Victims of Negligence are Never Winners
- AuthorLeanne Day
The Association of Personal Injury Lawyers ('APIL') have recently posted a blog regarding the adverse effects of calling victims of negligence 'winners' when it comes to settling their claims. APIL continue to drive for justice for injured people through their 'Rebuilding Shattered Lives' campaign.
There has long been negative stereotyping on victims of negligence and those who bring personal injury claims. Typical views are that they exaggerate their injuries or their claims are fraudulent. Clients often feel guilty for bringing a claim, despite having been injured through no fault of their own and this perception must change.
No Win No Fee Agreements are now more commonly called 'Conditional Fee Agreements'. APIL are encouraging the public not to use the word 'win' when it comes to settling compensation claims which can greatly offend an injured person. Being injured can never be seen as a win, regardless of the amount of compensation awarded. It is often the case that injured clients cannot be put back in the position they were in before their accident in terms of their health, and injuries may be life-long. Financial redress is therefore often the only form of available compensation.
APIL's Mike Benner states in his recent blog that "most would value a clean bill of health over any amount of compensation in the first instance. But victims of negligence deserve the right to redress. They must be treated with respect and compassion, and remain at the heart of policy making which affects them."
Personal injury lawyers can also face misconceptions and we aim to change this one step at a time. Here are a few key points to consider:
- Lawyers don't just seek financial compensation - we also aim to arrange rehabilitation/treatment to get the injured person better as quickly as possible.
- We help society by ensuring companies and local authorities are concerned for the welfare of others and are held accountable for their mistakes.
- We do what we can to support claimants financially by obtaining an interim payment where the circumstances allow.
- We are approachable, friendly, and human! We are real people who can put ourselves in your shoes.
- We cannot prevent accidents from happening, but we are here for those who need us afterwards and are often described as the light at the end of the tunnel for those who have been injured.
- We encourage early settlement, where we are in a position to do this properly. Court proceedings are avoided where possible as this process only increases costs, time and stress which is in no one's best interests.
Chattertons fully support APIL's campaign and strive to ensure the public understand the purpose of compensation. You can view APIL's blog here - Compensation is never a win - Rebuilding Shattered Lives (rebuilding-shattered-lives.org.uk) - which gives examples of how being injured can affect every aspect of a person's life, whether that's physically, mentally or financially.
If you have had an accident and would like a friendly chat, please call 01205 315 308 and we will be happy to see if we can help.