Losing a limb is devastating and life changing, with profound consequences for you and your loved ones. Where you suffered an amputation due to medical negligence, it is understandable to be angry, confused and very upset, especially where you believe the amputation could have been avoided with proper medical care.
More most people, claiming compensation is the only way to deal with the consequences of an amputation due to medical negligence, including paying for private healthcare, high quality prosthetics, counselling and other forms of support, as well as replacing lost income. Making a compensation can also be the best way of getting answers about what went wrong.
The thought of making an amputation compensation claim might be intimidating at this already difficult time, but with the right legal advice and support, the process can be kept much simpler and less stressful than you might assume. We strongly recommend speaking to an expert medical negligence lawyer as soon as possible to give you the best chance of a successful claim.
Why choose Devonalds for your amputation claim?
We are extremely proud of the strong connection we have with our local community. Most of our team were born and bred in the Rhondda Cynon Taff area, where we have advised and represented individuals and families for more than three decades on a wide range of medical negligence matters.
Our team will be more than happy to answer any questions you have about your claim in plain English and will provide you with a personal service tailored to your requirements. As well as helping you with making a claim, we can also advise you on the various types of support that are available to you, including rehabilitation services and charities.
We have a close working relationship with some of the UK’s leading prosthetic rehabilitation specialists.
We appreciate that many people are put off by the potential time, effort, stress and cost involved in dealing with court proceedings, but our team will always strive to settle your amputation claim out-of-court wherever possible. If it’s not possible to reach a settlement by using methods of Alternative Dispute Resolution or negotiation, we can use our strong litigation skills to represent you in court while making sure you have close personal support through every stage of proceedings.
Speak to us today about starting an amputation claim
For a friendly, informal discussion about whether you or a loved one are entitled to make a claim for loss of limb compensation in South Wales, please contact your local Devonalds team in Bridgend, Pontypridd, Talbot Green, Tonypandy, Treorchy or Tylorstown.
How claiming compensation for an amputation works
Starting a claim for an amputation
Before you consider starting an amputation claim, we will be happy to advise you on the process, including how your case is likely to unfold, the timeframes, your relative chance of success and what will be included. If you have lost a limb as the result of medical negligence, then our solicitors can inform you if you are entitled to compensation.
We can run through all of this information with you during a free initial consultation in which will detail all of the available options. This session is simply intended to give you a better understanding of your case and you will be under no pressure to pursue a claim with us.
No win, no fee amputation claims
The majority of medical negligence claims we deal with are funded using a ‘conditional fee agreement’. This is more commonly referred to as a ‘no win, no fee’ deal, which means our fees will only apply if we are successful in claiming compensation on your behalf.
There are no upfront fees and, if your claim is unsuccessful you will not owe us anything. There is also a possibility that the other side will pay for your legal fees if we are successful in claiming compensation.
Proving your amputation was caused by medical negligence
When pursuing any claim, we will need to prove that the level of care you received fell below the expected standards and directly resulted in your amputation. To prove that your amputation was caused by medical negligence, we will typically rely on various types of evidence, including:
- Medical records such as risk assessments
- Testimony from independent medical experts
- Witness testimony
Our medical negligence lawyers will use their expertise to effectively gather this information, presenting it in a way which will maximise your chances of reaching a positive outcome for your amputation claim.
Valuing your amputation claim
The process of calculating how much compensation you will entitled to is referred to as ‘assessing quantum’ or ‘assessing quantum of damages’. This will involve an overview of the ways your amputation has impacted your life, both financial and non-financial.
Loss of limb compensation claims can cover a wide range of issues, including:
- The cost of medical treatment, specialist care & equipment
- Lost income if you need to take time off or give up work
- Pain and suffering
- Travel costs and other expenses
- Loss of amenity i.e. not being able to carry out activities you/your loved one would otherwise have enjoyed
- Providing for your/your loved one’s future financial independence
Time limits for amputation claims
The standard time limit for any amputation claim is three years from the date the amputation occurred. However, there may be certain exceptions where different time limits apply.
If you are claiming on behalf of someone who is under 18, then you will have until their 18th birthday to bring forward a claim. They will then have until they are 21 to pursue their claim further if it is necessary to do so.
If you are making a claim for someone who has died as a result of amputation negligence, then you will usually have three years from their date of death. Typically, there is no time limit in place if you are making a claim for someone who lack the mental capacity to do so themselves.
If you are still unsure about how long you have to make a claim, don’t hesitate to get in touch with a member of our team today.
Reaching an out of court settlement
We will always aim to resolve your claim out of court, using our expertise in methods of negotiation and Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR). If you are able to reach a settlement out of court, you’ll save yourself plenty of time and stress, and can help you to access funds much quicker.
Taking a claim to court
If we are unable to resolve your amputation claim out of court, then you can be assured that we have the strong litigation skills needed to represent you during your hearing.
We will be with you every step of the way, working alongside you to prepare an effective case that gives you the best possible chance of achieving your desired outcome. Our team will work with you to keep the process as clear and transparent as possible, informing you about the progress of your case at every stage.
Managing compensation for an amputation claim
Amputation claims can result in significant compensation being awarded, so it’s vital that you carefully manage these funds to meet your long-term needs.
Receiving compensation can have an effect on your ability to claim for means-tested benefits, so we can advise you on placing funds into a personal trust which allows you to ring-fence your money without affecting your access to certain benefits.
Common questions about amputation claims
How long does it take to get compensation?
You can be assured that we will strive you get you the compensation you deserve as quickly as possible, but you should be aware that complex cases can take several years to resolve. We will make you aware if this is likely to be the case, taking your individual circumstances into consideration.
As mentioned, a settlement can be reached quicker if court proceedings are not required, which is why we aim to resolve cases out of court. If you are in urgent need of funds to meet your short-term needs, then we can help to arrange interim payments while your case is still ongoing.
How do interim payments work?
If the healthcare provider responsible for your amputation has admitted liability, but you are still waiting for your case to be resolved, it may be possible to arrange interim payments.
Interim payments can also apply in situations where the exact level of compensation you are due to receive has not yet been decided. The payments will give you access to the treatment you need without being compromised by a lack of funds.
Can I claim for someone who has died after an amputation?
Yes. If a loved one has died as a result of an amputation caused by medical negligence, then you will be able to claim compensation if you were a dependent of theirs. If you are eligible, you will have three years from the date of their death to bring forward a claim.
Will I get an apology?
We appreciate how important it is to have the mistakes in your care acknowledged so we will always strive to get you an apology. However, even in situations where we are able to secure compensation, we cannot guarantee that you will receive an apology from the healthcare provider responsible for your amputation.
Start an amputation compensation claim
For a friendly, informal discussion about whether you or a loved one is entitled to pursue a amputation compensation claim, please contact your local Devonalds team in Bridgend, Pontypridd, Talbot Green, Tonypandy, Treorchy or Tylorstown.