MFSG Leaflet/web page for introducing legal advice
Who do you turn to?
It can be difficult to know who to turn to when you need professional advice following an accident or injury. It is important that you have someone you can trust. Most importantly it is vital that you instruct someone who has the experience and expertise needed to deal with your legal issues.
MFSG are working with specialist law firm Bond Pearce who have many years of experience and expertise in acting for service personnel and their families both at home and abroad. In fact their team is made up of ex service men and women some of whom still have partners serving in the armed forces. As such they understand the legal issues and they understand with unrivalled empathy the problems that you face.
The MoD is like any other employer - they are responsible for the health and safety of all their employees both home and abroad. The Bond Pearce armed forces team handle a large number of cases each year for those who have been injured whilst on training exercise or in the duty of their day to day work. Armed forces injury and compensation claims can be complex and it is important that your solicitor is someone who understands the vagaries of the system.
For more detailed information, advice and case studies please visit www.bondpearcepersonalinjury.co.uk
For personal injury claims, there is generally a three year time limit from the date of the accident during which legal proceedings must be commenced. There are exceptions. This is different for children and there are also special rules for people who cannot manage their own affairs. If an accident occurs overseas then the time limits also vary.
Who was at fault?
A claim for compensation will only succeed if fault can be established. An accident may have been partly your fault. Whilst this may reduce the level of compensation awarded it does not mean you cannot bring a claim. In situations where you are injured in a war zone you may be unable to bring a civil claim but to claim under the Armed Services Compensation Scheme. However we would advise that you speak to a lawyer in any event to see if you can claim as a civil claim can run in tandem with a Compensation Scheme claim and the amount you will receive will be higher in a civil court than under the scheme.
Funding legal claims
There are a range of options for funding a legal claim. For example you may have legal expense insurance as part of your car, building insurance or credit card. You might be eligible for legal aid which is still available in a small number of cases most notably clinical negligence. Otherwise you might be considered for a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA) which is more commonly known as a ‘No Win, No Fee’.
How does compensation work and what can be claimed for?
No amount of money can make a serious injury better or replace the untimely death of a loved one. However, a serious injury or the loss of a spouse or close relative often has grave financial consequences. This is where our recommended solicitors’ experience of representing clients in serious injury and fatal accident claims can help.
For those injured in an accident, subject to proving that your injuries have been caused by the negligence or wrongful act of a third party, you will be able to recover compensation for the injuries that you have suffered. In most cases, reports will have to be obtained from appropriate medical experts which will consider the injuries, any medical treatment you have had and may need in the future, and the long term prognosis. In addition to compensation for the injuries themselves, you will also be able to recover monies for your past and future losses. This can include loss of earnings, accommodation costs (if for example your injuries require your home to be adapted or for new accommodation to be sought) aids and equipment, cost of medical treatment and travel expenses.
Do I need a specialist lawyer?
Many firms of solicitors advertise their services and may have departments that act for people who have sustained injuries. It is however very important, that you seek the advice and assistance of a solicitor who is a specialist in this area and has the experience of dealing with a case such as yours. Claims for compensation following an injury are not always straightforward and it is vital that an expert is found especially if the matter is severe involving the loss of a limb, a head or spinal injury, the death of a loved one, or if the claim concerns potentially negligent medical treatment.
For more information regarding injury within the armed forces and also for an outline of the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme please visit www.bondpearcepersonalinjury.co.uk
About this page
The information included on this page was compiled by Bond Pearce LLP. It is intended as a brief introduction. It is not to be considered to be a precise statement of the law and must not be relied upon in making any decisions about a claim. Legal advice should always be sought.
Bond Pearce LLP
www.bondpearcepersonalinjury.co.uk - Free phone helpline 0800 915 4650
Armed Forces Personal Injuries Website