The big news in the personal injury world this week has been the introduction in Parliament of the Civil Liability Bill which contains reforms of whiplash claims and changes to the way the discount rate applied to personal injury settlements is calculated.
Qualified One-Way Costs Shifting (QOCS) was introduced for all personal injury claims from 1 April 2013.
QOCS dictates that a successful defendant cannot recover his or her costs from the losing claimant, except in a number of circumstances. It applies to all personal injury cases unless the claimant had a pre-April 2013 Conditional Fee Agreement (no win-no fee agreement) and After the Event (ATE) insurance in place.
Section 57 of the Criminal Justice and Courts Act 2015 states that if a court finds that the claimant is entitled to damages, but is satisfied that the claimant has been fundamentally dishonest, the court has a duty to dismiss the claim – unless it is satisfied that the claimant would suffer substantial injustice.
Have you had a trip or slip accident in a supermarket or whilst out walking on pavements or roads?
If so, the most important evidence can be either CCTV footage or witness statements – or a combination of both – which will counter documentary evidence provided by the defendants.
All supermarkets are legally obliged to ensure their stores are clean and safe. If they fail to uphold this responsibility and, as a result, you have an accident causing injury, you will be able to claim compensation for the injuries you sustained and other financial losses incurred due to the accident.
In order to value a client’s injury claim it is not sufficient just to tell the other side the nature of the injuries and expect the parties to come to an accurate valuation. I will need to arrange a medical examination from a suitably qualified medical expert.
Fairgrounds & amusement parks have a duty of care to their visitors
Many of you would have read about the terrible accident on the Smiler ride at Alton Towers in which four people sustained serious personal injuries after two carriages collided at one of the lower sections of the track.
I am regularly advised by clients they believe that they’ve sustained a psychiatric injury as a result of an accident.
In English law a psychiatric injury is known as nervous shock. Often it is caused by being involved in an accident but it also covers witnessing an accident.
The SARAH bill will ensure that good samaritans are not sued if they perform first aid in an emergency situation.
The Social Action, Responsibility and Heroism Act received Royal Assent on 12th February 2015. The Bill was to make provision as to matters to which a court must have regard in determining a claim in negligence or breach of statutory duty.
Answer 2 – gathering evidence of any vehicles involved
If you have sustained a personal injury in a cycling accident involving a vehicle it’s very important to gather it’s registration number. In fast moving situations, especially if you’ve just been hit by a vehicle then accurately recording this information can be very difficult.