Last updated on February 17th, 2022 at 09:23 am
If you’re injured in a public place because somebody else was negligent, you could be entitled to compensation. In this article on claiming compensation for an accident in a public place, we’ll look at what types of injuries you could claim for and we’ll explain how the claims process works.
ClaimsAction.co.uk offers a free review of your case during a no-obligation telephone consultation. During your call, you’ll receive legal advice and your options will be considered. Should there be sufficient grounds to make a claim, we’ll ask one of our personal injury lawyers to contact you. If they agree to deal with your claim, they’ll represent you on a No Win No Fee basis. Knowing that you will only have to pay for your solicitor’s work if you’re compensated should make the claims process much less stressful.
We are ready to discuss your case today so call us on 0800 652 1345 to talk with an advisor. If you would rather learn more about how public place claims work before getting in touch, please continue reading.
Can I claim compensation for an accident in a public place?
If you’re in a public place, the owner or occupier of the place is likely to owe you a duty of care. This means that they’ll need to implement appropriate measures to try and keep you as safe as possible. This might include carrying out regular risk assessments and removing any dangers they identify. In some cases, extra care may need to be taken if the place is likely to be used by children. For example, operators of playgrounds or soft play areas should consider how toddlers could be injured where an adult wouldn’t be.
If you ask one of our personal injury solicitors to help you with a public place claim, they’ll carry out a few checks before taking your case on. They’ll try to confirm whether:
- A legal duty of care was owed to you by the defendant; and
- Their negligence caused an accident in a public place to occur meaning they’d breached the duty of care; and
- You sustained injuries as a direct result of the accident.
Several laws can be used to help establish a duty of care. It’s not something you will need to be too worried about as your solicitor will assess this for you. However, one of the most common pieces of legislation that’s relevant is the Occupiers Liability Act 1957.
The next thing you’ll need to prove is how your accident occurred and how you suffered as a result. This is where you can supply proof to support your case. We’ll show you what sorts of proof can be used further on.
Common accidents leading to public place compensation claims
Essentially, a public place can be described as anywhere a member of the public can go without seeking permission from the owner or occupier. That means you could claim for any injury you sustain in such a place if your accident was caused through an act of negligence. Some examples of where accidents could lead to public place claims include:
This list is designed to give you some idea of the types of places where accidents could happen. We could help you with public place claims whether you were injured in one of the locations listed above or somewhere else.
Who do I claim compensation against?
As part of the claims process, you’ll need to identify who you should take action against. It’s not always straightforward and some claims could involve multiple parties. If your case is accepted, your solicitor will identify who you should claim against with you. Potentially, compensation claims could be made against any of the following:
- Public bodies.
- Local authorities or councils.
- The government.
- Transport operators.
If you believe that you’re entitled to compensation after being injured in a public place, call us to discuss your options.
Common injuries caused by public place accidents
Public place compensation claims can be made for any type of injury that happened because of somebody else’s negligence. Some of the most common claims include those for:
- Broken bones.
- Back injuries.
- Cuts and bruises.
- Ligament, tendon and soft tissue injuries.
- Arm, leg, finger or toe amputations.
- Neck injuries.
- Head injuries and brain damage.
Whatever type of injury you’ve endured, we could help you claim compensation. If you’d like a free review of your case, please get in touch.
Split liability public place injury claims
It is sometimes possible to claim even if you were partly to blame for the accident. For example, if you weren’t paying attention at the time of the accident, the defendant could claim that you were 25% responsible for the accident and your injuries. If that figure is agreed upon by both parties, the claim would proceed as normal. Once a settlement is agreed, the final payment would then be reduced accordingly.
Common causes of accidents in public places and compensation claims
Let’s now look at some common causes of why you might be entitled to compensation for injuries sustained in a public place. You could claim for accidents caused by:
- Wet floors without warning signs caused by leaks, spillages or cleaning.
- Objects falling onto you because they were not secured properly.
- Uneven paths or walkways.
- Damaged furniture.
- Trip hazards that were difficult to see because of inadequate lighting.
- Poorly maintained or unsafe equipment.
- Staff failing to follow the correct safety procedures.
- Missing or damaged safety features such as handrails.
To check if you’ve got a valid claim, call 0800 652 1345 and ask one of our advisors today.
Providing proof for a public place accident claim
Most public place accident claims will be made against the defendant’s insurance policy. This could include public liability insurance, home insurance or another type of policy designed to protect the defendant against personal injury claims.
When your claim is passed to an insurer, they’re unlikely to pay any compensation unless it’s clear that their client caused your accident and the injuries you’re claiming for. As such, you should provide as much proof as possible. This can include:
- Photographic evidence. Taking pictures of an accident scene is a great way to demonstrate what caused your accident. If you can, try to take as many pictures as possible before the cause is removed or repaired.
- Medical notes. It’s always a good idea to seek professional medical treatment for your injuries. This can be at a hospital, GP surgery or minor injuries unit. If you decide to claim compensation for an accident in a public place, you are able to request a copy of your medical records to show what treatment you received.
- Accident report forms. When you’re involved in a public place accident, it should be recorded in an accident report book (or something similar). You are entitled to a copy of the report and it could be used to prove that the incident took place when and where you claim it did.
- Video recordings. CCTV footage is another good way to show how an accident happened. If your incident was caught on camera, you should act quickly to try and secure the relevant footage before it’s deleted.
- Witness information. A statement from a witness can be really useful if the defendant denies causing your accident. Therefore, you should make a note of the contact details of anybody who saw what happened.
Another piece of evidence that is typically required for a personal injury claim is a medical assessment report. For that reason, if your claim proceeds, you might be asked to meet with an independent medical expert. This can usually be booked locally by your solicitor.
During the meeting, your injuries will be examined by the specialist and they’ll discuss how you’ve been affected. Once they’ve finished their review, they’ll write a report to show what injuries you’ve sustained. They’ll also offer a prognosis. The report will then be sent to your solicitor and the defendant’s insurer.
How much compensation for a public place accident?
Any settlement that is agreed upon for an accident in a public place will be based on the pain you’ve suffered (general damages) and any costs you’ve incurred as a result (special damages). You will need to justify any amounts you claim.
The types of damages that might be covered by a personal injury claim include:
- The pain and suffering your injuries have caused. This can include mental harm caused by depression, anxiety or similar conditions as well.
- Any effect the injuries have had on your social life or hobbies (loss of amenity).
- The cost of private medical treatment or rehabilitation costs (physiotherapy for example).
- Care costs linked to a professional carer or the time a loved one had to spend looking after you.
- Travel expenses like fuel, parking or public transport costs caused by trips to the hospital for example.
- Lost earnings and any income you’re likely to lose in the future.
- Costs associated with changing your home to help you deal with any long-term disabilities.
You should be aware that you can’t request additional compensation after you’ve settled your claim in full. It’s therefore a good idea to spend some time reviewing your potential losses before filing your claim. If you decide to work with us, your solicitor will consider all aspects of your claim to try and ensure you request the maximum level of compensation possible.
Public place accident claims time limits
Personal injury claims in the UK have a 3-year time limit. For most public place accident claims, that limitation period will start from the date of your accident. While that does seem like a long time, we’d suggest that you begin your claim as soon as possible.
That’s because there are a number of steps your solicitor will need to complete before filing your claim. These include arranging a medical assessment and collecting supporting evidence. Also, if liability for the accident is accepted by the defendant, your solicitor may ask for an interim payment to cover the cost of private medical treatment so that you could recover more quickly.
No Win No Fee public place accident claims
As our solicitors offer a No Win No Fee service, you should find the claims process fairly stress-free if your case is taken on. That’s because you won’t need to fund your solicitor’s work upfront and they won’t charge you for their work if your claim fails.
If you and your solicitor agree to work together, you’ll be sent a contract called a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA) to formalise everything. This will show you what your solicitor will do during the claims process and explain when you’ll need to pay a success fee.
The success fee is up to 25% of any settlement you receive (capped by law) and covers your solicitor’s work and expenses.
To check if you could claim with one of our No Win No Fee personal injury solicitors, please call today.
Start a public place accident claim today
We hope this article has explained when you can claim compensation following an accident in a public place. If you would now like to take action, please get in touch by calling 0800 652 1345 right away. During your call, we’ll examine the chances of you being compensated and provide free legal advice about your options.
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