Reasons to choose Wilson Browne
One question that is often asked is what is the value of my claim?…
…It is difficult to place a value on any claim during early stages in the litigation process as there are numerous factors to consider. The amount of compensation or damages awarded depends on the amount of damage caused as a result of the negligence. Awards range from £1,000 to in excess of £1,000,000.
When one is successful with a medical negligence claim, 2 types of damages are awarded; general damages and special damages.
General damages are for the injury itself for the pain and suffering and loss of amenity. These can be quantified with the help of the Judicial College Guidelines which are published every year. There is a chapter dedicated to each area of the body and a monetary value is recommended within a range from minor to severe.
Special damages are the financial losses incurred as a result of the negligence. Sometimes called “out of pocket expenses” They can include both past and future financial losses. These may include, but are not limited to, care and assistance, medical treatment expenses, loss of earnings, travel costs, parking etc. The more special damages that have been incurred increase the value of the claim.
The highest value claims for multi million pounds tend to be for life changing injuries such as brain or spinal injury where future care and assistance will be required for life. Factors such as age and life expectancy are also important when valuing such a claim.
When a claim involves someone who has died as a result of the negligence, the law tends to limit the claim if there is no spouse or dependents. Often in these cases the value can be as low as £5000. If there is a spouse, this will increase the value of the claim by the statutory bereavement award of £12,980. If there are children or a spouse who are financially dependent on the deceased this will further increase the value of the claim.
On conclusion of a claim, damages are paid in full and final settlement to the Claimant in a lump sum. However, periodical payments can also be agreed in high value cases whereby an agreed amount is paid to a Claimant annually for their lifetime. In a small number of cases Provisional damages can also be awarded to Claimant’s who have not made a full recovery at the time of settlement. If it can be evidenced that there is a significant chance their injury will deterioration the future they can make a further claim for compensation.