The main steps in a personal injury claim

Filing for a personal injury claim is something that, naturally, you will want expert help with.

Regarding the process of a personal injury claim, clients often wonder what the main steps are.

The claim process, in England and Wales, can be found below:

  1. Claimant endures an injury and consults a solicitor.
  2. Claimant and solicitor will then agree on a Letter of Engagement thus setting out the terms which the solicitor can act on.
  3. Solicitor will identify the defendant(s), compile important information relating to the claim, as well as make the necessary preparation for a Letter of Claim (in accordance with the Pre-Action Protocol for Personal Injury Claim)
  4. Letter of Claim will be sent to the defendant who is obliged to acknowledge it within 3 weeks. Following that, the defendant will then have just 3 months to investigate the claim.
  • If the defendant admits all liability, the parties will discuss the damage etc and work towards settling the case.
  • In the event of the defendant denying liability, or admits to only partial liability (possibly alleging contributory negligence), both parties will review the damage(s) and liability in an attempt to settle the case – however, ordinarily the claimant is to only discuss settlement following a disclosure of evidence from the defendant.
  • It should be noted that either party is allowed to make a Part 36 Offer under Civil Procedure Rules: i) if the Part 36 Offer is accepted, or the parties settle the amount of damage that has been caused, the case will end and the defendant will have to pay the claimant in the manner agreed in the settlement, ii) however, if the Part 36 Offer is not accepted or the parties are otherwise unable to agree on liability as well as the damage,t he claimant will likely notify the solicitor to go ahead and issue court proceedings.
  1. The claimant’s solicitor would issue the proceedings (often with a medical report and special damages calculations)
  2. The claimant’s solicitor or court serves proceedings on the defendant (this has to be within 4 months of the issuance of proceedings)
  3. The case will proceed in accordance with the court’s case management procedures
  • If the case happens to be settled before the trial, the dispute will cease and the defendant will need to pay the claimant in the manner agreed in the settlement
  • In the outcome that the parties do not settle the dispute, the case will proceed to trial in order to determine liability and the damage(s)
  1. The court will then issue a judgement on the liability and the damages
  2. If the defendant is found liable, they are obliged to pay the claimant damages following the court’s order

Both claimant and defendant work can be covered in personal injury claims by Chartlands Chambers.

All about Family Law

Family law covers a wide range of legal topics that can includes any issues revolving around marriage and children.

family law Northampton
Unhappy with their arguments

Common family law subjects include annulment or divorce, child custody and visitation rights, child support payments and spousal support/alimony. The specifics of family law and children involve a child’s adoption, state child protection and guardianship, along with restraining orders and domestic violence for adults.

Is there a difference between divorce and annulment?

Both are matters of court and essentially dissolve a marriage. Yet, annulment does differ from divorce as it treats the marriage as something that did not happen. However, the majority marriages are often ended through divorce.

How will child custody and visitation rights established?

If the court is deciding visitation rights between parents, the decision will conclude with what is in the child’s best interest.

What covers child support?

Child support will be the amount of money that the law asks a parent to pay to the spouse who is primarily responsible for the child. Child support will cover the cost of any educational expenditures, food, shelter, clothing, health and medical care.

Will I need a family attorney?

It is advised to consult with a family attorney if you do not understand any court processes that are involved in family law. A family attorney will be able to explain anything you may not understand as well as explaining your rights and protect your interests in the case.

For further information about family law Northampton services, please visit the website.

What do I need to make a personal injury claim?

In order to make a personal injury claim, a variety of documents will be needed.

However, the documents needed generally vary on the circumstances for the individual case.

Evidence requirements for an accident claim

Once you have decided on your solicitor, at the outset of your claim, they will explain the documents you will need to produce to support your claim. You will be known as the Claimant (the party that is bringing the claim) meaning you will need to prove it with a sufficient amount of evidence showing who is to be held liable.

Below we will discuss the required documents at the outset of a compensation claim.

Evidence and documents required at the outset

The documents needed will relate to identification and funding issues. With regards to money laundering regulations, your solicitor may request identification documents at the outset of your claim thus enabling your solicitor to comply with certain regulations and open up your file correctly.

The initial matter that will be discussed between you and your solicitor will be how you, as the Claimant, intend to fund your claim. Following this, you may be asked to provide copies of insurance policies you have which may include, motor or household insurance – these will be checked in order to see if you’ve acquired pre-existing legal expense insurance which may be able to assist with the funding of your claim.

Proving liability

Prior to deciding whether you’d like to proceed with your claim, your solicitor will assess your chances of success. To do this, your solicitor will require:

– Any written reports covering any details and/or specifics about the accident i.e. where the accident happened; if any police attended etc.
– Documentation you have from any witnesses
– Photos from the location of the accident
– Photos of your injuries

These types of documents may also be required a little later on through your claim if liability becomes an issue. Under these particular circumstances you will be asked to provide the other party’s insurance company with further documentation and evidence. Varying on the type of accident, this may involve:

– Accident in the workplace – specifications of damaged machinery that is responsible for the accident
– Industrial disease – any medical evidence that presents the cause of the industrial disease and how it links to the company responsible
– Road traffic accident – sketch plan of position of vehicles and any photos of the road markings
– Trip or slip – Photos that capture a raised paving slab or any other tripping hazard that is responsible for your fall

Photographic evidence

It will be useful for you to take photos of your injuries as these will help with the value of your claim. This is a crucial step if you have come out on an accident with scarring.

Log the events

It is advised to log the events that occurred, recalling everything from the circumstances that lead up to the accident (regarding a road traffic accident, the4 weather conditions, visibility levels and the speed/flow of the traffic) to the events that immediately followed the accident (conversations with witnesses, calls made to and from your GP and/or insurance companies, conversation with the other party/employers).

Make note of family and friends who had helped you if you were in the hospital; who visited and what assistance you needed from them etc.

For further information on personal injury law and personal injury Northampton, please visit our website.

 

Civil litigation attorney

A civil litigation attorney is quite a versatile term that describes a type of lawyer who specialises in matters that aren’t essentially related to the criminal justice system.

Civil litigation lawyers’ roles don’t cover the defence of a person who had been charged with driving under the influence or had been arrested for theft.
They rather deal with matters that outline medical malpractice, personal injury, employment discrimination and civil rights. It is possible they may handle business cases, such as contract disputes, real estate matters, or in disputes that may involve partners in a corporation.

Those attorneys that specialise in civil litigation will need to prepare for every aspect of a trial in the civil court system.
Their role may involve interviewing clients and predicting the scope of the case and lawsuit purpose. The role would also include the preparation of petitions, or formal paperwork commencing a lawsuit.
Once the lawsuit has been prepared, civil litigation attorneys would then have the responsibility of discovery of information, or gathering information which involves compiling documents, taking the testimony outside of court and requesting information from the other party, or their attorney.

Civil litigation attorneys will also represent their clients along with the party they are suing.
Throughout the trial, the attorney will represent the client and may potentially work on their behalf to negotiate a settlement between parties.

Please visit the website for further information about civil litigation Northampton and other solutions we can provide for you.

Personal injury law

Each year sees over three million people injured in accidents, at home, work, while driving, or outdoors.

A majority of cases include the fault from someone else, this would give the victim of the accident the right to compensation.

With the help of personal injury solicitor, the process of making a claim can be much more simple. They will remain by your side during the deals made with insurance companies to make sure your individual circumstances are fully taken into account.

Making the claim

The initial step will cover sending a claim letter to the person/people or company that you are individually holding responsible for your accident (the defendant). This letter will entail a detailed account of your injury and the events.

The defendant must then reply to that letter within a fixed period of time (approximately between three months, however in many cases the time will be much shorter.)
Their letter should state whether they accept or deny liability for your injury.
If the case is accepted, your solicitor will aid in settling the matter in court.

Making the offer

Your solicitor should be able to quote to your the value of your claim and may ask you the amount of compensation that you would be willing to accept, also whether you would be willing to make an ‘offer to settle’ (Part 36 offer.)
You should be advised by your solicitor about a Part 36 offer and how it will affect you

Settling matters in court

If matters cannot be settled in court, there should be a discussion between yourself and your solicitor involving legal action and if it would be best to take it.

What your solicitor will need

In order for the details of your case to established, your solicitor will need to be given the following information:

– the date of the accident
– the contact details for any possible witnesses
– a detailed account of your injuries, medical diagnosis and the treatment you received
-evidence whether you are a member of the trade union or have any legal expenses insurance policies, as this may entitle you to a free legal representation or one with a significantly reduced cost

Your solicitor may also need access to:

– proof of the earnings you lost and/or any other financial expenses that are due to the injury
– any documents that relate to any insurance policies you have aka household insurance or motor insurance, to check if these could cover any costs of your claim
– any evidence that could be used to support your claim, this could include documents prior to the accident or previous accidents with similar circumstances

Further information about our personal injury law service can be found on our website.

 

What is the difference between a barrister and a solicitor?

The difference between a barrister and a solicitor is mainly where the work is carried out.

A barrister’s main role is to defend people in the court whereas a solicitor will perform the legal work outside of court.

The Solicitor

Once it is said that someone is seeing their lawyer, it will usually be a solicitor they contact.
A solicitor will have specialist knowledge in these areas of law: family, crimes, finance, property and employment.
It is possible for solicitors to work for a variety of large organisations, no matter is they are commercial or not, such as law firms, private businesses, banks, the government and corporations.

Solicitors will likely advise their clients, undertake negotiations and will draft any legal documents. The role of a solicitor is mainly a desk job, however it does involve a lot of travelling to see the clients and represent them in court.

The Barrister

The way to distinguish a barrister from a solicitor would be to look out for them in court; they’ll be wearing a wig and a gown.
Barristers work at a higher level of the court than the solicitor, they will act as advocated in hearings, pleading the case for their clients before the judge.

Barristers won’t come into as much contact with the public than a solicitor would, instead, they would liaise with the solicitor to review the evidence and given a certain amount of time to do so in preparation for what is going to be said in court.

Training

Considering the contrast between the role of each, their training would begin the same: either complete and undergraduate course in law or opt for another degree and follow is with the one-year Common Professional Exam or Post-Graduate Diploma in Law.

After that, a solicitor will do a one-year Legal Practice Course and proceed to do a two-year training contract.
A barrister, on the other hand, will take a one-year Bar Professional Training Course, which will see then shadowing senior barristers and undertaking some of their own court work.

For more information about barristers and solicitors, along with the law services we can offer, please visit our website.

Civil Litigation: What is it?

What is civil litigation?
Civil litigation is the term used for a legal dispute that has occurred involving two or more parties seeking money damages or a specific performance, in comparison to criminal sanctions.
Litigators are what are known as the lawyers that specialise in civil litigation, and lawyers who practice civil litigation will represent the parties in hearings, trials, arbitrations and mediations before foreign tribunals, administrative agencies, federal, state and local courts.

The types of civil litigation

An extensive amount of conflicts can be encompassed into civil litigation.
Litigators will usually specialise in a couple of the specific areas.

Several of the common types of litigation include:

– Anti-Trust
– Construction
– Education Law
– Employment & Labor
– Environmental Law
– Intellectual Property
– Landlord/Tenant
– Medical Malpractice
– Personal Injury
– Products Liability
– Real Estate
– Worker’s Compensation

Civil litigation skills

To be able to proceed with litigation practice, there are a certain set of specific legal skills a person must acquire, including:

– Ability to synthesise complex legal and factual materials
– Analytical reasoning abilities as well as logical
– Client development skills
– Knowledge of legal research techniques and software
– Knowledge of substantive and procedural law
– Negotiation skills
– Strong advocacy skills, both written and oral
– Superior social skills

The role played

Being a litigator is a challenging role, as one must be prepared to assume an oppositional position and embody conflict and controversy.

The process

There are seven stages of the litigation process: investigation, pleadings, discovery, pre-trial, trial, settlement and appeal.
However, not every lawsuit will pass through each of the stages of the litigation; in many cases, lawsuits have been settled prior to the upcoming trial and those that do reach the verdict of the trial are not appealed afterwards.

Complex civil litigation will take years to pass from pre-suit investigation through trial/settlement.
The stage of discovery is the longest stage of civil litigation, not a lot of time is spent in trial, most is actually devoted to the discovery stage in the litigation process.

For more information on our civil litigation services and more, click here.