In order to make a compensation claim against a hospital consultant, you must have suffered a loss, an injury or the deterioration of an existing condition which “at the time and in the circumstances” was avoidable and attributable to the negligence of a consultant who had a duty of care for your wellbeing.
That definition of eligibility to claim compensation for consultant negligence seems to be fairly clear. However there are plenty of grey areas that may complicate your claim against a hospital consultant – especially if your consultant´s mistake was due to incorrect information he had been provided with by an administrator or a technician, or indeed by the patient themselves.
Because of these grey areas, it is advisable to seek professional legal advice at the earliest practical opportunity. This will ensure that sufficient time is available to construct the strongest possible claim against a hospital consultant so that you will receive the maximum settlement of compensation for consultant negligence.
Making a Claim against a Hospital Consultant
When you speak with a solicitor, he or she will ask you about your loss, injury or deterioration of an existing condition, and why you believe it is attributable to the negligence of a consultant. Your solicitor will ask for your authorisation to access your medical records, and have them reviewed by an independent medical expert to identify areas of negligence.
Once sufficient evidence of negligence is identified to support a claim against a hospital consultant, your solicitor will send a “Letter of Claim” to the NHS Trust responsible for your care. The letter will inform the NHS Trust of your injury and its consequences, and that you are claiming compensation for consultant negligence.
The NHS Trust should admit liability for your injury after conducting its own investigation. In non-medical negligence claims, a case should take around ninety days to resolve once the Letter of Claim has been submitted. However, the investigative process within the NHS is not always the fastest, and you could be waiting a little while for the settlement of your claim against a hospital consultant.
How Much Compensation for Consultant Negligence
How much compensation for consultant negligence you will be entitled to will depend on the nature and extent of your physical injury, and the consequences it has made to your quality of life. If you have been diagnosed with any psychological injury, that too will be included in the settlement of your claim against a hospital consultant, as well as any financial losses you have incurred – or may incur in the future.
To calculate a settlement of compensation for consultant negligence, your solicitor will consult the Judicial Studies Board Guidelines for General Damages in Personal Injury Cases. These guidelines list many different injury types and provides an average financial value based on previous case history. The financial value will be adjusted to account for your personal circumstances and loss of amenity.
This will mean that if you are a younger person who had an active social and recreational lifestyle that you can no longer pursue because of your injury, you will receive a higher settlement of compensation for consultant negligence than an older, unhealthy smoker, whose only recreational pursuit was watching the television.
Independent Information about Consultant Negligence Compensation
Because of the grey areas in establishing negligence in a claim against a hospital consultant, and the many variables involved in the calculation of compensation for consultant negligence, it is always in your best interests to seek professional legal advice at the earliest practical opportunity.
In this respect, we invite you to call our Medical Negligence Advice Bureau and speak with a medical negligence solicitor, who can offer professional and practical advice about claiming compensation for consultant negligence and explain the procedures for making a claim with relevance to your specific situation.
Our solicitor will be able to answer any legal questions you may have about making a claim against a hospital consultant with no obligation on you to proceed with legal action. Our Medical Negligence Advice Bureau has been established to provide free, legal advice about medical negligence, so that you receive all the information you need to make an informed decision about whether you have a claim against a hospital consultant which may be worth your while to pursue.