What Is The Road Traffic Accident Claims Process?

By Richie Billing. Last Updated 22nd November 2023. This guide will explain what the road traffic accident claims process is. It will look at how you can make a personal injury claim if injured in a road traffic accident caused by a negligent third party.

Have you been injured because of a road traffic accident? The onus is generally on the claimant to prove that they were injured because there was a breach in the duty of care all road users have for each other. This duty comes from the Road Traffic Act 1988 or the Highway Code. When someone is injured in a road traffic accident injuries can vary. Severe injuries can consist of a head injury or a spinal injury.

Public Interest Lawyers can help you if you wish to make a road traffic accident claim. We can provide you with a knowledgeable personal injury lawyer to handle your claim. What’s more, your claim can be handled as a No Win No Fee case. This means that the No Win No Fee solicitors on our panel will not need to be paid until the case has resulted in compensation.

To begin your claim, please get in touch with us on 0800 408 7825. Alternatively, you can email us via our website.

Road traffic accident claims process

Road traffic accident claims process

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What Is The Road Traffic Accident Claims Process?

If you are involved in a road traffic accident that has caused you harm, you may be considering a personal injury claim if you suffered harm due to a negligent party. So the road traffic accident claims process we are talking about in this guide is about making a personal injury claim following the incident.

There is no legal requirement to have a solicitor represent your road traffic accident claim. However, they will have the knowledge and experience a case like yours may need. Once a claim is underway both sides will engage in the pre-action protocols. The purpose of enacting the pre-action protocols is to settle a claim early, avoiding court.

What Type Of Road Traffic Accidents Can You Claim For?

During the year ending June 2021, according to Government statistics, an estimated 1,390 people were killed on the roads of Great Britain. Moreover, an estimated 24,530 were killed or seriously injured during the same period.

You can claim compensation for the following types of road traffic accidents that were not your fault:

What is important to remember is that in order to have a valid claim for personal injury compensation after a road traffic accident your case must meet specific criteria.

Your case must show;

  1. You were owed a duty of care
  2. This duty was breached
  3. Negligence caused your injury that could have been avoided.

If you are unsure whether you are eligible for road traffic accident compensation call our advisors for some free advice. Through a consultation that holds no obligation, you can see what options are available to you.

What Happens When A Car Accident Claim Goes To Court?

Road traffic accidents will rarely go to court. This is because the process of a court case can be very expensive for all parties involved. It’s more common for both sides to reach an agreement before a claim ever reaches this point.

However, road accident claims can go to court if necessary. For example, if the other party is refusing liability. Both parties will make their cases for whoever they believe to be responsible for the injuries that have been sustained. A judge will then decide whether or not you are eligible to receive compensation based on the strength of the arguments.

Get in touch with our advisors to learn more about the road traffic accident claims process.

Tips for Navigating the Road Traffic Accident Claims Process

As part of the process of car accident claims or other types of road accident claims, you need to prove that your injury was caused by third-party negligence. Part of the claims process for a road traffic accident involves reviewing evidence. Evidence is crucial to illustrating how negligence resulted in your injury.

Our tips that can potentially help with collecting evidence include:

  • Seeing if there is CCTV footage of the incident. This could help illustrate the cause of the accident.
  • Collecting contact details of witnesses. At a later stage, your solicitor can contact them and take statements to help give your car accident claim a better chance of success.
  • Taking photographs of your injury and the accident site. This can help illustrate the extent of your injury and the cause of the accident.
  • Getting copies of doctor’s notes. If you seek medical attention, a medical professional will likely make a report about your injuries. This medical evidence can help detail how the injury has affected you.

Another aspect that could be important in a road accident injury claim is having an independent medical assessment of your injuries. A medical professional will review any injuries caused by the accident to determine aspects including prognosis, potential long-term effects, and the likelihood that your injuries were caused by the accident in question. A solicitor from our panel can help organise this meeting so that it is as local to you as possible.

To learn more, please contact us for legal advice that is completely free using the contact details above.

Traffic Accident Claims – Time Limits

As we have stated, in road traffic accident claims, you must be able to prove that you were injured due to another road user breaching their duty of care. However, you must also ensure that your claim is made within the relevant time limits, as stated in the Limitation Act 1980. When claiming for road traffic accidents, you generally have 3 years to start your claim. However, there are certain exceptions to this time limit, such as:

  • If your child was injured in a road traffic accident, they will have 3 years to start their claim from their 18th Before this point, the time limit is suspended, and a court-appointed litigation friend could make a claim on their behalf.
  • Someone who lacks the mental capacity to make a claim for themselves, will have 3 years to start a claim if they regain this mental capacity. Alternatively, a litigation friend could claim on their behalf.

Do not hesitate to contact one of our advisors today if you have any questions about the road traffic accident claims process. Our team is available 24/7 and could offer you free legal advice regarding your claim.

What Is The Whiplash Reform Programme?

The way certain road traffic accident claims are made in Wales and England has changed due to the introduction of the Whiplash Reform Programme (WRP). Under the WRP, you will now need to make your claim via a different avenue if the following applies to you:

  • You are aged 18 and over.
  • You were injured as a driver or passenger of a vehicle.
  • The injuries you suffered are valued at £5,000 or less, such as whiplash.

Additionally, your whiplash injuries will now be valued in accordance with the tariff set out in the Whiplash Injury Regulations 2021. These are fixed amounts, and you can find some examples of them in the compensation table featured in this guide. Furthermore, any additional injuries you suffered that are not covered by this tariff will be valued in the traditional way.

To find out which avenue you should take for your case, or to learn more about the car accident claims process, you can contact our advisory team.

What Damages Could I Receive?

If you make a claim for a road accident through the Government portal, your claim will be valued using a fixed tariff. This is coming from The Whiplash Reform Regulations 2021.

However, if your injuries are worth more than £5,000 or you are not a driver or passenger over 18 years of age your claim will be made the traditional way. This will mean that a publication by the Judicial College will be used to help put a value to your injuries.

We have created this table below using bracket amounts taken from this publication. These figures have been taken from the most up-to-date Judicial College guidelines (JCG), published in April 2022. As we have mentioned previously there are two main damages that you could claim: General and special damages. The table below looks specifically at general damages.

However, please be aware that the amount of compensation claimants receive for similar injuries varies depending on several factors. Also, be aware that the first entry in this table is an estimate figure that is not based on the JCG. Please feel free to call Public Interest Lawyers who can value your claim.

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Injury And Severity Description Amount
Multiple Serious Injuries Plus Special Damages You could be compensated for the pain and suffering caused by multiple serious injuries plus loss of earnings and any other relevant financial losses. Up to £500,000+
Severe Back Injuries (i) Back injuries causing damage to the spinal cord and nerve roots. £91,090 to £160,980
Moderate Back Injuries (i) A crush or compression fracture of the lumbar vertebrae. £27,760 to £38,780
Severe Neck Injuries (iii) Injuries resulting in a fracture, dislocation or similar soft tissue injury. £45,470 to £55,990
Moderate Neck Injuries (ii) A wrenching injury which may result in limited movement and cervical spondylosis. £13,740 to £24,990
Serious Leg Injuries (iii) Injuries to the ligaments or a serious compound/comminuted fracture that results in instability and requires prolonged treatment. £39,200 to £54,830
Less Severe Elbow Injuries Despite suffering from an impairment of function, the person will not require major surgery. £15,650 to £32,010
Moderate Knee Injuries (i) Wasting, weakness, and a minor instability caused by a dislocation or torn cartilage/meniscus. £14,840 to £26,190
Serious Shoulder Injuries Damage to the lower part of the lumbar vertebrae with a dislocated shoulder that causes neck and shoulder pain. £12,770 to £19,200
Arm Injuries Simple forearm fractures. £6,610 to £19,200
Whiplash Tariff The claimant has suffered a whiplash injury alongside a minor psychological injury with symptoms lasting 18-24 months. £4,345
Whiplash Tariff The claimant has suffered symptoms of whiplash for 18-24 months. £4,215

Successful claimants receive up to two heads of claim. These are general damages and special damages. General damages compensate the claimant for the pain, suffering and loss of amenity caused by their injuries. And special damages pay for anything the claimant may need because of their injuries. For example, special damages may pay for an operation the patient needs.

Special damages can include the following:

  • Medical expenses, including the cost of rehabilitation or surgery
  • Care expenses
  • Reimbursement for lost earnings
  • Travel expenses, such as the cost of hospital parking
  • Mobility equipment and home adaptation expenses

Road Traffic Accident Solicitor – No Win No Fee Claims

If you are pursuing a road accident injury claim, one of the solicitors on our panel could support you. The solicitors on our panel have years of experience handling various types of personal injury claims. Additionally, if one of them agrees to take on your case, they may offer their services under the terms of a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA). This is a type of No Win No Fee agreement.

When working with a No Win No Fee solicitor, you won’t be expected to pay any upfront or ongoing fees. If your road accident solicitor is successful with your claim, they will take a success fee from your compensation. The percentage they can take as a success fee is legally limited. However, should your claim not succeed, your solicitor won’t ask for payment for their services.

To discuss your personal injury claim today, contact our advisors. They’re available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, with free advice and help. If they think your claim is eligible, they could connect you with one of the No Win No Fee solicitors on our panel.

To speak with an advisor:

How Else Can We Help Victims Of Road Accidents?

We appreciate you taking the time to read our guide to claiming compensation for injuries caused by a traffic accident. Please feel free to read these related guides to learn more.

External guides;

We appreciate you taking the time to read our guide to the road traffic accident claims process. Please don’t hesitate to contact Public Interest Lawyers if you have any further questions.