Brain injury can have life changing consequences, both for those who suffer them and their loved ones. While compensation may not be able to put everything right, it can make a big difference to the quality of care available and your overall quality of life.
Brain injury survivors are often left with serious physical and mental impairments that can make their lives very difficult, as well as putting a lot of strain on their families.
It is common for people living with a brain injury to be unable to work either temporarily or permanently, as well as having to deal with costs associated with rehabilitation, personal care, buying specialist equipment, home adaptations and more.
Compensation can make a real difference in all of these areas, ensuring the very best care can be provided.
Get expert help to claim brain injury compensation
David W Harris & Co’s personal injury lawyers in South Wales are recognised experts in brain injury compensation claims.
Our specialist brain injury solicitors Garan Treharne and Lee Matthews have extensive experience in achieving excellent results in complex brain injury cases. We are approved by leading brain injury charity Headway as specialist brain injury solicitors and are listed under Headway's solicitor panel for Wales.
Our brain and head injury solicitors understand the importance of getting the right treatment and rehabilitation in place – and as quickly as possible – to ensure the best quality of life after suffering a head or brain injury.
We can recommend our carefully chosen, trusted partners in rehabilitative care and support, who can help start the recovery process, including treatment and assessment, even before your claim has been settled.
Our experience with brain injury
Our brain injury solicitors can help with all types of brain injury claims, including those related to:
We recover millions of pounds in compensation for our clients every year and we recently secured a £14million settlement for one of our clients.
Get a free first consultation with our brain injury solicitors in South Wales
Unsure if you are entitled to brain injury compensation or want to know more about how the claims process works?
We offer a free first consultation to answer your questions and help you decide whether you wish to pursue a brain injury compensation claim.
How Do I Make A Brain Injury Claim?
Every brain injury claim is unique, and we’ll carefully review your case details to ensure we achieve the best results for you. The main steps for making a claim are:
1. Get in touch
For a free, no-obligation chat about your or your child’s claim, contact us on 01443 223265 or use our online enquiry form.
2. Funding options
If we think you or your child have a claim, we’ll help determine the best funding arrangements for you, which could include a “no win, no fee” agreement.
We contact the party likely to be responsible for your claim, to notify them and ask them to consider funding your rehabilitation. We will also explore other rehabilitation options to assist you at this stage.
4. Obtaining records
We’ll request copies of your or your child’s medical records, GP notes, and accident reports to help us identify the severity of the injury, and its impact on your or your child’s life. This will help us assess whether anyone’s actions may have caused or worsened the injury.
5. Expert opinion
If the records support your claim, we’ll ask medical and/or accident reconstruction experts to prepare reports about the case.
6. Negotiated settlement
In the vast majority of cases, we can agree a settlement voluntarily with the Defendant (or more commonly, their insurers). This allows our clients to get maximum compensation as quickly as possible, avoiding the need for costly and stressful court proceedings.
7. Court proceedings
In some rare cases, court proceedings may be needed to secure compensation. In such cases, we will ensure you have the best possible representation and personal support.
Fees and Funding
Most brain injury compensation claims we handle are funded on a ‘no win, no fee’ basis. This allows our clients to pursue a claim without having to worry about where to find the money to pay for our services or any financial risk if their claim is not successful.
This type of funding arrangement is more properly known as a ‘conditional fee agreement’ or ‘CFA’. The terms of a CFA are that our fees will only be applied if we secure compensation for our client and that those fees will normally be recovered from the other side.
This means that, if we do not win compensation, our client will owe us nothing and, if we do win, our client will still usually not need to pay our legal fees as they will be covered by the defendant.
Common questions about brain injury claims
What is a brain injury?
Headway defines a brain injury as damage to the brain from trauma to the head. The consequences of a brain injury can be devastating for the injured person and their family, and can result in memory, concentration, language and communication problems. The impact of a brain injury can vary depending on the type and severity of the injury.
Is there a time limit for brain injury claims?
There are strict time limits for brain injury claims. Typically, you have three years from the date on which the injury occurred to issue a claim in court. If you do not issue your claim in time, you will lose the right to bring your claim altogether.
In some circumstances, you will be able to bring a claim within three years of the date on which you ought reasonably to have become aware that you had a claim. This ‘date of knowledge’ test is subjective and needs to be assessed on a case by case basis.
There are two common exceptions to the standard three-year time limit that may apply to brain injury claims:
- When bringing a claim on behalf of a child, you have to issue the claim in court before the child’s 21st birthday.
- If you are claiming for someone without the mental capacity to pursue a claim themselves, there is no time limit. If they later regain capacity, the three-year time limit will apply from that point.
Knowing how the time limits for brain injury claims apply to a specific situation can be complicated. It is therefore important that you get advice from a specialist solicitor as soon as possible to avoid losing the right to claim.
How much compensation will I receive for a brain injury?
The amount of compensation you can receive depends on the severity of your injury, and the impact it has had on your personal life and career. Any financial losses you have suffered will be taken into account.
Brain injury compensation can include damages for matters including:
- Financial losses due to your injuries – including lost wages, the cost of paying for treatment, specialist equipment etc.
- Expected future financial losses – e.g. reduction in your future earning potential, the need to pay for ongoing care etc.
- Loss of amenity – i.e. no longer being able to carry out activities you previously could, such as driving, playing sport etc.
- Pain and suffering – for your physical and emotional pain.
We can talk through the potential damages available and provide an estimate of what may be achievable during your free initial consultation.
Can you claim brain injury compensation for someone else?
Where someone has suffered a serious brain injury, they may not have the capacity to pursue a compensation claim themselves. In such circumstances, it is possible for someone else to pursue compensation on the injured person’s behalf.
The injured party could also be a child, in which case their parents or guardians will be able to pursue compensation up until the child turns 18. The injured party can then potentially pursue their own claim up until their 21st birthday – or if they lack mental capacity, someone else can pursue a claim on their behalf.
In some cases, court approval will be needed before you can pursue a claim for someone else. Our team can advise you on this and assist with the process of securing court approval where appropriate.
What Happens If My Claim Is Successful?
Upon receiving brain injury compensation, there are various issues you will need to consider which our team will be happy to assist with.
Protecting your means-tested benefits
Your financial circumstances change when you receive compensation after becoming seriously injured. This means your means-tested benefits may be at risk. However, you can protect your entitlement to benefits by setting up a personal injury trust. Our specialist brain injury solicitors will be happy to advise you if this is relevant to your circumstances.
Investing your compensation requires careful thought and often specialist advice. We can recommend an appropriate adviser to help you if required.
In many claims for head and brain injury compensation, your current medical situation and future prospects may be improved by receiving appropriate medical treatment including surgery, physiotherapy, counselling or care at the earliest opportunity, rather than waiting for the claim to be concluded. We have arrangements with providers of rehabilitation services to ensure your recovery starts as soon as possible.
What to do next about starting a brain injury claim
To book your free initial consultation with Garan Treharne or Lee Matthews, please get in touch.
Simply use our short online enquiry form, or contact one of our offices directly in Pontypridd, Talbot Green or Swansea, to tell us you would like to speak to a member of our personal injury team about a potential brain injury claim and we will be in touch promptly.