We expect medical professionals, such as doctors, surgeons and nurses, to take proper care of us, protecting our health and wellbeing. Unfortunately, private and NHS negligence does happen, with the potential for a devastating impact on those involved and their loved ones.
If you have been affected by medical negligence (also known as ‘clinical negligence’), it can cause life-changing injuries and emotional trauma, impacting every aspect of your life. Our medical negligence solicitors can support you with the claims process to ensure you are compensated for what you have experienced.
At Ashtons Legal, our solicitors recognise how upsetting and confusing this position can be for our clients. When you choose to instruct our clinical negligence solicitors, we will provide a friendly and caring service, with empathy, compassion and close support throughout.
Compensation for a medical negligence claim won’t undo what has happened, but it can improve your quality of life and help with the financial impact your injuries have had on your everyday life. It can help you to receive the support you need financially and help you to identify any future needs you might have as a result of your injuries.
Our medical negligence solicitors can offer you:
- A free initial consultation on your claim
- No win, no fee or legal aid funding
- A negotiation-led approach that means most claims are settled out of court
- Independently accredited expertise you can trust
- A very high track record of successful claims
- A sensitive, personal service to support you during this difficult time
- A free rehabilitation service to aid your recovery
- The opportunity to understand and obtain answers about what happened to you.
Contact our Clinical Negligence Solicitors
To make a medical negligence claim, please contact our experienced medical negligence specialists. You will be offered a free initial consultation to sensitively discuss the particulars of your case so that our solicitors can advise you on the potential merits of any claim that you might have and explain the next steps.
Ashtons Legal Medical Negligence team
Our clinical negligence solicitors have decades of collective expertise assisting clients from all backgrounds. This experience covers all manner of medical negligence scenarios, including those that are more complicated, such as brain injury claims. Drawing on our in-depth knowledge in the medical negligence field, we will deliver clear, realistic advice you can trust.
The Ashtons Legal team is dedicated to providing a friendly and constructive service. With us by your side, you can be confident of receiving top-quality advice and support from start to finish.
Senior members of our team are recognised by the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL) as either Senior Fellows or Senior Litigators. They are on the Law Society Clinical Negligence panel, and Sharon Allison, our Head of Medical Negligence, also belongs to the Action Against Medical Accidents (AvMA) Clinical Negligence Panel.
What Medical Negligence Claims Can Our Solicitors Assist With?
Our friendly and proficient lawyers at Ashtons Legal can support clients with medical negligence compensation claims, including:
- Amputation Negligence Claims
- Birth Injury Claims
- Brain Injury Claims
- Cancer Misdiagnosis Claims
- Cardiac Negligence Claims
- Cerebral Palsy Claims
- Fatal Medical Negligence Claims
- Infection & Sepsis Claims
- Spinal Injury Negligence Claims
- Stillbirth Claims
- Surgical Negligence Claims.
How To Make a Medical Negligence Claim
When you instruct the Ashtons Legal medical negligence team, we will clearly explain the entire claims process. We will then guide you from start to finish, ensuring everything has been done correctly.
Our medical negligence compensation claims service includes:
- Assessing your medical negligence claim and arranging funding via a ‘no win, no fee’ agreement or Legal Aid, if appropriate
- Building your medical negligence case, including access to experienced medical experts to support your claim
- Drafting and submitting a Letter of Claim to the defendant
- Mediation processes to reach a settlement
- Representing you in Court if necessary
- Access to our free rehabilitation service for ongoing support in respect of your health and welfare.
To start the process of making a medical negligence claim or to find out more, please get in touch. You can also find more information about the specific processes involved below.
Our Medical Negligence Claims Service
Assessing your medical negligence claim
When you contact us, we will discuss the details of your medical negligence incident and the impact it has had on your life and your loved ones. This assessment will be handled with the utmost sensitivity. The solicitor you speak to will ensure you are completely comfortable and provide close personal support.
This initial discussion allows us to assess the strength of a claim and make a realistic decision about whether we think we can help you. If we believe it is reasonable to make a medical negligence claim, we will advise on the options available and clearly walk you through the process, explaining each step.
Additionally, we will discuss funding options, including how our ‘no win, no fee’ agreement works and whether your claim is appropriate for legal aid funding.
Building your medical negligence case
In order to properly investigate your claim, it is often the case that our solicitors will have to take a witness statement from you and instruct medical experts. It is necessary to do this from the outset so that we can identify any potential issues with your claim as soon as possible and provide you with realistic advice on the likely success of your claim. It is through the instruction of medical experts that we are able to help find out why you suffered your injury and what could or should have been done in order to avoid your injury.
Submitting the Letter of Claim
If it is determined that you have a claim for medical negligence, which is supported by medical expert evidence, our solicitors can assist you with the next steps of the process. This involves drafting a Letter of Claim that sets out the allegations of medical negligence to the Defendant(s).
Once the Letter of Claim has been sent to the Defendant, they have five months from receipt to respond, either admitting negligence or disputing the claim.
In the event that the defendant responds to the Letter of Claim admitting that they breached the duty of care owed to you and that the breach caused your injury to occur, our solicitors will advise you on how best to value your case so that efforts can be made to get your claim to a stage where settlement negotiations can commence.
At Ashtons Legal, we deal in all aspects of negotiation, including written/oral offers, round-table meetings and mediation.
In some cases, a Defendant will opt to defend the claim and deny allegations of negligence. If this occurs, it would be standard practice for us to instruct a barrister on your behalf and have a meeting with you, the barrister and the medical experts in order to test our evidence and the reasonableness of the Defendant’s denial. If our medical experts maintain their position, and we consider there remain reasonable prospects of succeeding, we will issue court proceedings on your behalf.
Our medical negligence solicitors have years of experience representing clients in court and always aim to secure the highest levels of compensation available.
A recent example of a court case won by Ashtons Legal can be found here.
Free rehabilitation service
At Ashtons Legal, we appreciate that clients may need specialist health care, support and rehabilitation before they have access to any interim damages. Our expert lawyers work with our rehabilitation team to provide our clients with a rehab service free of charge, regardless of whether or not your claim is successful.
For more information about this service, please get in touch with our medical negligence team.
Medical Negligence Compensation Claims Fees
‘No win, no fee’ medical negligence claims
Our team work on a ‘no win, no fee’ basis. This means that you will only have to contribute to your legal fees if your claim is successful. In circumstances where you are successful, the majority of your legal fees will be paid by the Defendant. In order to maintain transparency from the outset, we will explain to you (before you sign any agreement for us to act on your behalf) the level of your contribution to your fees if you win right from the outset.
Please be assured that if your claim is unsuccessful, you will not have to pay anything towards your fees.
Legal aid for medical negligence claims
It may be possible for your medical negligence claim to be publicly funded through legal aid. During your initial consultation, our solicitors will assess your circumstances and advise whether this is possible. Should you be eligible, the team will ensure you fully understand the fee process and what to expect from the start.
Frequently Asked Questions About Medical Negligence Claims
What is medical negligence?
Clinical professionals such as doctors, nurses and dentists owe a duty of care to their patients. If they treat their patients in a way that would not be supported by their peers and that treatment results in the patient suffering injury, their actions will have amounted to medical negligence.
What are some examples of medical negligence?
Medical negligence can occur in countless scenarios. Some examples of medical negligence include:
- Birth negligence
- Surgical errors
- Prescription errors
- Anaesthesia administration errors
- Late diagnosis
- Post-surgical negligence.
How much compensation can you get for medical negligence?
The basic principle is that a Defendant is responsible for putting the injured patient back in the financial position they would have been in had the medical negligence not occurred. This means that no two claims will ever be valued for the same amount. The value of a claim will depend on many factors and, most importantly, what future costs are likely to be incurred by the patient as a result of their injuries.
There are two types of damages that claimants have the right to claim if they suffer medical negligence:
General damages: this is the purely compensatory part of your damages and is not based on any financial losses you have suffered. The damages represent the pain, suffering and loss of amenity (i.e. not being able to carry out activities you previously could) you have suffered as a result of your injury.
Special damages: these are the financial costs you have suffered as a result of the medical negligence. These damages consider both the costs you have already incurred and the costs you are likely to incur in the future as a result of your injuries. They might include heads of loss such as:
- Loss of earnings
- Loss of pension contributions
- Care provision
- Equipment and aids
- Rehabilitation and therapy costs
- Medical treatment
- Adaptations to your property or alternative accommodation
- Travel expenses.
How do I know if I have a claim for medical negligence?
It can be difficult to pinpoint exactly whether you have experienced medical negligence by yourself without any guidance, so we always recommend speaking to a legal professional about your experience. A solicitor will be able to assess the situation and the impact it has had on you and then provide advice on the likely merits of any claim you might have.
What is the process of a medical negligence claim?
If you believe you are eligible for a medical negligence claim, there are several steps that will be taken during the claims process, including:
- Discussing your potential claim with a solicitor
- Building your claim
- Submitting the letter of claim
- Negotiating a Settlement where possible
- Court proceedings.
You can read more about these steps in the ‘Our Medical Negligence Claims Service’ section above.
What do you have to prove to make a medical negligence claim?
There are three things which must be proved in a medical negligence claim, including:
- The defendant owed you a duty of care
- That the duty of care was breached in some way
- That this breach of duty resulted in injury.
Is there a time limit to making a medical negligence claim?
Generally, in England and Wales, there is a three-year limit to making a medical negligence claim. Typically these three years will start from the date the breach of duty occurred. However, in some circumstances, it will start from your date of knowledge, i.e. the date upon which you became aware or reasonably should have been aware that negligence may have occurred.
In certain circumstances, the time limit to make a medical negligence claim can be extended. Examples include where:
- The party who suffered the medical negligence does not have mental capacity – e.g. because they have suffered a brain injury – for instances like this, there are no time limits.
- The injured party was under the age of 18 when the medical negligence occurred – in situations like these, the claimant’s parents or guardians can make a claim on the child’s behalf until the child turns 18 years old and, if they choose not to, the child then has until they are 21 years old to make a claim.
Why Choose Ashtons Legal?
The team at Ashtons Legal is dedicated to providing a friendly and compassionate service for clients, creating an atmosphere that is supportive alongside our proficient and top-quality service.
When working with our clients, we explain every single detail in plain English with no legal jargon, so everything is fully understood with no confusion.
Ashtons Legal is a well-established law firm with solicitors who have a wealth of combined expertise and are dedicated to delivering clear, effective and caring advice and guidance to our clients.
Our expertise is independently acknowledged by leading client guides, the Legal 500 and Chambers and Partners. Our team also hold a number of respected accreditations, including Lexcel, AvMa, Brain Injury Group, APIL and many more.
Get in touch with our Medical Negligence Solicitors
To make a medical negligence claim, please contact our experienced medical negligence solicitors. You will be offered a free initial consultation to sensitively discuss the particulars of your case and plan the potential next steps.