually settle your claim out of court.

Your solicitor will tell you what the think the likely value of your claim is and ask what you are willing to accept and whether you would like to make an offer to settle (known as a 'part 36 offer'). They will also explain what making this kind of offer will mean for you.

If the defendant responds reasonably and a settlement amount can be agreed, your claim will not need to progress to a court hearing.

Where you are unable to agree an amount with the defendant, your solicitor will advise you whether or not to take court action.

If the defendant claims they are not liable for your injury, your solicitor can also assist you in challenging this in court and making a compensation claim.

If you need help at this stage call us free today01252354412 or fill out the form at the top of this page.

Will I need to go to Court?

It is uncommon for personal injury claims to proceed to court as this results in increased costs. Normally personal injury claims are settled out of court for an agreed amount.

If there is no dispute about liability and severity of injuries, an insurance company would prefer to settle out of court.

However in serious cases where there is a dispute, you may have to attend court. Your solicitor will talk you through the court process and ensure you are comfortable with taking legal action.

If you need help at this stage call us free today01252354412 or fill out the form at the top of this page.

How much will my compensation claim be worth?

Assessing the potential worth of a compensation claim can be complex. There are different aspects to consider in any personal injury claim, all of which are assessed in light of the specific circumstances.

However, you can have an idea of the types of losses you can claim for:

    • The pain and suffering caused by the injury
    • Any mental injury caused by the accident
    • 'Loss of amenity' – this is any reduction in your quality of life as a result of your injury. This could be that you are unable to participate in leisure activities or carry out certain everyday activities.
    • Medical costs
    • The cost to loved ones of providing care to you as a result of your injury
    • Any costs incurred in adapting your home to cater for your injury
    • Any other expenses such as additional insurance or travel costs
    • Loss of earnings – this includes loss of potential and future earnings if you are no longer able to work, or have been forced to reduce your working hours.
If you need help at this stage call us free today 01252354412 or fill out the form at the top of this page.

When am I likely to receive payment?

Once you have accepted an offer of settlement, you will usually receive your compensation within 14-28 days. This timeframe is however only a general guide and there may be factors that affect this time scale.

Factors affecting timing of payment are:

Whether settlement was reached out of court – Your solicitor will usually try to ensure you receive your compensation as soon as possible, usually faster than 14 days. However, this depends on the defendant. If the compensation is not forthcoming it may be that proceedings are required to enforce the payment.

Court settlement – If your personal injury claim is settled as a result of a court hearing in the Birmingham courts, the court order will state when payment is due. Usually, this will be 21 days from the date the order is made. If payment is not made on this date, your lawyer can enforce the order through further court proceedings.

Some insurance companies however will send the compensation as soon as they receive the court order, this means you could receive your money within as little as 5 days.

You should ensure you solicitor has your bank details so that they can promprly make a BACS transfer to you when they receive your compensation. Alternatively you will receive a settlement cheque by mail which could delay your receipt of the payment.

If you need help at this stage call us free today 01252354412 or fill out the form at the top of this page.

The contents of this guide are not intended to constitute legal advice and you are strongly advised to seek independent professional advice on matters that affect you. If you need expert advice from experienced legal practitioners, contact us today, call 01252354412 or fill out the form at the top of this page.

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England & Wales

Last Updated

Friday, 15 January 2016


Personal Injury