With the increase in Christmas advertising from September onwards there also appears to be an increase in enquiries to personal injury solicitors in the hope that they will receive their compensation in time for Christmas.
So, will a Claimant starting a personal injury claim in September receive their compensation in time for Christmas? Unfortunately, this is not necessarily the case and if their claim is settled within this short time frame it is likely that their injuries will be under valued.
It is impossible to predict at the early stages how long a claim will take to submit and settle. This will firstly depend on how long it takes to establish who was at fault for the accident. Once this has been established medical evidence needs to be obtained to prove that the accident caused the injuries sustained and to identify the extent of the injuries. Every claim is different, so if a personal injury solicitor advises you that your claim will be settled and you will have your compensation quickly, terminate your retainer and find someone else.
The majority of claims that have a potential value of between £1,000.00 and £25,000.00 are submitted to the opponent through the Ministry of Justice claims portal. Once acknowledged by the Opponent they have a set time to respond with their position on liability. What may seem like a cut and dried claim to a Claimant may actually be more complicated. If the Defendant admits liability for the accident then medical evidence can be obtained so as to establish which injuries were caused by the accident. If however, liability is denied then further investigations will be required to prove who was at fault for the accident. In many cases liability is denied by the Defendant throughout the claim and proceedings are issued in Court so that a judge can decide.
When it comes to considering the value of the claim, this will depend on the injuries sustained, how long it takes the Claimant to recover and how many other losses (such as loss of earnings through unpaid time off work) are incurred as a result of the accident. In many cases only one medical report is required. If this is the case the claim will settle far quicker than those that require further reports following treatment or reports from experts in different fields.
Once all evidence in support of the claim has been obtained negotiations can begin. This should lead to settlement but in some cases can his may result in a visit to Court for a judge to decide the correct level of damages to be awarded.
Here at Ralli Solicitors we ensure that our clients are informed of the process from the outset and updated at regular stages throughout their claim.