One of the most common questions we are asked by people who have a claim with us is how much compensation they are likely to receive.
A medical valuation is one of many steps necessary to calculate the amount.
This is an understandable priority for people who have been injured through no fault of their own and maybe had time off work or need to cover rehab and medical costs.
When calculating how much compensation is due for your claim, there are a number of factors which must be taken into account relating to your injuries. The compensation for general damages will take into consideration:
- Loss of amenity
The majority of Road Traffic Accident claims that are settled each year are for soft tissue type injuries to the neck, shoulders and spine (these are often referred to as ‘whiplash’ claims but that phrase doesn’t really cover the full extent and complexity these injuries can have.
Once you have attended a medical assessment, these types of injuries are fairly simple to value. Based on the prognosis given by the expert within their report, including the length of time the injury is expected to last, it is then relatively straightforward to place a value on how much compensation is due.
For more serious injuries, where pain, suffering, and loss of amenity is more severe the medical valuation will be higher. The amounts that are awarded for different types of injuries are set by the legal profession into a type of ‘price list’ that’s used as a guide for solicitors to negotiate on.
For example, with a straightforward six-month whiplash injury to the neck, you could expect to recover compensation e in the region of £1,870 – £2,090 for the injury.
Here at Bott and Co this is certainly the financial bracket we would be looking to settle the claim within. Having said this, each case must be judged on its own merits.
This is particularly true if you have severe symptoms, in which case the compensation due may fall above the figures given, or where you have only experienced very minor symptoms and so the compensation due may fall below those mentioned.
When valuing a claim we will definitely consider whether you attended their GP or hospital as a result of the injury (although failure to attend the GP or hospital will not necessarily affect the value of the claim as a point taken in isolation).
We will also consider whether you required time off work, whether your daily activities were restricted and whether you had any pre-existing conditions, or had been involved in previous accidents resulting in similar injuries. All of this information should be contained within the medical report as well as being covered through detailed conversations between you and your solicitor.
Serious Personal Injury
For more serious injuries, it may be that the injury cannot be valued upon a GP report alone, and more specialist opinion is required. For example, if you suffered a broken bone, it would not be appropriate for you to be examined by a GP; it would instead be more appropriate for you to have your injuries assessed by a Consultant Orthopedic Surgeon.
On occasion, the expert instructed will examine you and consider whether the injuries should have further examination with a different expert of a different medical discipline. For example, if you were clearly still suffering with psychological symptoms arising from the accident, on examination the expert may recommend that you be assessed by a psychologist or psychiatrist.
Here at Bott and Co it is very important for us as your solicitor to ensure that your claim is properly valued upon the injuries sustained and that there is no danger of under compensating you due to a failure to obtain thorough medical evidence that details every element of the injury sustained.
If a report from a medical expert is unclear and it is difficult to value the claim based upon the expert’s report, then we would return to the expert and raise questions about the report. We do this to make sure we are entirely happy and that we have the full picture regarding your injuries relating to the accident, the likely future prognosis for the injuries, any restrictions to your working or home life as a result of the injuries and any future treatment or surgery requirements.
Only when we have the complete picture are we able to provide an accurate valuation of the claim.
Please note – this information is relevant to road traffic accident claims only. If you’ve suffered an accident abroad or and wish to make a claim then speak to our legal team about medical valuations for holiday claims.