I had a rare day off work and didn’t really have anything much to do, so ended up watching a bit of daytime TV, OK it was pretty dull, but I couldn’t believe the number of these no win no fee type solicitors advertising on there alongside the usual fantastic latest products and loans of course.  It got me wondering how it all works, what they do and if we are now reaching the US style of compensation culture and how in turn that could further impact or own struggling economy.

It seems that broadly speaking there are six main categories for compensation claims, these are a trip, car accident, criminal injury, accident abroad, at work or medical negligence. The first 3 are aimed at other individuals, so in reality would not have any kind of impact on the economy, accident abroad, I can only guess would mean something which happened in another country on holiday or business and therefore would be claimed against an entity in that country. Which leaves the work accident and medical negligence.

Now I don’t want to get into the whole moral dilemma about this as yes it could be construed as an occupational hazard to lose the tip of your finger if you worked in a car manufacturing factory, however what if you lost a whole arm? and were unable to work for months and then when you were able to return to work couldn’t do the job you had trained for all and subsequently done for many years?

I suppose these kind of decisions come down to the individual and should be dictated more by a moral code than a sense of “what can I make from a situation”, although granted it’s completely open to abuse.

What happens when an unemployed, overweight person trips on the pavement after heavy frost and snow has left it damaged? Was it the fault of the council for not spending loads of money on sending an army of workers out to repair them the next morning?  Or was it the fault of the overweight person, perhaps if they weren’t they wouldn’t have fallen so badly, it really is a difficult one. But ultimately should our public money go to that person if they won the case? This is money which could have been spent on the NHS and schooling instead.

I know personally if I were to make a claim like this it would only ever be if the accident was serious enough that it incapacitated me and even then it would depend how seriously and who I was claiming against.  Don’t get me wrong, I would certainly claim if it were justified, just not if it wasn’t.

All this being said, I am no lawyer, so don’t take anything I have said here as advice, it’s just my usual chatter about a topic, possibly typing that little bit faster than my brain is going.
Please bear in mind I am not a solicitor, if you need legal advice after being involved in an accident get in touch with a specialist. It’s a good idea to try to find someone quite local so if you are in Wiltshire look for a Swindon solicitor or Cheltenham solicitor etc depending on your local large town, if however you are in Oxon you are best with someone more local so try to find an Oxford solicitor. It’s handy if you can find someone local to you as then you can pop in to discuss the details of the claim. Personal injury solicitors will be able to advise about accidents at work or clinical negligence too as they will usually cover a wide range of cases. Often on a no win no fee basis too.