May 22, 2015

Can I Sue the NHS for Negligence

The above is a daunting and difficult question. However, the simple answer is yes …possibly!

There are a few important factors you should consider before making a medical negligence claim. Firstly, and most importantly, is to establish whether your circumstances and the medical issue you’ve experienced are sufficient for actual grounds for negligence, or simply to make a complaint.

The NHS has well-established complaints procedures that are designed to resolve NHS negligence claim issues quickly and efficiently and to identify faults in procedures and make recommendations to put them right. All NHS complaints are dealt with by the NHS Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS). The PALS charter is not responsible for disciplining or dismissing medical practitioners, or for deciding on or awarding compensation.

Basically, if your issue is less about wanting to sue the NHS for medical negligence and more about being dissatisfied with general procedures and looking to highlight issues to be improved upon, then the PALS procedure is probably the best route for you. They could deal with outcomes such as an admission and an apology,

However, if you believe that you have suffered injury, pain or loss due to a specific act of a medical practitioner or the general level of care received, then you may have cause for a clinical negligence claim against the NHS. If you believe that you deserve compensation for the negligent act and its impact on your health and wellbeing, then you need to seek advice on making a medical negligence claim.

 

How would I claim against the NHS?

In seeking to establish the validity of a medical negligence claim against the NHS, your NHS Negligence Solicitor will look to establish two key factors:

– Firstly, was your Doctor, Nurse or medical team at fault to the extent that they did not provide a level of service and care equal to what would be expected of another professional in their field?

– Secondly, did you suffer actual harm, injury or loss as a direct result of this lack of care? This can take various forms, but must be recognisable and defined.

One other thing to consider is the Limitation Act 1980. This is basically a legal time limit, which means that a claim must be commenced within 36 months (3 years) of the injury or harm having occurred. There are exceptions to this rule and limitation is a complex area of law, so your best step is to contact an expert Medical Negligence Solicitor and enlist their specific legal advice on this subject and your current legal options.

Via a free initial consultation, one of our expert NHS Negligence Solicitors will help to explore your current evidence in order to establish whether the above conditions are met. If they think that your case meets the above criteria, and that you have a reasonable chance of making a successful claim, then we may agree to take on your case.

 

How would I finance my compensation claim against the NHS?

The bad news is that legal aid funding for medical negligence was withdrawn as part of the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012, removing this funding option in all but a very limited number of cases involving specific injuries to children during pregnancy, birth and the initial post-natal period.

The good news, however. is that there are a large number of Medical Negligence Solicitors who are able to take on cases across the UK on a No Win, No Fee basis. Such compensation claims are usually taken on under what’s called a Conditional Fee Agreement, or CFA. This, in simple terms, means that if the claim is not successful, the Solicitors will not charge any fee. In the event of a successful claim a Success Fee would be charged.

With regards to an NHS negligence claim, the success fee would be defined as a percentage of the final compensation awarded. This percentage would have been previously agreed upon within the terms of the CFA, meaning that from the first step of your decision to make a compensation claim against the NHS, you know exactly where you stand in financial terms.

There are also other financial considerations to be made that your NHS Negligence Solicitor should advise you of, such as whether you will need ATE (After the Event) Insurance. In some cases, a claimant would actually be liable to pay the defendants costs in the event of an unsuccessful claim. ATE Insurance covers your costs in these circumstances, ensuring that you are not left in a difficult financial predicament.

 

BLD — Specialist Professional and Medical Negligence Solicitors

Here at Been Let Down (BLD for short), we have a proven track record of many years of winning medical negligence claims against the NHS for our clients. Whether you’re ready to begin your compensation claim against the NHS, or simply want to ask advice on how to sue a doctor, we can offer you helpful and trusted legal advice via a free no-obligation consultation meeting with one of our clinical negligence team.

Due to our experience and the detailed and specialist knowledge we have accumulated in this field, we know that our NHS Negligence Solicitors not only provide excellent legal care, but can also beat the terms offered for Success fees and ATE Insurance by other Solicitors. What’s more, unlike with many other legal firms in this field, here at BLD you will always be speaking to an Experienced NHS Negligence Lawyer from the very first day you contact us.

Been Let Down ensure that any time anyone approaches us for advice on making a clinical negligence claim against the NHS, we will listen sensitively to all details of your legal circumstances. Once our NHS Negligence Solicitor has heard these details, we will be able to advise on whether we think you have grounds and a reasonable chance of success for a compensation claim against the NHS.

If we determine that you do have grounds for an NHS negligence claim, then we will most likely offer to take on representation of your claim on a No Win No Fee Basis. To find out more about whether you qualify, just give us a call on our freephone number, or fill in our quick initial claim form on our website Contact section.

Once you’ve been in touch, one of our experienced NHS Negligence Solicitors will call you back promptly in order to discuss the details of your case further. All of our initial consultations are totally Free and offered on a No-Obligation Basis. Contact us at Been Let Down today and let us help you get the compensation that you deserve.

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