In this blog Mark Slater, a renowned Clinical Negligence expert with an outstanding reputation for excellence, explains how clinical negligence compensation is calculated. Throughout his career he has not only achieved millions of pounds in damages for clients but also secured those vital packages of treatment and rehabilitation that are crucial to his clients’ recoveries, improving their quality of life and longer term prospects. His depth and breadth of knowledge much sought after by peers and clients alike.
The level of damages awarded by the Court is determined by reference to two things:
- The extent of pain suffering and general impact on your life; and
- The extent of financial losses that are linked to those injuries
That is how we reach the level of compensation. There are guides for judges as to what level of damages certain types of injury attract but they are supplemented by past decisions of the Court. In clinical negligence cases the level of injury is not always easy to determine as some of the residual problems may have been there even with good care.
This means that it is not usually possible to give people any accurate picture as to how much a case is worth until we have investigated. If someone suffers a nasty leg fracture that would always have left long term pain or problems and also received negligent care for the fracture, it is only the additional injury that the compensation is for. Not the whole. This is very different to an injury at work or in a car accident where the injuries are usually clearly linked to the event that starts the case.
The financial impact of the injuries
Working out the financial impact of the injuries is also complicated and varies on a case to case basis. Examples of common losses that can be included would be lost income due to time off work; the cost of care and services needed during any rehabilitation; and the costs of looking after children whilst someone is in hospital and unable to look after them. This is only a very limited snapshot of what can be included and a specialist lawyer explores this with each client to make sure all losses that can be linked are claimed.
What if a settlement cannot be reached?
The final decision on compensation always lies with a judge if settlement cannot be reached. Because of this there is a broad range of possible outcomes. No two cases are the same, so there is no ready reckoner that lawyers can use to give an initial guide on this.
If you are affected by any of the issues outlined here, please get in touch today. We are here to help you.