In this guide, we will discuss when you could seek compensation for nerve damage after a car accident. You may also be wondering how compensation is calculated in road traffic accident claims, or how to prove your claim. We will explain the steps you can take to collect evidence, as well as how solicitors value settlement awards.
Road users, such as drivers, riders and pedestrians, owe each other a duty of care. If another road user fails to fulfil this duty, resulting in an accident that causes you to suffer from nerve damage, then you may be able to make a road traffic accident claim. However, your claim could be affected by the Whiplash Reform Programme. We will discuss the changes brought in by the programme, and how they could affect your case later on in this article.
Our advisors are on hand if you would like to learn more about the road traffic accident claims process. Through a free consultation, an advisor from our team could provide you with legal advice and guidance surrounding the claims process. If they find your claim to be valid, then they may also put you in contact with one of our road traffic accident solicitors. To get started:
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- When Could You Claim Compensation For Nerve Damage After A Car Accident?
- Car Accidents Which Could Cause Nerve Damage
- How Do You Prove Negligence In A Road Accident Claim?
- How Much Compensation Do You Get For A Road Accident?
- Get Help Claiming Compensation For Nerve Damage After A Car Accident?
- Learn More About Nerve Damage Injury Claims
If you have been involved in a car accident and have suffered nerve damage as a result, you may be wondering when you could make a claim. In order to form the basis of a valid claim, you have to be able to prove that:
- You were owed a duty of care
- This duty was breached
- This breach resulted in you suffering harm. This is known as negligence for which you could be eligible to start a road traffic accident claim.
As we’ve already mentioned, you are owed a duty of care by other road users. This is set out by the Road Traffic Act 1988, which states that you have a duty to reduce the risk to others when using the road. The Highway Code also outlines the responsibilities that all road users have, including pedestrians.
The Whiplash Reform Program
The Whiplash Reform Programme came into force on May 31st 2021. It brought in changes that state any driver or passenger aged 18 or over with injuries worth £5,000 or under must make their claim through the government’s Official Injury Claim portal. Whiplash injuries are valued according to the tariff set out in the Whiplash Injury Regulations 2021.
If you have injuries valued over £5,000 you will make your claim in the traditional way. However, even if you do not have to make your claim through the government’s official portal, any whiplash injuries you sustain will still be valued in line with the tariff. For example, if you sustain a back injury worth over £5,000 along with whiplash injuries, then your back injury will be valued in the traditional manner, whereas your whiplash injuries will still be valued through the tariff.
Limitation Periods For Whiplash And Road Traffic Accident Claims
If you’re eligible to claim compensation for nerve damage after a car accident, you would typically have a limited time to do so. Under the Limitation Act 1980, there is a three-year time limit to claim personal injury compensation. The limitation period usually begins on the date of the accident.
However, there are some exceptions that might apply to your case. For example, if a child suffers nerve damage from a car accident, they would only be able to begin their claim once they reach 18 years of age. They would have three years from their 18th birthday to file their claim. However, during the period before they reach 18, an appropriate adult could apply to be a litigation friend and handle the claim on their behalf instead.
Similarly, if a person lacks the mental capacity to claim for themselves, a litigation friend could act for them and bring a claim on their behalf. The limitation period would be frozen indefinitely in such cases.
To learn more about limitation periods, or making a claim on behalf of someone else, please contact an advisor.
Car accidents can occur in a number of ways. However, as we have already mentioned above, your accident must be caused by another road user’s negligence in order to claim. Some examples of how negligence could contribute to an accident on the road include:
- If another driver crashes into the back of your car because they did not keep the correct stopping distance due to using their phone while driving, this could cause a head injury. This could lead to cranial nerve damage resulting in paralysis of the facial muscles or loss of sensation in the face.
- If you are stopped at a junction and a car speeds through a red light, causing a T-bone accident, this can cause paralysis or a spinal injury that could result in other forms of nerve damage.
- If another car is speeding and hits your car, this can cause a leg fracture. Severe leg fractures can lead to nerve damage, such as in the case of a crush injury.
Contact our advisors today to find out if your claim could be valid. They can offer free legal advice, and more help surrounding the steps you could take after being injured.
One important step in the claims process is collecting evidence. This can help you prove fault in a car accident claim including proving that the harm you sustained was a result of another road user not upholding their duty of care. Some examples of evidence that you could gather include:
- CCTV footage: If a CCTV camera caught the accident, you may be able to request the footage to submit as evidence.
- Witness contact details: Collecting the details of witnesses means their statements can be taken at a later date.
- Dashcam footage: If you or the other driver had a dashcam installed, the footage from this camera could be used as evidence.
- Police reports: In some circumstances, you may have to report your accident to the police. In this case, this report can later be used as evidence in your claim.
One of our solicitors could help you gather evidence to help strengthen your road traffic accident claim. Contact our team today to learn more.
There are two potential heads of claim that you could receive if your road accident claim succeeds: general damages, and special damages. General damages are the head of claim that addresses the injuries you sustain as a result of the accident, and the pain and suffering these injuries cause.
Often, solicitors will use the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG) to help them value general damages. The JCG provides a list of injuries along with guideline compensation brackets that legal professionals can refer to when calculating settlements. Below, you can find some examples of these brackets.
Whilst the figures from the JCG are to be used as a guide only, the last two entries are taken from the tariff in the Whiplash Injury Regulations 2021 and are fixed amounts.
|Guideline Compensation Bracket
|Severe Back Injuries (a) (i)
|£91,090 – £160,980
|The most severe injury involving a damaged spinal cord and nerve roots, with consequences not normally seen in back injuries.
|Severe Back Injuries (a) (ii)
|£74,160 – £88,430
|Injuries in this bracket have features such as nerve root damage with mobility impairment, sensation loss, and unsightly scarring.
|Severe Shoulder Injury (a)
|£19,200 – £48,030
|Neck injuries involving damage to the brachial plexus causing significant disability.
|Less Serious Leg Injuries (c) (i)
|£17,960 – £27,760
|Fractures resulting in an incomplete recovery or serious soft tissue injuries that result in nerve damage in the lower limbs.
|Serious Injury to the Thumb (t)
|£12,590 – £16,760
|Injuries can involve serious fractures, amputation of the tip, or nerve damage.
|Moderate Injury to the Thumb (u)
|£9,670 – £12,590
|Injuries that cause damage to the tendons or nerves that lead to impaired sensation, function and cosmetic deformity.
|Fractures of the Nose or Nasal Complex (c) (i)
|£10,640 – £23,130
|Serious fractures that require multiple operations. It may also result in nerve damage and difficulty breathing as well as other issues.
|One or More Whiplash Injuries
|Symptoms last between 18-24 months.
|One or More Whiplash Injuries With One Or More Minor Psychological Injuries
|Symptoms last between 18-24 months.
How Special Damages Could Also Compensate You
Special damages are the head of claim that covers the financial impact of your injuries. For example, under special damages, you could potentially claim back the cost of:
- Damage to your car
- Medical bills or prescriptions
- Cosmetic aids or surgery
- Domestic help
In order to claim back these losses, you should provide evidence. As such, it can be helpful to collect receipts, bills, and invoices related to the accident. To learn more about how much compensation for nerve damage after a car accident you could receive, get in touch with our team.
You may find it beneficial to work with one of our solicitors when claiming compensation for injuries sustained in a road accident. They can offer services such as helping you gather evidence and ensuring you put forward a complete claim. Additionally, they can offer their services under a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA), which is a type of No Win No Fee arrangement.
By entering into a CFA, you can access their services typically without having to pay them an upfront fee.Likewise, you generally do not have to pay any ongoing fees to your solicitor as your case progresses.
Should your claim be successful, then your solicitor will receive a small percentage of your compensation. However, this percentage has a legislative cap. This makes sure that you keep the majority of what you receive. Plus, if your claim fails, you won’t pay this fee.
How To Get In Touch With Our Team About Nerve Damage Car Accident Claims
To find out whether you could be eligible to work with one of our solicitors, you can get in touch with an advisor. They can also discuss when you could be eligible to claim and provide an estimate of how much you could be awarded if you succeed. For free legal advice 24/7, you can:
For more helpful articles surrounding road traffic accident claims:
- How Much Are Claims For Tinnitus After A Car Accident Worth?
- Am I Eligible To Claim Compensation After A Car Accident Caused By Ice Or Snow?
- Faulty Traffic Light Accident Claims
Or, for further resources:
To learn more about claiming compensation for nerve damage after a car accident, contact our team today.