It is commonly known that following an accident, caused by someone else’s negligence, you are entitled to claim compensation for your injuries. You are also entitled to include a claim for any financial losses or expenses which you have incurred as a result of the accident. These losses are known as special damages. You are probably wondering what exactly you can seek to recover.
The most common types of financial losses are as follows:
- Medical Expenses – prescription charges, over-the-counter medication costs and the cost of any necessary medical equipment;
- Treatment costs – where any physiotherapy or other treatment is undertaken to assist recovery;
- Travel Expenses – parking charges and mileage in travelling to your GP, hospital appointments, physiotherapy or rehabilitation sessions;
- Loss of Earnings – this is where you have had to take time off work due to your injuries and includes any unpaid absence, loss of overtime and loss of unsocial hours benefit. Where you are self-employed this can include a claim for loss of profits;
- Care and Assistance – where you had had to rely on assistance with everyday household duties or elements of personal care which, but for the accident, you would have performed yourself.
Any losses claimed for must have been incurred as a direct result of the accident. The purpose of compensation is to put you back in the position you would have been in, but for the accident. The loss incurred must also be reasonable in that it was a necessary expense. Importantly, you also have a duty to take reasonable steps to minimise losses.
To support a claim for any of the types of financial losses or expenses described above, documentary evidence will be required as proof of the loss incurred. It will generally be necessary to retain receipts or invoices where purchases are made and in some instances bank statements which show the purchase will be necessary. If you have lost earnings due to taking time off work because of your injuries, it will be necessary to provide wage slips for the 13 weeks prior to the accident. We advise those injured to keep a clear record or spreadsheet of the losses they have incurred.
If you have been injured in an accident that was not your fault and have suffered financial losses as a result please get in touch.