Apart from compensation, what else should you expect from a personal injury claim?
When you pursue a claim for compensation you will be hoping to recover compensation for your injuries and losses.
However, there is much more that can be done to help you than obtaining a cash settlement.
Here are some of the services that you could receive from your personal injury solicitor as your case progresses. The list is not meant to be exhaustive and the advice and service you receive in your case will be specifically tailored to you.
Rehabilitation for accident injuries
Unfortunately for many people, their injuries do not resolve quickly. In many cases injuries can continue for many months, years or in the worst cases, for life.
A personal injury solicitor may be able to assist you with the organisation of rehabilitation. This can take many forms, but the most obvious examples are physiotherapy or psychological treatment. This would ordinarily be organised on a private basis to ensure treatment can start immediately.
In virtually all cases the cost of rehabilitation treatment will be met by the insurers of the party at fault for your accident.
Immediate Needs Assessment
If your injuries are more serious and prevent you carrying out even the most basic day to day activities and that inability is likely to continue for a prolonged period of time, your solicitor is likely to try to arrange an Immediate Needs Assessment.
This is a report prepared by an independent expert, usually specialising in rehabilitation and care, which details what your immediate needs are. It will contain very detailed information about everything and anything that would assist you to continue with your day to day life.
For example, it might state that you would benefit from adaptations to your house; some form of home help, such as a cleaner or a gardener; or the provision of equipment such as a particular chair or bed to make you more comfortable.
Once the report is available your solicitor will liaise with the insurers of the party at fault for your accident to obtain funding to immediately put in place the provisions which the report identifies.
The settlement of your personal injury claim does not all need to be paid in one instalment at the end of the case. In most cases your settlement will be recovered in full at the conclusion of your case.
However, as a general rule you are entitled to recover up to 75% of your compensation prior to the conclusion of the case if you can demonstrate a pressing need for income.
The most obvious example is if you are off work and not receiving full earnings but need to pay your bills. Without your normal income an inability to meet your bills can lead to financial difficulty and increased stress, anxiety and worry.
If you do need income during your case, there is the opportunity to liaise with the insurers of the party at fault to obtain an interim payment to assist you.
For many people injured in accidents, time away from work can be a daunting and stressful experience. Many, but not all, employers are supportive of their employees who are injured in accidents. They are often more than willing to assist their employees returning to work, even when the compensation claim is being made against the injured persons’ employer.
However, from time to time absence from work or a return to work after an accident does not always go smoothly. If you ever find yourself in this position, you should seek specialist and expert advice from an employment lawyer so that you are fully aware of your rights.
As well as employing specialist personal injury lawyers, Digby Brown employs separate employment lawyers, specifically for this purpose.
Advice in Relation to Benefits you can Claim
After an accident you may become entitled to government benefits which will assist you financially during any absence from work, or in some cases on a permanent ongoing basis.
It is important that you are aware of what benefits you are entitled to claim. Digby Brown produces a leaflet which can be provided to you explaining what benefits you can claim and when.
We also have a dedicated welfare rights advisory team whom our solicitors can obtain more detailed information about benefits from if required.
Furthermore you may need advice about setting up a Personal Injury Settlement Trust to protect your means tested benefits. Such a trust will ensure that your personal injury settlement is not considered when assessing your current or future entitlement to means tested benefits.
Referral to Charities
We understand that injuries can have a significant and lasting effect on you and your family.
If you feel you may benefit from or would like further information about charities which can support and assist you, both before and after your case has settled, your solicitor maybe able to put you in touch with the right people at the right charities that would be of particular benefit to you.
Digby Brown has close connections with a number of charities that provide expert support in specialist areas. If you would like advice about charities appropriate to you, please let your solicitor know.