A Guide On Suing The Council For Uneven Pavement Accidents

By Cat Gengar. Last Updated 9th June 2022. If you’re looking into suing the council for uneven pavement that has caused you to be injured, you may have questions that this guide can help answer. Such questions include, “how do I make a claim for pavement tripping?” and “on what grounds can you sue the council?”. This guide will explain the necessary steps for making a claim and confirm the types of evidence you could provide to support a claim. 

A guide on suing the council for uneven pavement

A guide on suing the council for uneven pavement injuries

Our advisors are available 24/7 and offer free legal advice so, if you have any queries about making a personal injury claim, you can contact us at any time that works for you. They can also put you through to a No Win No Fee personal injury solicitor from our panel who can help build your case. 

Please remember that you’re under no obligation to use our services should you contact us. To find out if you’re eligible, contact us using the details below. 

  • Call us using 0800 408 7825
  • Contact us through our website.
  • Please write to us using the Live Chat window on your screen

Please read on to learn more about claiming against the council for a public slip, trip or fall caused by uneven pavement. 

Select A Section

  1. Suing The Council For Uneven Pavement Accidents
  2. Who Is Responsible For Repairing Pavements?
  3. Where Do I Report Uneven, Broken And Damaged Pavements?
  4. How Long Do Councils Have To Repair Uneven Pavements?
  5. How To Sue The Council For Negligence
  6. Valuing Council Compensation Payouts
  7. Talk To A Solicitor About Your Case
  8. Learn More About Council And Local Authority Injury Claims

Suing The Council Uneven Pavement Accidents 

You may be able to sue the council for an accident caused by an uneven pavement if it occurred because they breached their duty of care to you. All parties in control of public spaces owe a duty of care to those who use the space for the intended purpose. In Wales and England, this duty of care is detailed in the Occupiers’ Liability Act 1957

You can claim for a wide range of injuries, from relatively minor ones like cuts and lacerations to more severe and potentially life-changing injuries like brain damage. There are three basic principles you need to prove to claim compensation for an injury. They are: 

  1. That the third party had a duty of care
  2. That their actions breached this duty of care
  3. Finally, that these actions led to your injury

It’s important to note that, while there is no legal restriction for a trip hazard in the UK. However, a council will usually not consider public liability claims for a trip hazard that is less than 1 inch. 

To learn more about this, please refer to our advisors, who offer free legal advice 24/7. They can be contacted using the details above. 

Who Is Responsible For Repairing Pavements? 

An important part of claiming for any injury caused by uneven pavement, such as a soft tissue injury, sprain or strain, is determining liability. As we’ve already mentioned, the person in control of a public space has a duty of care to members of the public who use the space. 

In many cases, maintaining and repairing pavements and roads will be the responsibility of the local council. The Highways Act 1980 gave responsibility for maintaining and repairing to local authorities in most circumstances.

However, there are situations where another party might be responsible for maintaining or repairing pavement. These include places like outdoor shopping centres with paved paths.

It’s understandable to consider this if you’re interested in suing the council for uneven pavement, as you want to ensure you’re claiming against the right third party. Whoever is liable for the upkeep of pavements will be the third party you need to claim against. 

For more information on whether you have a valid claim, speak to a member of our claims team today.

Where Do I Report Uneven, Broken And Damaged Pavements? 

If you notice a broken or uneven pavement, you may want to report this to your local council. By doing so, you give them an opportunity to repair the

You can report it online using the Government’s online portal. There is a checker tool that involves inputting the postcode of the relevant area. Once the local council has been located using the tool, you can inform them of the defective area. 

To claim compensation, you would need to show that they were either informed of the defect and failed to do anything about it, or they weren’t aware of it but should have been (for example, if they missed an inspection that would have drawn this to their attention). 

Tripping on an uneven paving stone could cause you to sustain a serious injury, such as a head injury, back injury or broken forearm, that you may be able to claim for. We’ll go into more detail below, or you can get in touch with our team today for more information.  

What is the Council’s Responsibility for Pavements?

When suing the council for negligence, you must prove that the council failed to uphold the duty of care they owed you causing you harm. For example, the council may have been unaware of the pavement defect when it was reasonable to expect that they should have been i.e. by carrying out regular risk assessments. As a result, you may have experienced a broken ankle and damage to your face after tripping over a pavement the council was responsible for.

Ultimately, local councils have a time period within which to fix pavement defects. This time period can change from council to council. As such, suing the council for negligence could be possible if you can show the council didn’t fix the defect within a reasonable length of time, resulting in your injury.

However, if you can prove that the council caused you to sustain harm after they failed to uphold their responsibility to do everything reasonably possible to protect your safety, you may be able to claim compensation for their negligence. To learn more about the claims process and the potential council compensation payouts you could receive, please contact us for free legal advice using the details above.

How To Sue The Council For Negligence

An important part of suing the council for damages following an accident that has caused you harm is proving third-party negligence. If you cannot prove that a third party was at fault, then it is unlikely that you will be able to make a claim for compensation.

Some of the steps you could take to strengthen your claim when suing the council for negligence can include:

  • Medical attention: If you have been injured due to tripping over uneven payment, we recommend you seek medical attention as soon as possible. Not only does this ensure that your injuries get treated properly, but any notes or reports made by a medical professional could then be used to help prove your injuries.
  • CCTV: If there was CCTV in the area where your accident occurred, you can request copies of the footage. This could help prove that the council had responsibility for the pavements in that area but were neglecting their duties and could also demonstrate how the accident happened.
  • Witness details: Collecting witness details can be helpful when suing the council, as it ensures that their statements can be taken by a legal professional later on during your claim.

For more information on how you can strengthen your claim, or to find out how one of the solicitors on our panel can help you, contact our advisors today.

Valuing Council Compensation Payouts

You may be wondering, “what is the average payout for a slip and fall in the UK?”. Whether you’re suing the council for an uneven pavement accident or claiming for another type of accident, one of the things that will be considered is the extent of the injury and how it has negatively impacted you. 

Therefore, there are two potential heads of claim. Firstly, general damages relate to the physical and psychological pain and suffering caused by the injury. Furthermore, special damages relate to the financial losses sustained because of it. For instance, you may be unable to work due to an injury. As part of the claim, you may be able to receive the earnings you’ve lost as a result. 

Work from the Judicial College can help give you a greater indication of the value of general damages you could receive in a claim. They analyse previous payouts, comparing them to the severity of the respective injuries. The figures below have been taken from the sixteenth edition of the Guidelines, published in 2022, to make sure we give you the most up-to-date information.

Injury TypeSeverityBracket of CompensationDescription
AnkleVery Severe£50,060 to £69,700Injuries might include a transmalleolar ankle fracture that leads to deformity and extensive soft tissue damage.
AnkleSevere£31,310 to £50,060Extensive treatment is required that could require pins and plaster being inserted with a significant disability caused.
AnkleModestUp to £13,740Injuries in this bracket might include minor, undisplaced fractures, ligamentous tears and sprains.
Achilles TendonModerate£12,590 to £21,070Partial rupture or a significant tendon injury.
FootSevere£41,970 to £70,030Fractures to both feet or heels leading to a substantial mobility restriction.
FootModerate£13,740 to £24,990Metatarsal fractures that are displaced leading to permanent deformity and ongoing symptoms.
ToeSevere£13,740 to £21,070Severe crush injuries that could lead to partial amputation of one or two toes (that aren’t the great toe).
ToeModerateUp to £9,600These toe injuries can include those that exacerbate a pre-existing degenerative condition.
BackModerate (i)£27,760 to £38,780Examples of injuries in this bracket include a prolapsed intervertebral disc that requires surgery or intervertebral disc damage leading to reduced mobility.
BackModerate (ii)£12,510 to £27,760Soft tissue injuries that lead to the exacerbation of an ongoing back problem, normally by five years or more.

In order to value the general damages head of your claim, you’ll attend a medical appointment with an independent expert. They’ll examine your injuries and compile their findings into a report. The results from this report will be used to value the general damages head of your claim.

Talk To A Solicitor About Your Case

A personal injury solicitor from our panel could work your case on a No Win No Fee basis. With a No Win No Fee agreement, this means that you won’t be asked to pay your solicitor anything upfront or while the claim is ongoing. 

They also won’t ask you for any payment in the event that your claim is unsuccessful. If your claim succeeds, then they’ll deduct a legally-capped success fee from your compensation award.

Our advisors are available 24/7 to offer you free legal advice. In just one phone call, they could confirm if you’re eligible to claim compensation.

Furthermore, they can answer questions you have about suing the council for uneven pavement and even put you through to a specialised No Win No Fee personal injury solicitor from our panel. 

Please contact us at a time that works for you using the details below:

  • Call us using 0800 408 7825
  • Contact us through our website.
  • Please write to us using the Live Chat window on your screen

Learn More About Council And Local Authority Injury Claims

The Compensation Recovery Unit (CRU) retrieve benefit payments from claimants in Great Britain once their compensation claim has been successful. To see statistics regarding this, please refer to their website. 

Please refer to this NHS web page if you’ve suffered a broken ankle and would like medical guidance. 

Would you like to know more about how to make a general complaint against your local council? If so, please refer to this Government webpage. 

To know more about claiming from public highway accidents, please read this page on our website. 

You may be able to claim if you’ve been injured from a road defect. Read this guide to learn more. 

Would you like to know more about claiming for an accident in a public school? If so, read this article on our website. 

If you’d like to know more about suing the council for uneven pavement, please contact our advisors for free legal advice using the details above. 

Article by AU

Edited by ET