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FAQ On Road Traffic Accident Claims

Learn about making a personal injury claim for a road traffic accident. 

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£70 million in compensation

Won for our clients by JF Law Solicitors

FAQ On Road Traffic Accident Claims

Learn how to claim personal injury compensation for a road traffic accident. 

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In this guide, you can find answers to commonly asked questions relating to road traffic accident claims. 

If you’d like to get help over the phone now or via our live chat, we can help with that. 

Our team of advisors offer a free initial review of road traffic accident compensation claims where you can discuss your options and find out whether you’re eligible to proceed. They can also answer your questions and offer free advice. To reach them, you can:

What Is A Road Traffic Accident?

A road traffic accident refers to a collision on the road with another road user, like a vehicle, cyclist or pedestrian. 

Some road collisions must be reported to the police, such as when there is an injury or if the other driver flees the scene.

Can I Claim For A Road Traffic Accident?

Road users owe a duty of care to prevent injury or damage from being sustained by themselves and others when they use the roads. This duty can be upheld by adhering to the Highway Code and the Road Traffic Act 1988.

You could be entitled to claim compensation for a personal injury following a road traffic accident if:

  • You were owed a duty of care by another road user.
  • The other road user breached their duty of care.
  • You suffered injuries as a result of the breach.

For example, you might suffer a serious neck injury in a rear end collision because another driver was using their phone while operating their vehicle and not paying attention to the road in front. In this instance, it might be possible to make a car accident claim for the injuries you sustained.

Can I Claim If I Was Partially At Fault?

There may be cases where both parties are each partially liable for a road traffic accident. In this instance, a split liability claim could be made. As such, you could still seek compensation, but the amount you receive would be reduced according to how at fault for the accident you were.

For more information on split liability claims as well as the eligibility criteria for road traffic accident claims, please get in touch with an advisor on the number above.

What Evidence Will I Need For My Road Traffic Accident Claim?

Evidence can help support road traffic accident claims by showing another road user was at least partially responsible for your accident and injuries.

The types of evidence you could use to make your claim stronger include:

  • Dashcam footage of the accident (from your vehicle or that of a witness).
  • Details about any medical treatment you received.
  • Contact information from any potential witnesses in case statements are needed later on.
  • Photographs of the accident scene, vehicle damage and any visible injuries.

If you choose to instruct a solicitor, they can help you gather evidence to support your case. Our solicitors have experience with handling claims for a road traffic accident, including cycle accident claims, motorbike accident claims, and claims involving uninsured or untraceable drivers. Call an advisor on the number above to learn more about how they could assist you in seeking compensation.

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Are There Time Limits For Road Traffic Accident Claims?

Personal injury claims generally have a 3-year time limit. This is set out in the Limitation Act 1980 and means you typically have three years to start legal proceedings from the accident date. However, there are some exceptions to the limitation period. They include:

  • Where a child is injured, their time limit doesn’t start until their 18th birthday. If no claim has been started for them before this point, they will have three years to initiate legal proceedings themselves from when they turn 18.
  • Where the party has a reduced mental capacity to deal with a claim, the time limit is paused indefinitely. If the person recovers their capacity, they’ll have three years from the recovery date provided no claim has already been made for them.

In both scenarios, a family member, friend or responsible adult could become a litigation friend to manage the claims process on the claimant’s behalf while the time limit is paused.

For further guidance on the time limits for road traffic accident claims, please contact an advisor on the number above.

Can I Claim If The Other Driver Is Uninsured Or Didn't Stop?

If you are involved in an accident with an uninsured or untraceable driver, such as a hit and run accident, there is still an avenue you can take to seek compensation.

The Motor Insurers’ Bureau (MIB) helps those injured in road accidents where normal routes to seeking compensation are unavailable. However, the eligibility criteria mentioned above still needs to be met.

If you’d like one of our solicitors to help you make a road traffic accident claim through the MIB, please call today to see if your case is valid.

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How Much Compensation For A Road Traffic Accident Could I Receive?

Settlements awarded in successful road traffic accident claims can comprise up to two heads of loss. The first, general damages, covers pain and suffering caused by the injuries sustained, physical and/or psychological. The second head of loss, special damages may also form part of your payout. This covers financial losses linked to your injuries such as lost earnings, care costs and medical expenses.

To establish how much general damages you might be awarded, reference can be made to your medical records as well as the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG).

The JCG lists several guideline compensation brackets for a range of injuries that could potentially be suffered in a road traffic accident.

How Is Compensated Calculated And Is There An Average Payout?

It’s important to note that there isn’t an average payout for a road traffic accident claim.

Each case is unique, with injuries impacting people and their lives in different ways. To ensure fairness, each claim is calcuated individually, though the process is the same.

The first step is to assess the severity of the injuries and how they’ve affected your life. It’s also important to work out if the effects will be permanent, and if not, how long it will take you to recover. 

The more severe and impactful the injuries, the higher the compensation calculation.

Our table uses figures from the latest edition of the JCG. However, please remember that the amounts are guidelines only.

The first entry is not from the JCG. Additionally, the last two amounts are fixed tariff amounts from the Whiplash Injury Regulations 2021. These are used to value whiplash injuries.

InjurySeverityCompensation Bracket GuidelinesExtra Information
Multiple severe injuries with special damagesSevereUp to £1,000,000 and aboveCompensation for several injuries of a severe nature alongside financial losses incurred, such as lost income, care costs, and medical expenses.
Brain InjuryVery Severe£344,150 to £493,000Life expectancy, degree of insight, the extent of any physical limitations, and the ability to communicate and other factors will all be considered when determining the award given for cases in this bracket.
Moderately Severe £267,340 to £344,150 Similar factors to the bracket above will be considered when valuing the award given for cases.
Neck Severe (i)Around £181,020 Cases of a neck injury resulting in permanent spastic quadriparesis or associated with incomplete paraplegia.
Moderate (i)£30,500 to £46,970 Includes dislocations or fractures that result in severe immediate symptoms and could require spinal fusion.
Back Severe (i)£111,150 to £196,450
Severe disability and pain from the most serious back injuries involving spinal cord or nerve root damage.
Moderate (i)£33,880 to £47,320An example of an injury in this bracket is damage to an intervertebral disc with nerve root irritation as well as reduced mobility.
PelvisSevere (i)£95,680 to £159,770 Extensive pelvis fractures involving a dislocated low back joint along with a ruptured bladder.
Moderate (i)£32,450 to £47,810
Significant pelvis or hip injury. There is no permanent disability and the future risk of this isn’t great.

Your settlement amount may also include compensation for any financial losses you suffered because of the injury. For example, if you had to pay for repairs to your car, you can claim this back. You can also claim back money lost taking time off work to recover. 

How Much Can I Claim For Whiplash?

The way in which certain road traffic accident claims are made have changed. Since the Whiplash Reform Programme was introduced, passengers and drivers of vehicles with injuries valued at £5,000 or less must proceed down a different avenue to the normal claims process. Also, any whiplash injuries sustained will be valued in accordance with the fixed tariff detailed in the Whiplash Injury Regulations 2021.

If your claim is valued at more than £5,000, the normal claims process will apply. This may be the case if you have sustained more than one injury for example. If this is the case, your other injuries will be valued in the normal way but the fixed tariff will still be applied to any whiplash injuries.

To see how the new whiplash reforms might apply to your road traffic accident claim, please call our team today.

How Long Does A Road Traffic Accident Claim Take To Settle?

A road traffic accident claim can take differing lengths of time to settle depending on the facts of the case.

If the injuries suffered heal quickly and the defendant admits liability without delay, the claim could be resolved in a few months. 

If the injuries suffered are serious and will take time to heal, or if the defendant disputes they were responsible, the claim could take longer. 

Who Pays Compensation In A Road Traffic Accident Claim?

In road traffic accident claims, compensation is usually paid by the insurance company of the driver responsible. 

In cases where the driver cannot be found, a claim can be made against the Motor Insurers’ Bureau (MIB), who will pay compensation at the same rate. 

In cases where the cause of the accident was the poor quality of the road, such as a deep pothole, the local council or highways agency could be responsible. Compensation would be paid by their insurers too.

Can I Claim For A Road Traffic Accident On A No Win No Fee Basis?

If you instruct one of our expert solicitors who has experience of handling road traffic accident claims, they could make the process of seeking compensation easier. Some of the ways they could help you include:

  • Collecting supporting evidence for your claim.
  • Sending correspondence on your behalf.
  • Sending you updates on the progress of your case regularly.
  • Valuing your case.

Importantly, our solicitors offer a No Win No Fee service. They do so by working under a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA). Typically, this means you don’t pay for your solicitor’s work in advance or during the claims process. You also won’t need to pay for any of your solicitor’s services if the claim fails.

There will be a success fee deducted from the compensation you are awarded. This success fee is a legally capped percentage ensuring you still keep the majority of your settlement.

To find out if you could make a No Win No Fee road traffic accident claim, please:

More Resources About Road Traffic Accident Claims

Here are a few more of our guides about road traffic accident claims:

Finally, we’ve linked to some external guides that might also help:

If you’d like more information on road traffic accident claims, please call our team today.

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