How long a road traffic accident takes can depend on several factors. The main thing to take into consideration is the severity of your injuries and the treatment you require. You will receive a prognosis from a specialist during your claim and you may either choose to settle within this period or wait until the prognosis period has lapsed.
If you wait until the prognosis period has lapsed to ensure your injuries have fully healed, you may require another examination if you decide to further extend your claim. With so many factors involved in how long a road traffic accident claim can take, it can vary the claim period from a few months for less severe injuries, to several years in more extreme circumstances where you have life-changing injuries which require ongoing care.
Being involved in a road traffic accident can be very upsetting and confusing for everyone involved, thankfully IMS Law have helped thousands of clients to claim compensation.
With more than 165,000 road traffic casualties reported in the UK last year alone, we caught up with Litigation Executive, Kim Hatton, to find out more about what you should do following a road traffic accident and how IMS Law can help.
So, what should someone do after a road traffic accident?
Kim: Immediately after a car accident people find it hard to think straight. There are however a few helpful steps you should take, such as:
- Take the full name and address of the driver/s of the other vehicle/s involved
- If possible take photos of the scene of the accident, the other vehicle/s involved including the damage sustained (showing the vehicle registration plate/s)
- If an injury has occurred, report the incident to the police as soon as possible
- Report the matter to your insurers as soon as possible
- Obtain names and addresses of witnesses if possible
- Check to see if any of the driver/s or witnesses have a dash camera which recorded the accident
- Keep full details of losses and expenses incurred as a result of the accident – keeping receipts where possible
- Seek immediate medical attention if necessary
You are legally obligated to inform your insurance company when you’ve been involved in an accident. However do not be pressured into utilising their own legal services, you are entitled to choose your own representative to act on your behalf and that’s where IMS can help.
What types of road traffic accident claims are there?
Kim: At IMS we have experience in every type of road traffic accident claim. We’ve helped passengers in a vehicle at fault, made children’s claims, claims against uninsured drivers, acted on behalf of passengers on a bus or coach, motorbike claims, pedestrian claims, passengers in a taxi, and multiple vehicle accidents to name just a few.
It isn’t common knowledge that if a child is involved in a road traffic accident, their parent or guardian can pursue a compensation claim on their behalf and act as the Litigation Friend.
Can someone claim compensation from an uninsured or untraced driver?
Kim: Yes, IMS can make a claim for you through the Motor Insurers Bureau (MIB) under the Uninsured or Untraced Drivers Agreement.
IMS will then liaise with the Motor Insurers Bureau on your behalf to ensure the best possible outcome for you.
How long does someone have to make a claim after a road traffic accident?
Kim: The general rule for adults who are considering making a claim for personal injury compensation is that you have three years from the date of the accident to start the claims process.
If a claim has not been settled or Court Proceedings have not been issued by the 3rd anniversary of the accident, your claim may be considered ‘time-barred’ leaving you ineligible for compensation.
The rules for children who have sustained injury as a result of an accident are slightly different to that of an adult. The three-year time limit still applies, however a child has three years from the date of their 18th birthday in which to process a claim.
Therefore a claim processed after the date of a child’s 18th birthday must have either settled or Court proceedings issued before they reach their 21st birthday.
Again their claim may be considered ‘time-barred’ leaving them ineligible for compensation if either of the above have not been completed.
How much compensation do people usually receive after a car accident?
Kim: The amount can vary depending on the circumstances and the level of injuries sustained.
It also depends on the length of time in which you suffer from the injuries. This includes the extent of the treatment you require, such as taking medication to control pain and discomfort, the impact the injuries have had on your everyday life and your ability to work.
At IMS our personal injury team will be able to give you a valuation of your claim once we have received completed medical evidence.
How are road traffic accident cases funded?
Kim: At IMS our road traffic accident claims are funded on a no win, no fee basis. This is known as a ‘conditional fee agreement.’
The benefit of a no win, no fee agreement is that there are no financial risks to you. You do not have to pay any upfront costs to start a claim and are only required to contribute towards legal fees if your claim is successful.
If your claim is unsuccessful, you will not have to pay us anything.
If we are successful in securing you compensation, the contribution you make is capped at 25% from the amount you receive. We always explain the funding arrangements during our initial consultation before anyone enters into any arrangements with us.
If you’ve been involved in a road traffic accident contact IMS Law now to begin your compensation claim.