If you are thinking about making a claim following an accident, then you probably have many questions about the claims process. If you want to know more about compensation – such as how it is calculated and how it is awarded – then you will find invaluable information about this below, to help you better understand how the claims process works.
How is compensation calculated?
Personal injury compensation is calculated based on medical evidence, which should make clear the extent of your injuries, your recovery period and a prognosis for the future. To establish these facts, you will attend a medical examination. How your injuries have and will affect your life will be taken into account as well.
In addition to compensation for your pain and suffering, you can also claim compensation to recover any financial losses you have experienced as a direct or indirect by-product of your accident and injuries. This compensation is called ‘special damages’. You can claim back any provable loss of income, including overtime, and also relevant out of pocket expenses.
Your ‘Special damages’ and your ‘general damages’ will be added together to create a single settlement demand, which will be put forward to the other side. It is important to keep in mind, though, that your demand must be fair and proportionate to your injuries.
How is compensation awarded?
Once the other side accepts your claim, they will follow the terms as set out by your lawyers for compensation.
Usually, these terms stipulate that payment must be made within a week or two, or within a suitable timeframe. However, it is not always necessary for your lawyer or the law firm representing you to be in receipt of payment to provide you your compensation, because they will recover whatever they pay you from the payment that the other side makes.
Payment can be provided to you by way of cheque or by BACS. All you have to do is tell your solicitor which payment you prefer. Once you receive your payment, your agreement and your claim is effectively completed, leaving you to enjoy your compensation.
How will my lawyer be paid?
Your personal injury lawyer will cover their costs in one of two ways. They will either recover their costs from the other side, leaving you with 100 per cent of your compensation, or they will take a percentage of your compensation as payment. By law, that percentage can be no more than 25 per cent of the total claim value. So if you are awarded £10,000, your solicitor can take no more than £2,500 as payment to cover their fees. Some lawyers are able to reduce the percentage they take, by recovering some costs from the other side.