Medical Negligence Compensation Claims – 9 common questions

I have seen the terms medical negligence, medical malpractice, clinical negligence and hospital compensation used. Are they all different?

No, these terms are used interchangeably and they all refer to bringing negligence claims against any medical services provider or practitioner such as a hospital or GP surgery. It is however likely that you will see the terms medical negligence and clinical negligence used most commonly.

How long do I have after my accident to make my medical negligence claim?

You must generally make your claim within three years of the injury occurring, or within three years of becoming aware that you had sustained an injury as a result of medical negligence. However, theses are guidelines, not rules, as the time limitation for claims can be complicated. Therefore, we suggest that you contact us even if you suffered an injury more than three years ago to see whether you are still eligible.

Must I be seen by an independent medical expert in as part of my medical negligence claim?

Yes, if we believe that you have a strong basis for your claim we will send you to be medically assessed by one of our independent experts in the relevant area of medicine. Bonallack and Bishop has built strong relationships with a great number of medical consultants who determine the nature and extent of your injuries before advising us on particular details of the case. This network of expertise makes us perfectly placed to bring your case against the NHS or a private medical establishment.

How much will it cost to bring a medical negligence claim?

There are various options when it comes to funding your medical negligence claim, including ‘no win no fee’ arrangements and legal aid (public funding). Click here to find out more about how to fund your case.

How much compensation will I receive for my medical negligence claim?

This depends entirely upon the particulars of the case. It is not uncommon for clients to receive very large payouts from NHS Trusts where they have suffered serious injuries which have significantly impacted their everyday lives. Needless to say, we will always strive to win the maximum compensation payable for any injury you sustain as a result of medical negligence.

Will I need to go to court?

Only a small minority of cases will be decided in the courts. The vast majority of medical negligence compensation claims against hospitals or NHS Trusts are settled out of court. This means that a compensatory sum is agreed between us and the relevant medical provider with your approval, thus removing the need for court proceedings.

I have been the victim of medical negligence but I’m concerned about suing the doctor personally. Will this be necessary?

Rather than claiming against the doctor himself, we usually claim against the NHS Trust that employed them. This is not always the case though, particularly if you were a private patient, in which case we will assess the specifics of your case and decide on the most appropriate direction to take.

What if my injury was caused by a medical professional who wasn’t a doctor? Can I still claim compensation?

Yes, any healthcare professional could be guilty of medical negligence and if you were injured as a result, you deserve to be compensated. Bonallack and Bishop has pursued claims on behalf of our clients against dentists, nurses, ambulance drivers, pharmacists and physiotherapists, not just hospitals.

Am I still entitled to claim if I was a private medical patient?

Yes, whether you were treated privately or within the NHS, you could be entitled to make a claim.