What COVID-19 means for your case
By now you’ll know Digby Brown staff are working from home to help people access justice - after all, locked down doesn’t mean closed down.
So while your legal advisor continues to progress your case, we thought we’d shed some light on the precise challenges impacting the justice system.
Why? Because we know “It’s the not knowing” that causes frustrations so giving you some insight, assurance and answers matters.
All our offices are closed
We have a duty of care to staff and visitors so they will stay closed until the restrictions allow us to return to the office. However, you can still reach your solicitor via email and if face-to-face chats are needed then video calls with WhatsApp, FaceTime etc can be used.
Courts now open
With courts now open cases will be able to proceed, albeit at a slightly slower pace. Following the closures there is a backlog of cases from the last few months to work through which may cause delay.
Your solicitor will be able to update you with any delays involving your case as well as the new procedure for virtual attendance should you be required to attend.
New clients – thinking of making a claim?
Our Legal Enquiries Team are still very much open, if you have an enquiry please do not hesitate to contact them to discuss your options. You can reach them at 0333 200 5925 (open 8am - 7pm Monday to Friday).
Gathering evidence for your case
To successfully settle your case – and for the right amount - we need to gather supporting evidence. These include witness statements, police reports, medical evaluations, documents from your employer, etc.
The new social distancing protocols make these kinds of things harder to gather but we continue to try to do things over the phone, via email or video conferencing where possible. Your solicitor will keep you posted and inform you of any update.
Being personal injury experts means we need access to your medical records to properly assess your injuries and value your claim. However with NHS staff rightly focused on tackling COVID-19 there are understandable delays in these records being sent from hospitals and GP surgeries. Your solicitor will keep you posted and inform you of any update.
Trials and judgements
If your case was meant to have a hearing during lockdown then this is postponed and will be rearranged now that the courts are re-opening. If your case has already had a trial (known as a ‘Proof’) and you were awaiting a judgement, then this may also be delayed.
We know – as if the legal process was already difficult enough!
Lockdown, social distancing and courts adjusting to new technology means there is only so much we can do because while our lives have changed, the legal system hasn’t and your case still needs to follow certain procedures.
We don’t want to add to your problems, we want to find solutions… so rest assured, we are doing everything we can to keep things moving but if COVID-19 restrictions hinder progress then we have no choice but to wait.
So to our clients, colleagues and peers – thank you for your patience and understanding as we try and navigate these challenges.
We’ll see you again soon.
Last reviewed 11 September 2020.
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