What is compensation in personal injury and clinical negligence cases? Julian monk, senior solicitor, explains. The overall aim of compensatory damages in personal injury and clinical negligence cases is to put the claimant, so far as money can achieve it, in the same position as they would have been if they had not suffered the injury. Full compensation should be provided, and it should be fair, reasonable and just.
What areas of compensation are there?
There are three main areas of compensation:
- Pain, suffering and loss of amenity
- Past losses
- Future losses
How much compensation will I receive for pain and suffering?
So far as pain and suffering is concerned, the Courts rely on the Guidelines for the Assessment of General Damages in personal injury cases provided by the Judicial College. There is difficulty in valuing pain, suffering and loss of amenity in money terms but the aim is for consistency and reasonableness.
What are past losses?
So far as past losses are concerned, the claimant is entitled to compensation for their reasonable needs. For example, if the cost of private medical treatment paid by a claimant is reasonable then it is no answer for the defendant to point to cheaper treatment which is also reasonable. Regard is to be had to the reasonable needs of the claimant.
What are future losses?
So far as future costs are concerned, assessment can be less accurate. The claimant is entitled to compensation to meet their reasonable needs having regard to all the relevant circumstances. Proportionality is applicable as between the cost of an item and the benefit to be derived from it. The assessment of future losses involves an assessment of the chances of future events which is why it makes it less predictable and certain.
There is also a duty on the claimant to reduce or minimise their losses and they must take reasonable steps to do so.
Our job is to ensure that you receive full, fair, reasonable and just compensation and that insurers do not shortchange you.
Our Personal Injury and Clinical Negligence lawyers are all members of the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers and have many years of experience dealing with such claims. If you would like to make a claim, then please contact Julian Monk or Domini David for a free preliminary telephone conversation or meeting.