If you have been left with scars caused by cuts and lacerations on your face or body and it’s because of somebody else’s negligence, you may be eligible to make a scar injury claim for compensation. As well as being paid damages for the pain the initial injuries cause, you could be compensated for any subsequent psychological harm as well such as anxiety or stress. In this article about scar injury claims, we will explain how to begin a claim and what might be included in any settlement.
To begin a scar injury claim right away, call us now on 0800 652 1345. Alternatively, please read on to find out more.
Can I claim compensation for scars on my face or body?
Our solicitors will try to help as many claimants as possible get compensation for their scars but can only take on claims that have a fair chance of success. During their review of your case, they will assess whether:
- You were owed a duty of care by the defendant; and
- An accident or incident occurred because the defendant was negligent; and
- You sustained injuries that resulted in scars on your face or body from the accident.
Your solicitor will check that a duty of care existed so you shouldn’t worry too much about this yourself. During the scar injury claims process, you can help your solicitor in providing evidence to prove how your injuries were sustained and who was responsible. Later on, we’ll show you what types of proof could help with this.
Types of scar injuries you could claim compensation for
There are many different scenarios that could potentially cause permanent scarring that you could be compensated for. Some of the most common include:
- Deep cuts and lacerations.
- Scalds or burns – See our burn injury claims page.
- Injuries caused by physical assault (particularly knife crime) – See our criminal injury claims page.
- Botched cosmetic surgery – See our cosmetic surgery claims page.
- Broken or fractured bones from road traffic accidents that break the surface of the skin – See our RTA compensation claims page.
- Occupational dermatitis following prolonged exposure to hazardous substances at work – See our occupational dermatitis compensation claims page.
Scars occur when the body releases collagen and cells to heal a wound. Some scars are temporary while others will be permanent. If you have suffered any sort of laceration following an accident, it’s important to seek medical attention as soon as possible. Any scarring could be reduced if your injuries are treated swiftly.
How much compensation for a scar can I claim?
Scar injury claims are designed to compensate you for any pain and suffering (general damages) resulting from your accident. They can also include compensation to recoup any financial losses resulting from your injuries (special damages).
The amount you’ll be paid if your claim is successful will depend on how you’ve been affected by the scars but could include a payment to cover:
- The physical pain caused by your initial injuries and any subsequent scarring.
- Any psychological suffering caused by your scars.
- The impact your scars have on your social life, family activities and hobbies.
- Any income you’ve lost because of your injuries (and also any income you might lose in the future).
- Medical costs including private plastic surgery costs in some cases.
- Care costs if you needed help with your usual activities following your accident.
- Fuel, parking and other travel costs linked to your scar injuries.
- The cost of making changes at home or to your vehicle to make life easier if you’re living with a permanent disability.
All of these factors should be carefully considered before you file a scar injury claim as you can only request compensation once. If your case is managed by one of our solicitors, they’ll discuss your case in detail with you to get a full understanding of how you’ve suffered.
Scar compensation calculator
As mentioned above, there are two main types of compensation to consider in a scar injury claim which are general damages and special damages with guidance offered by the Judicial College.
The Judicial College is a body that is respected by the courts and insurance companies offering guidance on personal injury-related compensation claims. The guidelines which are set take into account the severity of the scar injury, the depth of the injury, and the area of the body which has been impacted. They also consider potential treatment required in the long term to address the impact of the scarring.
These guidelines relate directly to general damages with the following advice:
Facial scar compensation amounts
- £1,710 to £3,530 for minor facial scars.
- Facial scarring that is not prominent except on closer inspection and facial scarring that is visible from a short distance can attract compensation payouts of around £3,950 to £13,740.
- Severe facial scarring can lead to damages of up to £97,330.
Compensation amounts for scars on the body
- Compensation for visible but relatively unnoticeable single large scars or multiple smaller scars to the limbs or torso might pay out £2,370 to £7,830.
- Compensation payouts for larger more noticeable scars to the chest, legs, back and arms would be expected to be around £7,830 to £22,730.
- Scarring from severe burns would attract a higher payout. Where scars from burns are covering 40% or more of the body the compensation amount would likely exceed £104,830.
While the Judicial College compensation guidelines are not legally binding they are well respected by the courts and insurance companies.
Psychological effects of permanent scars
If you’ve been injured in a road traffic accident or a knife attack, your scars can be a constant reminder of what happened. This may result in psychological suffering such as depression or Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Scarring to the face can seriously knock your confidence and lead to anxiety and thoughts that people are constantly staring at you.
As well as any physical and psychological harm, scars can have a financial impact too. This might be the case if your appearance is important to your job.
If you do go on to make a scar injury claim, it is important that the full impact of your suffering is considered. If you work with one of our personal injury lawyers, they’ll use their experience to try and secure the maximum compensation possible for you.
What accidents could I claim scar injury compensation for?
As stated above, you can only claim for scars caused by somebody else’s negligence. Some examples of this include:
- If your hands have been left scarred after a chemical spillage at work because your employer did not provide protective gloves – See our PPE claims page.
- Where your legs have been scarred after waiting staff in a restaurant spilt hot food or drink over you because they were carrying too much.
- If you sustained scars following surgery because the surgeon operated on the wrong part of your body – See our medical negligence claims page.
- Where you lost a finger because a poorly maintained cutting machine at work failed to stop when it should’ve done.
- If you sustained scars during beauty treatment because the practitioner was not trained to carry out the procedure – See our beauty treatment claims page.
- If you cut your hands after slipping on a wet floor without warning signs.
- Where you sustained scars after being knocked off your motorbike by another road user who was distracted by their mobile phone – See our motorcycle accident claims page.
Don’t worry if we’ve not described your accident here, you could still be eligible to start a scar injury claim. Simply call our team, explain what happened, and we’ll do the rest.
Claiming compensation for scars caused by physical assault
If you have been scarred following a knife crime or acid attack against you, compensation might be possible from the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA). Unlike in a personal injury claim, you won’t need to prove who caused your injuries or that they were negligent. Instead, you’ll just need to have reported the crime to the police and answered any questions to help with their investigation.
Importantly, the CICA rules may allow compensation to be paid even if the criminal has never been caught or identified. Please let us know if you’d like one of our solicitors to help with this type of claim.
Providing proof for scar injury compensation claims
Proving how your accident occurred, who was responsible for your scars and how you’ve suffered is a vital part of winning a scar injury compensation claim. If you can’t, the defendant’s insurers are likely to reject your claim or pay less than you might be entitled to. As such, gathering proof to support your claim is important. The type of proof that could help with scar injury claims includes:
- Photographs of the accident scene to demonstrate what caused the accident to occur. Also, pictures of your scars as they develop would be useful as well.
- A copy of your accident report form if you have one. You should have been given a copy (or you can request one) if your accident happened in a public place or at work.
- Medical records from the hospital where your injuries were treated. Don’t worry if you haven’t got these already as your solicitor will be able to request them.
- Details of anybody else who saw you being injured. Witness statements can help if the defendant does not accept that they caused the accident to happen.
- Any recordings of your accident happening from CCTV cameras or a dashcam. Legally, you’re entitled to a copy of such evidence but it’s usually deleted quickly so you must act swiftly to secure this proof.
- Details of any costs or expenses you’ve incurred because of your injuries. Receipts, invoices and bank statements could all be used here.
If you call our team for a no-obligation review of your case, we’ll also take a look through any proof you’ve secured already.
Scar injury claim time limits
In the UK, a 3-year time limit applies to personal injury and medical negligence claims. This is dictated by the Limitation Act 1980. The date your time limit will begin will usually be the date of your accident. However, it can be later if your scars were not diagnosed immediately. Also, it’s worth pointing out that if your scars were caused by an assault, the time limit for a CICA claim is 2-years.
Whichever type of claim you are making, we suggest that you start as early as possible. By doing so, there will be plenty of time for proof to be collected and medical assessments to be arranged.
If liability for your claim is accepted, your solicitor might be able to secure an interim payment from the defendant to pay for private medical treatment before your compensation payout is finalised.
Straightforward scar injury claims might be completed within 6 to 9 months while more complex cases could take longer than a year.
No Win, No Fee scar injury claims
Our team of specialist solicitors work on a No Win, No Fee basis for any scar injury claim they agree to work on. If you decide to proceed with your claim, your solicitor will send you a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA) to read and sign. This explains that:
- Your solicitor will work on your case without being paid in advance.
- You don’t need to pay your solicitor if they fail to secure compensation for you.
- If your claim is won, a success fee will be deducted from any compensation you receive.
The success fee is used to pay for your solicitor’s work and to cover their costs. It is a percentage of your compensation that, legally, is capped at 25% when using a CFA. Your success fee will be clearly indicated in your contract.
To check if one of our solicitors will represent you on a No Win, No Fee basis, please call today.
Start a scar injury compensation claim today
Hopefully, this guide has helped you decide whether to seek compensation for a scar or not. If you’re still unsure or if you would like to begin a claim, please call our team on 0800 652 1345. During your free consultation, we’ll provide legal advice and explain your next steps.
If your case has strong grounds, we’ll pass it to one of our solicitors. Any accepted claim will be handled on a No Win, No Fee basis. During your claim, your solicitor will:
- Help collect proof to show what happened.
- Deal with all communications on your behalf.
- Fight your corner and provide additional evidence if your claim is contested.
- Try to secure the highest compensation payout possible.
If you need any further questions about scar injury claims answered, please call our team, arrange a free consultation here, or use the live chat function to get in touch.