An essential skill of the experienced personal injury practitioner is the ability to properly assess the level of damages to which you are entitled for your injury (ies) known as general damages and to recognise and assess the full extent of your financial losses and expenses arising from the accident known as special damages.
The proper assessment of general damages is dependent on obtaining your medical records except in the most straightforward of cases and obtaining a medical report from an expert with the appropriate experience and skill to assess the nature and extent of your injury (ies) and to provide a prognosis . For example an Orthopaedic Surgeon should be instructed if you have fractured your wrist but it may be appropriate to obtain a report from a GP if your injuries are minor.
If your professional advisor has settled your claim without obtaining a medical report you may have received an inadequate amount of compensation and you could pursue a professional negligence claim unless you were told of the risks and decided to settle anyway.
Other situations that may give rise to a claim include a failure by your professional advisor to wait until the expert (s) has given a final prognosis before settling the claim unless you were told of the risks and decided to settle anyway or a failure to properly investigate all aspects of your injury (ies). For example a failure to investigate the consequences of a possible head injury.
The proper assessment of special damages is dependent on a full understanding of the nature and effect of your injury (ies) and its impact on your life. Many special damages claims are straightforward and may include claims for loss of earnings, travel and damaged items but there may also be claims for care and assistance, help with DIY (where supported by the medical evidence) and where the injuries are serious the losses and expenses may continue into the future and include a need for on-going care, adaptations to property, aids and equipment, loss of earnings taking into account promotions and salary reviews and loss of pension. Without the requisite experience and knowledge, a professional advisor can fail to recognise the full impact of your injury (ies) on your life and as a consequence fail to claim something to which you are entitled.
If you think that your professional advisor has under-settled your claim you need to choose a solicitor who not only understands how the law relating to professional negligence works but who also has the experience and expertise to understand what evidence is needed to properly assess the right level of general damages and to put together a comprehensive schedule of your past and future financial losses and expenses.
Hilary Meredith Solicitors Ltd has years of experience of pursuing professional negligence claims against personal injury practitioners and of pursuing complex personal injury litigation and has an established reputation for its work in these fields.
For more information please view the Hilary Meredith Solicitors Ltd Professional Negligence FAQ’s
To discuss your claim free of charge with our professional negligence team please contact us on 0800 124 4444 or click start your claim now.