How to Make a Personal Injury Claim as a Freelancer
Personal injury claims have gained far greater exposure in recent years and hundreds of thousands of people are making claims in the UK every year. As freelancers, it is extremely important to understand your rights in case you suffer an injury whilst at work. This page will provide you with a simple overview of how to make a personal injury claim.
Do you Have a Personal Injury Claim?
Generally, the best way that you can establish whether or not you have the right to make a personal injury claim is to determine how you have been affected by the incident and who is responsible for the injuries. A few questions to ask yourself are:
- Has your quality of life changed for the worse?
- Has your ability to work been affected?
- Have you incurred some form of financial loss due to the accident?
- Is someone else responsible for the accident which caused your injury?
Making a Claim as a Freelancer
The types of situations which could lead to freelancers making injury claims vary largely depending on their field of work. For example, a freelance photographer could slip on a wet floor at a wedding venue, whereas a copywriter who works from home isn’t likely to have such an accident. Therefore, it is essential that if you have any form of accident, you identify who is at fault for your injuries. In the instance of the photographer who slips on a wet floor, it would be the manager of the venue who is at fault as they have neglected to follow a few simple health and safety guidelines.
Choosing a Personal Injury Solicitor
The first step in the injury claims process is to find a good personal injury solicitor. Some parts of personal injury law are quite complex and a specialist solicitor may be required, medical negligence is a prime example of this. As a result, it is vital that you hire the right personal injury solicitor for your case. A few questions you can ask a solicitor are:
- How much trial experience do they have? – A number of solicitors have never had to go to court as the majority of claims are settled before it ever gets that far. However, just in case your claim does go to court, it is useful to have a solicitor who has experience in such an environment.
- How much compensation would they expect you to receive? – Each solicitor will most likely have a different opinion of how much compensation they believe you could be entitled to, so make sure you ask any potential solicitor how much they think you could claim for.
- Do they operate on a ‘no win, no fee’ basis? – If possible, it is best to get a solicitor who operates on a no win, no fee basis as this means that you won’t have to pay them a penny if they fail to win the case. However, you may still be liable for the other side’s legal costs, but this could be covered by an insurance policy.
Once you have hired a personal injury solicitor and decided that you want to go ahead with the claims process, your solicitor will write a letter of claim to the other side (person at fault for your injuries) notifying them of your decision to make a claim for compensation. They will have three months to respond to this initial contact and either accept or reject fault for your injuries. If they choose to accept fault, a settlement will be negotiated by your solicitor, but should they reject fault and both parties are unable to come to an agreement, the case will go to court. If you win your claim, you will receive the agreed compensation amount but if you lose, you will receive no compensation and may have costs to pay which could be covered by an insurance policy as mentioned earlier.
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