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General Advice

What do I need to know about accident claims generally?

There are many circumstances in which you can claim compensation if you have had an accident. However, it is important to remember that sometimes an accident is just that - an accident! In most circumstances in England & Wales you can only claim compensation if someone is legally to blame for your accident.

You must also have suffered some actual loss: damage to your bike and equipment and/or injury. Under English law you cannot claim just for the nasty experience of being involved in an accident. However, if you do have a valid claim, many people are surprised to find that they don’t have to be seriously injured to be able to claim. Although we deal with some very serious injury claims, we also deal with numerous minor ones - you may be surprised at just how much a few cuts, bruising and aches are worth. Contact us for advice if you are in any doubt about whether you have a claim and how much it may be worth, and see our small claims page.

There are many different circumstances where someone may be to blame for an accident you have suffered. We have tried to give some general advice below about the types of accident you may suffer. If in doubt, please feel free to e-mail or telephone us for advice about whether you may have a claim.

Time Limits

One of the most important things to remember is that, in most circumstances, you only have three years from the date of your accident in which to issue court proceedings. After that time, you will probably be prevented from bringing a claim. It is therefore vital that you seek advice as soon as possible, as there may be a lot of work to be done before a claim is ready to be presented to a court. If you leave it too close to the limit, you may find that we (and many other solicitors) will decline to deal with your claim if we feel that there is too much to be done before the deadline. See also What if the other driver is uninsured.

What if fault for the accident isn’t clear cut?

We will still offer advice and assistance on a ‘no commitment’ basis. Even if the accident is partly your fault, you may still be able to claim subject to contributory negligence. If you think you may have a claim, please call or e-mail us - we will offer frank advice, with no legal jargon, and you’ve got nothing to lose.

What does it cost?

If we are satisfied that you have a good potential claim, we will deal with it on what is frequently called a ‘no win, no fee’ basis. You will not have to pay out any money to pursue your claim.

The official name for this agreement is a "Conditional Fee Agreement". If you win your case, the other party (or, more usually, their insurers) will not only pay you compensation, ("damages"), but will also be required to make a payment towards your legal costs incurred in pursuing your claim as well as the disbursements, such as court fees, medical report fees and barristers’ fees. Conditional fees do not change this basic system, they just mean that if your claim is not successful, we are not paid for the work we have done. This can be a substantial amount, so we are also taking a risk and as such, we need to be confident that your claim is likely to succeed.

In return for taking the risk of not being paid for the work we do for you, we charge a success fee if you win.

We can also act for you even if you have legal expenses cover under an existing insurance policy, because you have a legal right to choose your own solicitor. You do not have to settle with having one appointed for you. If you are in any doubt, please contact us before you speak to your insurer.

What do I need to do?

Just complete the online accident form. We will respond as soon as possible. There is no obligation at that stage. Once we have discussed your claim with you, you then tell us if you wish to proceed.

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