Medical Negligence Solicitors

If you have been left with injuries or a worsening existing condition because of poor medical care, then you may have a medical negligence claim. Our medical negligence solicitors are on hand to provide the help you need.

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What is a medical negligence?

Medical negligence is not something most of us will have to deal with in our lives. In the majority of healthcare cases, patients are treated effectively and will go on with their lives as normal.

However, there are occasions when things go wrong. This is when a trained medical professional makes an avoidable mistake, resulting in harm caused to you, the patient. In 2017-2018, the NHS reported receiving 10,673 new claims of medical negligence.

Medical negligence – also referred to as clinical negligence or medical malpractice – also covers occasions when a medical professional or organisation fails in their duty of care to you, causing you injury or harm. This includes:

  • failure to diagnose a condition
  • misdiagnosis of a condition
  • error during surgery or medical procedure
  • administering the wrong drugs
  • failing to warn you about the risks of a procedure or treatment
  • infections acquired during a stay in hospital

You may be able to make a medical negligence claim if you’ve been left with injuries or you’ve suffered an existing condition worsening because of poor medical care from healthcare professionals.

There is a chance you may be unhappy with the outcome of a medical procedure or treatment. However, if it is established that any healthcare professional could have made the same error, it is unlikely that you will have sufficient grounds for a medical claim.

Medical Negligence FAQs

Am I entitled to make a medical negligence claim?

Yes, if you have been let down by a healthcare professional, or have suffered as a result of substandard care, then you could make a claim for medical negligence and be compensated for the poor level of care you have received.

What’s more, by making a claim, you’re bringing those responsible to justice, and could prevent someone else from receiving similarly poor care in the future.

Medical negligence can be defined as:

  • Poor care received in a hospital
  • Misdiagnosis of an illness or injury
  • Substandard operations
  • Being given the wrong prescription medicine

However it happens, medical negligence can be serious and in some cases, even traumatic.

If you’ve received substandard medical care and are unsure if you have a case to make a claim, you can speak to one of our legal experts, who will advise you on whether or not you’re eligible to make a claim for compensation.

How do I make a claim for medical negligence?

All you need to do is contact us.  We will take it from there.

At First4Lawyers, we will always refer your case to solicitors who are experts in dealing with medical negligence claims.

It's then their job to prove you have received sub-standard care, deserving of compensation.  They will work with you throughout the process, keeping you updated as the case progresses to ensure you get the best possible outcome.

Need more answers? Our guide on how to file a medical negligence case explains more about what you need to know.

How long does a medical negligence claim take?

Every case is unique so there is no set time limit for the case to be settled.

As an average guideline, standard cases can take between 12 and 18 months to be settled, but this is by no means a definitive timeline.

Can I claim against my GP?

Yes, you can.

In certain medical negligence cases, the claim is made against the GP, who is insured for these situations.

Common reasons for making claims against GPs include misdiagnosis, poor care and errors with prescription medicine.

Additionally, you can make a claim against GPs who work in either NHS or private practices.

If you feel that you have received substandard care from your GP, if you’ve been misdiagnosed or you’ve received incorrect prescription medicine, then you could be entitled to claim compensation.

Need more answers? Find more information on our GP or NHS negligence page.

Can I make a No Win No Fee claim for medical negligence?

Yes, No Win No Fee arrangements can be agreed for medical negligence cases. When you contact First4Lawyers, we’ll be able to tell you if you are likely to have a case, and can arrange a No Win No Fee agreement.

If you live in Scotland or Northern Ireland you cannot use No Win No Fee agreements in medical negligence cases. 

Is there a medical negligence claims time limit?

Yes, the medical negligence claims time limit is typically three years. This means a medical claim must be made within three years of the negligence occurring.

However, there are occasions when you might not be made aware of the negligence for a long period. In this case, you are able to make a claim after the three-year limit has expired, provided you do so within three years of the date you were first made aware of the effects of what happened. This is referred to as the date of knowledge. This also applies if the patient in question has died.

It is always advisable to begin the claims process as soon as possible. The details of what happened will be clearer in your mind and your solicitor will have more time to gather evidence and build a strong case.

There are exceptions to the medical negligence claims time limit, however. If you are claiming on behalf of a child, you can claim at any point until they are 18, at which point they then have three years to make a claim themselves.

The time limit also does not apply to people with limited mental capacity, so it is possible to claim on their behalf at any point.

Only pay a fee if you receive compensation

Where we offer No Win No Fee services typically customers pay 25% of the amount recovered by our solicitors, although this will be subject to your individual circumstances and the actual fee may be less than this but it will never be more. Success fees are common practice and they were introduced when the law changed in April 2013.

First4Lawyers are an award winning claims management company with a track record of delivering service that our clients love.

Helpful Guides & Resources

The medical negligence claim process explained

Making a medical negligence claimcan seem daunting initially. But you are entitled to proper healthcare, as well as justice for what you’ve been through if it goes wrong.

Read More
What are the medical negligence claims time limits?

No one wants to make a medical negligence claim. These claims are made after something has gone wrong and you have been harmed by treatment you received.

Read More
How to sue the NHS

Our NHS generally does a wonderful job of helping us through our medical problems. However, there are occasions where things don’t go according to plan and someone gets hurt.

Read More

More Medical Negligence FAQs

Why should I make a medical negligence claim?

Medical negligence compensation can be awarded for a range of factors like loss of income, ongoing treatment, cost of care and equipment and costs of adapting your home.

As well as covering any costs or loss of earnings you’ve incurred because of the negligence, it can also provide compensation to cover the psychological impact of the negligence, or the impact the injury has had on your life and family.

Our medical negligence solicitors deal with a range of medical negligence claims, which can often be quite complex. They can make sure you understand what is needed and help make sense of the medical terminology and jargon. Our medical negligence solicitors are on hand to assess your situation, provide the help and advice you need, and the compensation you deserve.

What evidence do I need to make a medical claim?

It will be down to you to prove your claim, rather than the medical professional responsible for your injury to prove they did not cause you harm.

You will need to gather all relevant information to prove your case. It is advisable to keep a record of how you’ve been affected. Ensure you include the dates and times of any appointments or other events, as well as the names of anyone involved. If you have any supporting information, such as letters or medical records, you should keep these.

How long do medical negligence claims take?

Every case is unique so there is no set period in which a medical negligence case will be settled.

As an average guideline, standard cases can take between 12 and 18 months to be settled. But this is not a definitive timeline as the more straightforward cases can be settled sooner than that. On the other hand, more complex cases – which often involve life-changing injuries – can take much longer.

It is sometimes advisable to wait before accepting a settlement figure as you may not yet be fully aware of the effect of the injuries you suffered. Once you know what your future requirements will be, you will be in a better position to evaluate what a fair settlement will be.

You will not be able to make another claim for additional compensation if you find that the amount you accepted is not enough to cover your needs.

Can I make a medical claim against the NHS?

Yes, you may be able to claim compensation for an injury or illness caused by negligent treatment by the NHS.

You may have apprehensions about claiming about the NHS, but you have the right to effective medical treatment. If this is not provided, you also have the right to address this. By highlighting what went wrong, you also have the opportunity to help prevent it happening to others in future.

Compensation is awarded to help you get back to the position you were in before you were affected, not to benefit you financially. It is a way of recognising that you were mistreated and that the situation should be corrected as far as possible.

You are also able to continue treatment at the same organisation you are claiming against, so this should not be a factor when deciding whether to make a medical negligence claim.

Can I make a medical negligence claim against a private hospital?

Yes, you can make a claim against a private hospital or healthcare organisation.

When you make a claim against an NHS hospital, you will be claiming against that NHS Trust. However, if you are claiming against a private clinician or a GP or dentist, you will be claiming against them directly.

Compensation claims are paid by the practitioner’s insurer. This is why they have to have the right level of insurance in place.

Will I need a medical examination to make a medical negligence claim?

When making a medical negligence claim, it is likely that you will need to have a medical examination. A medical expert will be able to assess your condition and give their opinion on what you have suffered.

This will help strengthen your claim, giving you and your solicitor essential evidence to present.

Will I have to go to court for a medical claim?

It is rare that you will have to go to court. Typically, only the most complex cases have to be argued in court. The NHS has reported that 69.6% of medical negligence cases were settled outside of court in 2017-2018, with just 29.7% beginning proceedings and 0.8% actually going to trial.

However, even if you do have to go to court, our medical negligence solicitors will be at your side, supporting you at every stage of the process.

What do medical negligence solicitors do?

Medical negligence solicitors will drive your case forward, ensuring you have the most compelling and convincing basis for making your claim. They will help you compile the evidence you need to prove your case and get the compensation you deserve.

Your medical negligence solicitor may also gather witness statements from others involved, such as your family. They will also help you gather other important information, such as medical notes and expert opinions, to help improve your chances of winning your claim.

Early in the process, they will contact those responsible for your injury and ask them to accept responsibility. If they do accept the blame, your solicitor may secure interim compensation to help you cover any expenses, such as medical care.

If the party responsible for your injury does not accept the blame, your solicitor will then start court proceedings, and potentially then take your claim to trial.

Medical negligence claims are complex, so it is important to choose the right solicitor – one with the experience you need to ensure you have the strongest case and the best chance of making things right.

Why choose First4Lawyers?

Whether you want to make an accident and injury claim, or need a solicitor for personal or business law matters - our friendly team are here to help, 24/7.

Free initial case review

Our fully trained legal advisors are happy to offer initial guidance and advice for free

Fixed price consultation

Phone or face-to-face meeting with a legal expert from just £149

No pressure

We offer advice with no obligation.  We never cold-call or apply pressure to our customers

Meet Jacqueline

Head of Claims

Jacqueline is our head of claims.
She is a qualified solicitor and has practised as a specialist in personal injury cases. A recent addition to our team, Jacqueline has moved to a managerial and coaching role with us, where she is keen to continue the team's training and development to ensure every customer continues to get a first class service.

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