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Road Traffic Accident Claim

Our roads are dangerous places and traffic accidents are unfortunately common occurrences. Many people's lives are dramatically affected each year by road traffic accidents (RTAs) and many times they are innocent victims who have suffered serious injury through no fault of their own.

If you have been the victim of a road traffic accident which was not your fault, you should be entitled to claim personal injury compensation from the insurance company of the person at fault, even if you were a passenger in their car (or from the local authority if the condition of the road was the cause). Even if the person has no insurance, or flees the scene of the accident and is untraceable, you should be able to go ahead with your personal injury claim. The Motor Insurer's Bureau (MIB) have an Untraced Drivers' Agreement and an Uninsured Drivers' Agreement to deal with these issues and to help compensate those injured in these types of road traffic accidents.

Road traffic accidents can cause serious injuries, such as broken bones, whiplash, head injuries, brain damage, paralysis and even death. Their impact on people's lives can range from short-term pain to being unable to work and also to families having to mourn the death of a loved one. Although personal injury compensation will never be able to make up for the pain and suffering involved in a serious road traffic accident, it can help to rebuild people's lives. An award of compensation can help you have private medical treatment, it can replace lost earnings and lost future earnings, and can provide the long term care and quality of life that you want and need. In the case of a fatality, compensation can help to provide for any dependants.

Things you may be able to claim for include:-

  • The actual injury that you sustained.
  • The trauma or distress you have suffered.
  • Loss of income - If you have had to take time off work or are unable to work.
  • Loss of future income - If your injury means that you are no longer able to work or that you have to do a lower paid job.
  • Any damage to your vehicle.
  • Out-of-pocket expenses - Prescription charges, travelling expenses, car hire etc.
  • Damage or loss to your personal property - To replace anything that was damaged or lost in the accident.
  • Insurance excess.
  • Car storage charges.

It is great news that you can claim for these, but you first need to put together a successful personal injury compensation claim.

Claiming Personal Injury Compensation for a Road Traffic Accident

Whether you are a cyclist, motor cyclist, driver, passenger, HGV driver or pedestrian, if you suffered injuries at the hands of another road user or because of a poorly maintained road, you could be eligible for personal injury compensation.

To be able to claim successfully, you will need to actually prove that the accident was somebody else's fault and that you have suffered as a result. The way that you can do this is to gather evidence about the accident. It obviously depends on how badly injured you are in the accident as to whether you can actually gather evidence at the accident scene, but it will be useful if you or a companion can:-

  • Report the accident to the police.
  • Get the details of everyone involved - Contact details of drivers, witnesses etc. and also insurance details of those involved in the accident.
  • Gather statements from witnesses - Do this as soon as possible after the accident so that the details are fresh in their minds.
  • Get a medical check-up - See your GP or go to hospital so that there is a record of your injuries and the extent of them.
  • Keep proof of expenses - Keep all receipts of expenses occurred as a result of the accident and find payslips etc. to prove any loss of earnings.
  • Seek the advice of specialist personal injuries lawyers - Choose one who will work on a "no win no fee" basis so that you do not have to pay their costs if you lose your accident claim.

A good specialist personal injury lawyer will be able to build a case on your behalf, so that you don't need to worry and can concentrate on getting better. They will also be able to tell you the likelihood of success and what compensation you should expect to receive.

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