What is a no win no fee agreement?
No Win No Fee agreements (also called Conditional Fee Agreements) cover your solicitor’s fees not only for accident compensation claims and medical negligence cases, allowing you to make your compensation claim without paying solicitor’s fees!
So if you have suffered an accident that wasn’t your fault, or been the victim of a medical mistake, you could be entitled to compensation. Our specialist team can see you at any one of our four offices in Salisbury, Andover, Fordingbridge and Amesbury.
We handle no win no fee claims for compensation claims locally in Wiltshire, Dorset, Hampshire and Somerset and throughout England and Wales. We also have interview facilities in West Dorset
How does no win no fee work?
If you win your case, your solicitor’s fees are paid by your opponent. However, under a No Win No Fee Agreement, if you lose your case through no fault of your own, your solicitor will not be paid. As your solicitors take a risk on winning your claim, they receive both their basic fees (at rates set by the County Court) and a success fee (an additional fee for taking the risk).
If your injury compensation claim goes to Court, our solicitors will advise you to take out ‘after the event’ insurance, which protects you from paying your opponent’s legal fees if your claim fails. This insurance premium is paid by your opponent at the end of your case if you win. If your compensation claim fails, the premium is not payable.
But my injury means I can’t travel
Don’t worry – we can come and see you. Home ab/or hospital visits are available for clients with serious injuries who are unable to travel. We also communicate with compensation claim clients using Skype or FaceTime – as well as email and phone.
No Win No Fee – For Other Compensation Claims too
Our solicitors also offer No Win No Fee agreements for appropriate
- Professional negligence cases.
- Contested wills claims
- Commercial litigation
- Employment claims worth £25,00 or more
There are rare occasions where you can be responsible for paying your solicitor’s fees in No Win No Fee claims. These can arise if you wish to change solicitors or fail to take action resulting in the loss of your compensation claim – for example if you fail to comply with a Court Order. However, follow our solicitors’ advice and you won’t get into this position!
Does No Win No Fee cover barrister’s fees?
Wherever possible, when we enter into a no fee agreement with our clients, we try to make sure that any barrister we appoint on your behalf does the same. And, if possible, we also try to get the barrister to limit their success fee to the % that we will charge you.
As a result, in virtually every no win no fee claim for personal injury or medical negligence that we run, that no win no fee agreement will also be extended to cover your barrister’s fees.
It’s worth noting, however, that not every compensation claim requires the advice and representation of a barrister. Many claims, especially simple ones, do not involve barristers.
Paying for third party costs
Disbursements are costs which your solicitor pays to third parties on your behalf in connection with your case as your accident compensation claim progresses – in accident compensation and medical negligence claims, these commonly include court fees and expert medical report.
Our personal injury and medical negligence solicitors can discuss how to fund these costs with you. However, when you take out a no win no fee arrangement with your solicitor, it is likely that they will advise you to take out an insurance policy as well. This is so you can cover any disbursements in the event of you losing your case. If you win the case, you can recover the cost of the insurance from the other party’s insurer.
Is legal aid still available for accident claims?
No – legal aid is no longer available for personal injury claims – though it is still available, in very limited circumstances for some birth injury medical negligence cases.
Time Limits in Making a Personal Injury Claim – Don’t Delay
If you are thinking of making a personal injury claim then don’t delay in seeking specialist legal advice. Any accident compensation claim involves strict time limits – if you delay making your claim, you may lose your right to claim compensation for your injury entirely.
The broad rule is that you must start your claim within 3 years of the accident or incident that caused your injury.
The most important limit is to start your claim within three years of discovering your injury . This doesn’t necessarily mean within three years of the your accident, as you may not always be immediately aware that something is wrong. For instance, if you are given a faulty hip implant, it might be some years before a problem becomes apparent.
- Injury Claims – 3 year time limits – exceptions
The 3 year limit starts from when you become aware of the injury. Not all personal injuries are immediately apparent.
For instance, an illness caused by your job might not become evident for some time. Issues such as faulty hip replacements can also take years to come to the surface and so you might not know straight away that you have a case for making a personal injury claim. In instances such as this, the 3 year time limit begins when you first become aware of the injury.
- Children who suffer a personal injury. The 3 year limit does not apply to any children wishing to make an injury claim until they are 18 – so if you are injured as a child, you have until you are 21 to make your claim.
- People who are mentally disabled and unable to claim in their own right; for them usually, the 3 year limit only applies when or if they fully recover from their disability. If you think this might apply to you or a close friend or family member, make sure you speak to a specialist personal injury claim solicitor as soon as possible.
Even though 3 years may sound a long time, it’s important to start your personal injury claim as soon as you can. Making your claim at an early stage helps the collection of evidence whilst it is still available, and taking statements from any witness while their evidence is still fresh in their mind.
Contact our No Win No Fee Solicitors as soon as possible
When it comes to making a compensation claim, it’s really important that you don’t delay getting expert legal advice.
Most accident compensation claims involve strict time limitations. You will often have as little as 3 years from the date of your accident to make your claim – and failing to make a claim within that period could mean you lose out on the right to claim compensation entirely. [ Please note, there are exceptions to the 3 year rule e.g. for children, those with a mental disability and those who weren’t originally aware of the injury when it was caused].
If you think you have an accident compensation or medical negligence claim, contact an expert No Win No Fee Solicitor in our Salisbury, Andover, Fordingbridge or Amesbury offices today.
What is Legal Expenses Insurance?
This kind of insurance is something that can help you fund your personal injury claim.
There are two main types of legal expenses insurance: before the event insurance and after the event insurance. They are very different.
- Legal expenses insurance- Before the event
As the name suggests, before the event legal expenses insurance is something that you take out to cover you in the event of something happening to you that means you need legal support. For instance, many people don’t realise that they often get BTE insurance when taking out a home insurance or car insurance policy. You can also purchase this kind of insurance separately from a range of financial institutions.
This type of policy usually runs for 12 months – and therefore is likely to need to be renewed each year. If you do need to use your BTE insurance forn a personal injury claim, you will need to inform your insurance company of the accuident within 6 months – and if possibley much sooner. There are also sometimes certain conditions limiting the use of BTE insurance; have a word with your personal injury solicitor if you are concerned or would like clarification.
- Legal expenses insurance – After the event
This is the other main type of legal expenses insurance, which you take out after your personal injury in the event of making a claim. This is often taken out in conjunction with a no win no fee arrangement, to cover your costs in case you lose your claim.
How much your ATE insurance will cost depends on certain factors, such as the chances of winning your case, whether you’re paying for the insurance up front or are waiting until after the result and how much compensation you’re claiming.
If you win your personal injury claim, you may be able to claim back the cost of your ATE insurance from the losing party’s insurers. If you lose the case then you won’t be able to claim back the cost, but the ATE insurance should cover you for any costs associated with the case (such as obtaining medical reports and other evidence).
It may all sound rather complicated – but that’s why our solicitors are here.
Using my insurance – Must I use the solicitor recommended by my insurance company?
In some personal injury cases, your claim may be covered by your legal expenses insurance. Under some legal expenses insurance policies, the insurance companies may try to insist that you use the solicitor they have selected – and they can be quite insistent on the point [often because they have come to special deals with some large firm of solicitors, where they pay a lower rate of costs but the legal work is largely done by cheap and unqualified staff].
However, you have the right to choose a solicitor to represent you under the Insurance Companies (Legal Expenses Insurance) Regulations 1990. The Insurance Ombudsman has interpreted the rules to mean that the insurance company doesn’t have to approve your choice of solicitor before proceedings commence.
In short, you have a right to choose the personal injury solicitor you want to represent you. You might decide that you are happy with the solicitor your insurance company has recommended but, if you aren’t, don’t worry about choosing another solicitor. For free initial phone advice, simply call our specialist personal injury team, who can help you with issues arising from your insurance policy.