Making a claim: accidents in public places
Accidents and injuries don’t just happen at work, in the home or on the road, they can also happen in public places with distressing consequences for you and your family.
Whether your accident has occurred in a supermarket or restaurant, car park or shopping centre, we can help you. This is because businesses and Local Authorities have a responsibility to protect those visiting their premises or using their roads and footpaths.
At Browell Smith & Co Solicitors, we have a team of lawyers with specialist knowledge to guide you through this often-complicated area of the law, to help your accident claim reach a successful conclusion.
What type of accidents in public places can you make an accident claim for?
The type of accident and the severity of the injury can vary greatly for accident claims if the organisation responsible is in breach of their duty to maintain the area where the accident takes place.
Common accidents occurring in public places include:
- Injuries caused by defective footpaths, pavements or on roads, or on property maintained by the Local Authority
- Slip or trips inside public places such as supermarkets, shopping centres, sports complexes, car parks, pubs, restaurants etc.
- Objects falling or being left in public places (i.e. building sites, scaffolding, pavements, alternate pedestrian walkways)
Who is responsible if you’ve suffered an accident that’s not your fault?
As long as you are permitted to be on the land or property, then it is the owner of the property who is responsible for your safety. They must take reasonable steps to ensure that all pavements, roads and highways within their boundaries are clear of defects and maintained to a reasonable standard to avoid accidents.
If it can be proven that you have sustained an injury as a result of a third party falling below that level of responsibility to ensure your safety, then you may be entitled to recover compensation for any injuries sustained.
We can help you with this process.
Is there a time limit?
Yes. Most personal injury claims have to be lodged with the court within three years of the accident taking place. The sooner you get in touch with us, the better.
There are exceptions to this, such as with asbestos-related claims, or claims made on behalf of children, but in most cases, three years is the limit.
Use the form below to contact our personal injury team about your accident.
Do you need to gather evidence to make an accident claim?
It is not always practical to gather evidence such as witness contact details, photographs, etc, if you have been injured. However, the more evidence that you have, the more likely we are to be able to help progress your claim successfully.
It will help if you can do as many of the following as possible:
- Take photographs of the location your injury took place
- If you have visible symptoms of your injury, such as cuts, swelling or bruising, take photographs of those
- If a defect to a public highway caused your injury, try to get pictures of it as soon as possible. You can also take measurements of potholes, etc, especially the depth and width
- Provide us with the names and addresses of any witnesses present
What happens when you make an accident claim?
Start by contacting a member of our personal injury team. We will listen to what happened and advise you whether we think there is a strong basis for a claim.
Everything you tell us is confidential, and we pride ourselves on being knowledgeable, friendly and approachable.
If, after the initial consultation, we believe you have an accident claim, we will start to progress it on your behalf.
This will involve gathering evidence – including anything that you can supply – and contacting those who we believe to be responsible. If they accept responsibility, the claim will be more straightforward, but if they don’t, it may end up going to trial.
We will also contact medical professionals to assess your injuries and to help calculate how badly your health and lifestyle were impacted by the injury.
No matter what happens, Browell Smith & Co will take care of everything for you and will support you throughout the entire process.
What can compensation be used for?
The point of compensation for an accident claim is to restore you, as closely as possible, to the situation you would be in had the accident not taken place.
This includes recovering any financial loss you have incurred – medical expenses, physiotherapy costs, loss of earning, etc – and also helping you to recover physically.
In instances of very serious injuries, the victim may be left requiring long-term care. In these cases, compensation will be calculated to take into account the cost of care, any special equipment, as well as modifications to the victim’s home that may be required.
There is no ‘set’ amount of compensation, though there are approximate guides that relate to different injuries. However, other circumstances, such as a person’s earnings, etc, will also have an effect on the amount of compensation due.
You can contact us to discuss your injury and the potential compensation you may be rewarded.
No-win no-fee accident claim lawyers
All personal injury claims are pursued on a no-win no-fee basis. You do not enter into any financial risk when making an accident claim with Browell Smith & Co.
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