No Win No Fee Medical Negligence

An Explanation of “No Win No Fee” Medical Negligence Claims

If you or a loved one have suffered a loss, injury or the deterioration of an existing condition which could be attributable to the negligence of a medical practitioner, you may be entitled to make medical negligence claims for compensation under a conditional fee agreement or, as more usually referred to, a “No Win, No Fee” medical negligence claim.

“No Win, No Fee” claims for medical negligence injuries were first introduced more than a decade ago for middle income clients, injured due to medical practitioner´s lack of care, that were unable to apply for Legal Aid. Even though Legal Aid is still available for some medical negligence claims, the fact that you have to repay your legal fees from any award of compensation has deterred many people from pursuing the Legal Aid route, and medical negligence “No Win, No Fee” claims for compensation have become the most often used way to recover medical negligence injury compensation when you or a loved one have suffered due to the negligence of a medical practitioner.

Eligibility to Make “No Win, No Fee” Medical Negligence Claims

In order to be eligible for medical negligence “No Win, No Fee” claims for compensation, you should already have a fairly solid case in place. “No Win, No Fee” medical negligence claims solicitors are only likely to offer legal representation on a conditional fee basis if your claim for medical negligence compensation is at least 75 percent on the way to being successful.

Therefore, if you already have evidence of medical negligence, a medical report that states a loss, injury or the deterioration of an existing condition was attributable to medical negligence or an admission from a medical practitioner that a medical error has occurred, you should be eligible to make “No Win, No Fee” medical negligence compensation claims. If you have not yet collected evidence in support of your claim, this does not mean you will be unable to make “No Win, No Fee” claims for medical negligence compensation, but you should discuss your eligibility to make medical negligence “No Win, No Fee” claims with a solicitor at the first possible opportunity.

Your Potential Liability if you Lose Your Claim

Medical negligence “No Win, No Fee” claims for compensation are not necessarily free of charge should you lose your claim; for although your solicitor will forgo his or her legal fees if they fail to win “No Fee, No Fee” claims for medical negligence injuries, you may still be financially responsible for any disbursements the solicitor has incurred in the preparation of your claim along with the medical practitioner´s legal defence costs.

No Win No Fee Medical Negligence In order to eliminate the risk of financial exposure should you lose your “No Win, No Fee” medical negligence claim, your solicitor will recommend that you are covered by an “After the Event” insurance policy. The terms of this policy allow you to delay “paying” the premium for the policy until such time as the result of your claim is known — at which time the medical practitioner´s insurers will pay for the cost of the policy if your case is won; or the policy will pay for itself if your medical negligence “No Win, No Fee” claim for compensation is lost.

After the Event insurance is usually preferred to any other existing legal expenses insurance you may have that is attached to a home contents or car insurance policy — or provided with a credit card account or by selected motoring organisations — as conditions and payment limits often apply which could result in the policy failing to pay out sufficient funds to cover your financial liabilities should you lose your “No Win, No Fee” medical negligence claim.

Your Potential Liability if you Win Your Claim

An “After the Event” insurance policy can also be used to protect you from any financial liability when “No Win, No Fee” claims for medical negligence injuries are won. Although it is usually the medical practitioner´s insurers who would be liable for costs when “No Win, No Fee” medical negligence compensation claims are won; should your solicitor´s legal fees, disbursements and success fee amount to more than is considered suitable by a court, you would be liable for any deficit in what your solicitor is due — unless you are covered by an After the Event insurance or have sufficient legal expenses insurance from another source.

You may also not receive the full amount of your medical negligence compensation settlement if you have been in receipt of specific State benefits to pay medical expenses or replace lost income, as these have to be refunded to the Department for Work and Pensions Compensation Recovery Unit. Your solicitor will be able to provide a list of the specific benefits which will have to be repaid before you receive your compensation settlement..

One further occasion on which you may not receive all of your medical negligence injury compensation settlement is if you decline an offer of settlement for your “No Win, No Fee” medical negligence compensation claim prior to a court hearing, and the offer is greater value than the amount ultimately awarded by the court. Should this happen, it is likely that you will be liable for your own court costs, the expenses of any witnesses who have attended plus the medical practitioner´s legal fees since the expiry of the offer.

“No Win, No Fee” Medical Negligence Claims Solicitors

Each medical negligence “No Win, No Fee” claim for compensation is accepted or declined on its own merit, and a “No Win, No Fee” medical negligence claims solicitor will explain the terms and conditions of the conditional fee agreement to you before asking you to agree to “No Win, No Fee” legal representation. However, you should be aware that just because a solicitor offers “No Win, No Fee” legal representation for your medical negligence injury claim, it is not a guarantee that your claim will be successful.

Likewise, because a solicitor declines to represent you in a “No Win, No Fee” claim for medical negligence compensation, it is not automatic that there is little chance of winning the case. Other funding options may be more appropriate depending on your individual status and the possible value of your “No Win, No Fee” medical negligence claim for compensation or there may be legal reasons which prevent the solicitor from accepting your medical negligence compensation claim — for example, your age.

Proposed Changes to “No Win, No Fee” Medical Negligence Claims

The Government intends to make changes to the way in which medical negligence “No Win, No Fee” claims for compensation are handled in the forthcoming Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Bill. It is not yet known how “No Win, No Fee” medical negligence claims will be affected or whether access to Legal Aid will be extended, and therefore it is in your best interests to speak with a “No Win, No Fee” medical negligence claims solicitor to ensure that the information published on this page is still current.

To help you obtain accurate and up-to-date information about “No Win, No Fee” medical negligence claims, we have set up a free Medical Negligence Claims Service which you are invited to call on freephone our phone number if you have any questions about your eligibility to make “No Win, No Fee” claims for medical negligence compensation or would like to know more about how to protect yourself from potential financial exposure when making “No Win, No Fee” medical negligence claims.

Our telephone lines are open all day, every day, and any private information shared with our “No Win, No Fee” medical negligence claims solicitors is entirely confidential and will never be disclosed to any other party. Please note that there is no obligation on you to proceed with a “No Win, No Fee” medical negligence compensation claim once you have spoken with us and, if now is not a suitable time to give us a call, please take advantage of our call-back request forms to arrange for one of our medical negligence claims team to call you when it is more convenient.

You may find this page useful for medical negligence cases:

http://www.personalinjuryireland.ie/medical-negligence-cases/


Speak to a medical negligence solicitor about your claim