At Accident Advice Helpline we deal with many different kinds of accidents, one we received recently was ‘I have a Rugby injury – who do I claim against?’.Many people worry that if they can’t work out who is responsible for an accident, they can’t claim. In fact, the issue of legal responsibility can be complex and sometimes what you really need is an expert who can figure this out on your behalf. Our friendly helpline staff can tell you if your claim is valid and if you want, they can put you in touch with one of our specialist solicitors who can work with you to establish the best way forward.
A valid claim
What we mean when we say a claim needs to be valid is that it needs to fit within the restrictions of compensation law. It doesn’t mean that we don’t believe you, and if you have a borderline case we’ll always do our best to work out a solution.
Under the rules that govern compensation, it’s difficult to bring a case more than three years after an accident has happened. Occasionally, exceptions can be made where injuries or health problems have only shown up later on, but can clearly be traced back to a particular cause. This might apply to someone who plays rugby when young and later develops serious leg problems because of fractures that weren’t identified at the time. In a case like this it means that you should contact us as soon as a doctor identifies the problem.
Claims can only be made if a medical record of the injuries exists. In an ordinary case it means that you’ll need to be treated by a doctor as soon as possible after the accident. A first aider who helps you when the injury occurs may not have the qualifications necessary to write a medical report, so make sure that you also see your own GP or a hospital doctor.
The person responsible
Whoever can be held liable for your rugby injury will depend on a number of factors. If you tripped on uneven ground, it will usually be the club that is liable and if it’s properly insured, a case can be brought against it without worrying about causing it serious financial trouble. If you were injured in a scrum that was clearly out of control, the referee may be at fault for not stopping it in time. If you were just learning to play and became injured because you were told to do something that you clearly weren’t ready for, the person held responsible could be your trainer. Your solicitor can help you to work this out.
When you’ve suffered a Rugby injury – who do I claim against is usually not your most immediate thought. It will probably have more to do with wanting the pain to stop and wanting to feel better. The act of claiming compensation is to help you with those things and we’ll do our best to make sure you get it.