Car Accident Claims Guide – How Much Can I Claim?

By Jo Anderson. Last Updated 2nd February 2023. This guide will discuss car accident claims, including when you could be eligible to seek car accident compensation and examples of the evidence you could gather to support your case.

Furthermore, we look at the duty of care road users, including drivers, owe one another and how a breach of this duty could lead to a car accident and subsequent injuries. 

You might be wondering “What is the average payout for a car accident in the UK?”. It can be difficult to provide an average as settlements differ depending on the unique circumstances of each case. However, we have provided information on how compensation payouts are calculated and what they could include following a successful claim. 

Finally, we discuss how a No Win No Fee solicitor could assist you in seeking compensation and the terms under which they offer their services.

To learn more, read on or contact an advisor to check your eligibility to claim with one of our No Win No Fee solicitors.

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A man who has just had a car accident and wants to make a claim

Choose a Section

  1. How Much Compensation For A Car Accident You Could Receive
  2. Will The Whiplash Reforms Affect Car Accident Claims?
  3. Am I Eligible To Claim For A Car Accident?
  4. Evidence To Help Support Car Accident Claims
  5. Time Limits For A Car Accident Settlement
  6. Claiming Compensation For A Car Accident With A No Win No Fee Solicitor
  7. Helpful Links Relating To Car Accident Claims

How Much Compensation For A Car Accident You Could Receive

If your car accident claim for an injury you suffered is successful, your settlement may consist of two heads of claim. These are called general and special damages.

General damages compensate for the physical pain and mental suffering caused by your injury. To help when valuing car accident claims, legal professionals may refer to the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG). This document lists guideline compensation brackets for different types of injuries.

In our table below, we’ve listed a few figures from the 16th edition of the JCG. It is only to be used as guidance. It should also be noted that the first entry has not been taken from the JCG.

Injury Compensation Bracket Guidelines Comments
Multiple severe injuries with financial costs Up to £250,000+ Settlements comprising compensation for a multitude of severe injuries alongside financial losses including care costs, loss of income and medical costs, for example.
Back injuries – Severe (i) £91,090 to £160,980 The most severe cases are those whereby there is disability and severe pain. This includes nerve root and spinal cord damage.
Back injuries – Moderate (i) £27,760 to £38,780 This includes injuries such as muscle and ligament disturbance, and those of residual disability of a lesser extent.
Neck injuries – Severe (i) In the region of £148,330 The biggest payout is for severe cases, like incomplete paraplegia, or where the claimant still has little to no movement despite wearing a collar or brace for near 24 hours per day.
Neck injuries – Moderate (i) £24,990 to £38,490 This includes cases whereby existing injuries have been made worse, as well as dislocations and fractures.
Pelvic injuries (a) Severe (i) £78,400 to £130,930 Extensive fractures, dislocations of lower back and bladder future could be included here.
Arm injuries (c) Less severe £19,200 to £39,170 A substantial degree of recovery will occur, despite injuries that cause significant disabilities.
Hand injury (g) Less serious £14,450 to £29,000 Severe crush injuries for example, which result in significantly impacted function, despite or without surgery
One or More Whiplash Injuries with One or More Minor Psychological Injuries £4,345 Symptoms lasting 18-24 months.
One or Multiple Whiplash Injuries £4,215 Symptoms lasting 18-24 months.

If you would like to know how much compensation for a car accident you could get, please get in touch with a team member for a free valuation of your claim.

Car Crash Compensation – What Are Special Damages?

In addition to general damages, your car crash compensation may also include special damages. This is to compensate you for any financial losses caused by your injuries.

Examples of special damages you might be able to recover as part of a personal injury claim include:

  • Loss of earnings if you’ve required time off work to recover from your injuries.
  • Travel expenses. For example, taxi fares to attend medical appointments.
  • Medical costs, such as the costs of prescriptions and physical therapy.
  • The cost of adaptations to your accommodation. For example, if you need railings to help cope with your injuries, the costs of installing these could be recovered.

To include special damages as part of your claim, you should submit proof of your costs. For example, receipts and invoices.

To discuss what your compensation for a car accident may include, please get in touch with an advisor from our team.

Will The Whiplash Reforms Affect Car Accident Claims?

The Whiplash Reform Programme implemented changes to the way certain road traffic accident claims are made. As such, if you are an adult passenger or driver of a vehicle and you sustained injuries valued at £5,000 or more, you may need to direct your claim via a different avenue.

Also, any whiplash injuries will now be valued in accordance with the tariff set out in the Whiplash Injury Regulations 2021. This tariff is fixed. However, if you have any injuries not included in the whiplash tariff, these will be valued in the traditional way. 

If the total value of your claim comes over £5,000, you will claim via the traditional route. However, any whiplash injuries will still be valued via the fixed tariff.

For further guidance on seeking car accident compensation for whiplash, please get in touch with an advisor using the number above.

Am I Eligible To Claim For A Car Accident?

Not everyone who suffers a car accident injury would be eligible to claim compensation. This is because your claim must meet certain criteria in order to be valid, which means you have to prove that:

  1. You were owed a duty of care
  2. This duty was breached
  3. You were injured as a result

Every road user has a legal responsibility towards other road users to navigate the roads in a way that prevents harm to themselves and others. Part of this duty is following the Road Traffic Act 1988 and the mandatory steps outlined in the Highway Code.

If a road user causes an accident by breaching this duty of care; for example, because they were speeding, driving carelessly, or failing to stop at a red light, this could cause a road traffic accident. If you were injured in a collision caused by another road user failing to fulfil their duty of care, you may be able to claim.

To check your eligibility to claim, or find out more about car accident compensation claims, please contact an advisor.

Evidence To Help Support Car Accident Claims

If you’ve suffered an injury from a car accident and would like to start a personal injury claim, you will need to be able to provide evidence. Collecting sufficient evidence could help with proving how the accident occurred, who was liable, and the types of injuries you suffered.

Some examples of evidence that you could use in a personal injury claim for a car accident include:

  • Police reports: If someone was injured and property was damaged, you must report the accident to the police within 24 hours. Police reports can then be used as evidence in your claim.
  • Medical records: Your medical records, along with any X-rays, scans, or tests, can be used to illustrate the severity of your injuries, as well as the treatment you will need and the time it will take for you to recover.
  • CCTV or dashcam footage: Footage of the accident from a CCTV camera or dashcam can also be used to help support your claim and pinpoint who was at fault.
  • Photographs: Pictures of the accident site and of your injuries can be used to strengthen your claim.

One of our solicitors could help you gather evidence and further strengthen your claim. To find out if you could be eligible to work with one of our solicitors, or to find out more about the car accident claims process, contact our team today.

Time Limits For A Car Accident Settlement

The Limitation Act 1980 sets a typical limitation period of three years for car accident claims. This means that you would usually have three years from the date of the accident to file your claim for compensation.

However, there are some exceptions that may apply to certain cases.

For example, if a child under the age of 18 is injured in a car accident, they would not be able to make a claim until they reach the age of 18. This means that the limitation period would pause until their 18th birthday. However, during the time it is paused, an appropriate adult could act as a litigation friend on the child’s behalf. They could file a claim at any time until the child reaches 18.

If no claim was made for them, and the child then reaches adulthood, they would have three years from the date of their 18th birthday in which to file a claim.

There are also some exceptions that apply to people without the mental capacity to make their own claim. In such cases, the limitation period would freeze. Again, a litigation friend could act on the injured party’s behalf while the limitation period is frozen. However, if no claim is made, and the person regains their mental capacity, they would have three years from the date of their recovery to claim.

To learn more about how long you might have to claim for a car accident injury, please contact an advisor.

Claiming Compensation For A Car Accident With A No Win No Fee Solicitor

Now we have provided insight into car accident compensation amounts, and discussed who could be eligible to make a personal injury claim, you might want to instruct legal help.

Getting help from a solicitor when making a car accident compensation claim can be beneficial. Your solicitor could assist you in gathering evidence to support your case and could negotiate with the liable party for a compensation payout.

One of our solicitors may offer to take on your claim under a No Win No Fee arrangement, such as a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA). If so, you typically won’t have to pay them for their work upfront or throughout the course of your claim. Additionally, you will not have to pay them for their legal services if the claim fails.

Under a CFA, your solicitor would take a small, legally capped percentage of your compensation as their success fee if your claim is successful.

To find out if one of our No Win No Fee solicitors could assist you or to ask questions such as “What is the average payout for a car accident in the UK?”, please contact an advisor by:

Helpful Links Relating To Car Accident Claims

We’ve also included links to some of our most popular personal injury and accident claims guides which you may find useful:

We hope this guide on car accident claims has been useful and you have a greater understanding of this type of claim. Now we’ve given you some insight into the average payout for a car accident in the UK, you might be wanting to make a car accident injury claim with our car crash compensation claim solicitors. If so, you’re welcome to contact Accident Claims today using the contact details found in this car crash compensation guide.