Suffering a brain injury is something that many people fear, and until they are put in the situation where the injury has occurred, it may not be something that they have thought much about. But it’s more common than you might think – over 1 million people in the UK visit hospital emergency departments with head injuries, with more than 100,000 of these being admitted to hospital due to the severity of the injury.

Brain

When head injuries are serious, the risk is increased for a potentially life-changing brain injury; something truly no-one ever wants to face. But if you have suffered a brain injury, it could the case that you are owed compensation. It may be your legal right to claim, so let’s take a look at the details to see what your next steps should be.

Are you eligible to make a claim?

Many people unfortunately miss out on brain injury compensation because they are not aware of the law and their rights. But it’s actually the case that if you have suffered a brain injury and someone else is at least partly at fault, you can make a claim for compensation. Some claimants worry that if they are also partly to blame it will invalidate their claim, but this is not the case.

Take the example where you were in a traffic accident and suffered a brain injury as a result of someone crashing into you – it’s still possible to make a claim even if you weren’t wearing a seatbelt, however, you would have to accept that there would be a reduction in the damages that you would be awarded.

Are there time restrictions?

There are limits for when you can make a personal injury claim of any kind in the UK – legal proceedings must begin within three years from the date that you suffered the injury. However, there are a few circumstances when these restrictions do not apply. Firstly, if you have been unable to manage your own affairs under the Mental Capacity Act 2005 which can be quite common with brain injuries. In this case the person with the brain injury may not be able to bring a claim for a number of years.

The other exception is if you under the age of 18 when you suffer the injury. In this case, you will have until your 21st birthday to begin making a claim. However, it should be noted that if you are in a position to begin making a claim, there is usually no benefit in delaying.

How much compensation could you receive?

Just as with any kind of personal injury claim, the amount of compensation you can receive depends on the severity of the brain injury. Brain injuries can have truly life-changing consequences with some victims requiring critical or long-term care, in which it may be possible to claim compensation that reaches into hundreds of thousands of pounds.

Personal injury law

Naturally, less serious brain injuries will receive lower pay-outs. It will be up to your solicitor to gather the evidence to prove the extent of your injuries.

Choosing the right solicitor

Perhaps the most important part of the process is choosing the right solicitor to represent you. You need to make sure that you are selecting a solicitor that has specific experience in cases similar to yours. Take the time to select a solicitor that you trust and believe in – many firms will offer a free consultation on personal injury claims.

Making the wrong choice in solicitor can lead to you getting lower levels of compensation, so that is definitely a decision that you need to take seriously.

Paying the legal fees

Another worry for people who have suffered brain injuries is that they won’t be able to afford the legal help to make an effective claim. However, don’t let this put you off. Firstly, many solicitors are prepared to work on a ‘no win, no fee’ basis so that you will face no upfront fee and any costs will be paid by settling your case.

It may also be the case that you have a right to legal assistance. For example, if you are a member of a trade union group and were injured at work, they may cover some of your legal fees.

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