Funding Clinical Negligence

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1 Funding Clinical Negligence INJURY & NEGLIGENCE SPECIALISTS

2 Injury & Negligence Stephen Jones is down-to-earth, straight talking and fights every inch for his clients. Quote for Chambers (Independent Legal Guide)

3 WELCOME TO PANNONE PART OF SLATER & GORDON Stephen Jones, Principal Lawyer, explains the options available to fund your claim. Many people worry about making a claim as they are concerned about the cost. Whatever you do, don t let the cost of making a claim stop you from seeking legal advice, as there are many options available to fund your clinical negligence claim. We will work with you to find the best possible way of funding your claim. This booklet highlights the ways in which you may be able to fund your claim, which will hopefully set your mind at ease. If you have any concerns about funding your claim, please do not hesitate to contact us. Stephen Jones, Principal Lawyer 03

4 Injury & Negligence They were helpful and friendly and very thorough throughout my case. Quote about Pannone part of Slater & Gordon, from Liam C. (Cheshire)

5 LEGAL EXPENSES INSURANCE What is Legal Expense Insurance? Legal Expense Insurance covers your legal costs whether you win or lose a case. Usually, it will provide an indemnity cover to a certain limit (usually 50,000) for your solicitors fees, any expenses such as medical expert fees, and it will also cover your opponent s legal fees, should your case be unsuccessful. How do I know if I have Legal Expense Insurance? If you have Legal Expense Insurance, it will be part of an existing insurance policy that you have already. You may wish to contact your insurance companies yourself to check whether you would be covered for your claim. However, if you send any policies you have through to us, we will be happy to check these for you. What policies have Legal Expense Insurance? You can sometimes find Legal Expense Insurance on your household buildings/contents insurance policy. In specific circumstances (such as holiday accidents) you may find cover on your travel insurance policy. Membership organisations (such as trade unions or friendly societies) may give their members Legal Expenses Cover as a benefit. What type of claims does Legal Expense Insurance Cover? It depends on the wording of the policy, for example, some Legal Expense policies will cover for an accident claim, but not an illness claim. Again, if you provide copies of your policies to us, we will check this for you. 05

6 Injury & Negligence CONDITIONAL FEE AGREEMENT What is a Conditional Fee Agreement? A Conditional Fee Agreement is an agreement between you and your solicitors, agreeing that if your case fails, you do not have to your solicitors costs. If you win your case, your opponents will pay the majority of your costs and any costs that are not recoverable from your opponents will be deducted from your damages for compensation. So does the Conditional Fee Agreement cover me for everything? The Conditional Fee Agreement covers you from having to pay your solicitors costs if you lose, but does not cover you for any additional expenses (e.g. medical report fee, court fees, etc) and any costs payable to your opponents. Insurance can be obtained to cover you against these fees. If you win your case, your opponent will pay your reasonable legal costs and expenses and you will be reimbursed for any expenses that you have paid throughout your claim. What is a success fee and am I responsible for paying it? Solicitors who agree to pursue a case under a Conditional Fee Agreement run the risk of not getting paid if you lose your claim. A success fee is the fee charged by all solicitors firms on cases that have been successful under a Conditional Fee Agreement, to reflect the risk that they took for not getting paid. If your case is brought under a Conditional Fee Agreement and your case is successful, it is possible that you may be responsible for our

7 success fee. How this is calculated will be fully explained to you before you enter the agreement. You will receive regular updates and there will be no hidden costs. If your claim is not successful, a success fee will not be charged. How do I get insurance to cover me against my expenses and opponents costs if I lose? We can arrange a specialist legal after the event insurance policy for you. If you lose your claim, the insurance will protect you from having to pay any additional expenses or costs. We will identify an insurer who offers a product that meets your current needs. How much will the insurance policy cost me? Whilst there is a cost, the insurance premium is self-insured and payment is not due until your case concludes. If you lose your case, you will not have to pay the premium. If you win your case, the insurance premium will be payable and the cost will be shared between you and your opponent. Their knowledge and experience are remarkable; they have a vast understanding and their negotiating skills are excellent. Quote for Chambers (Independent Legal Guide) 07

8 Injury & Negligence LEGAL AID What is Legal Aid? Legal Aid is public funding administered by Legal Aid Agency. How do I know if I am eligible for Legal Aid? Legal Aid is available in clinical negligence claims for children with neurological injuries caused during pregnancy, childbirth or in the first 8 weeks of life, resulting in the child being severely disabled. What does Legal Aid cover? Legal Aid will pay for your Solicitors fees and any expenses including experts fees as your case proceeds. Will I have to pay anything towards my legal costs? You may be asked by the Legal Aid Agency to pay a monthly contribution towards your legal costs depending on your income. What happens if I win my case? If your case is successful, your opponent will pay your reasonable legal costs and expenses. However, if there a shortfall, the Legal Aid Agency may obtain that shortfall from your compensation. This is known as the Statutory Charge. What happens if I lose my case? If your case is unsuccessful, you will not have to pay anything.

9 PRIVATE FUNDING What sort of case would I need to pay for privately? It is very rare to privately fund a personal injury case but for some clinical negligence cases it may be the only method of funding the initial investigation. When would this occur? This would only happen if we were unable to offer you a Conditional Fee Agreement from the outset because of uncertainties in your case. How much would it cost? In the above circumstances, we would normally agree a fee with you for the cost of the initial investigation. The initial investigation would involve obtaining the relevant medical records and obtaining independent expert reports. How would I pay? To help you budget, we would usually suggest that you set up a standing order and pay an interim payment in these circumstances. What would happen after the initial investigation? As soon as expert evidence is obtained, we will then be able to advise you of the prospects of success. If we advise you to proceed, it is likely to be on the basis of a Conditional Fee Agreement, backed by After the Event Insurance, so any future costs and expenses would be covered by this. I have been nothing but impressed with my solicitors. Quote about Pannone part of Slater & Gordon, from Mrs L (Weston-super-Mare) 09

10 Our solicitors have given our son a quality of life we never thought possible. He now has the security for a brighter and happier future. Quote about Pannone part of Slater & Gordon, from Mr. Booth Harry Booth

11 CONTACT US Highest quality advice (ranked in top tier by leading independent legal guides Chambers and Legal 500) Free no obligation consultation Experienced specialist solicitors and principal lawyers who are Leaders in their field National UK coverage and home visits Please contact us for an initial free, no obligation, consultation. please contact us free Freephone Pannone part of Slater & Gordon have offices nationwide. To find your local office visit For further information, please go to:

12 For more information, please contact Jane Whitaker on or Slater & Gordon (UK) LLP is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority.

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