If you have been thinking about seeking compensation after suffering an accident, you may have heard about ‘no win, no fee’* personal injury claims, but what are they and how do they work? Accident Advice Helpline operates a claims process based on this system, which is intended to make it much easier for people of limited means to get access to justice.
Starting a claim
Starting a ‘no win, no fee’ claim does not require lots of money, which makes it a practical choice for people who have limited funds, yet suddenly find themselves in situations where they need legal representation. To start a claim with Accident Advice Helpline or simply to talk to our advisers about your legal options, call us at any time that is convenient for you on our free 24-hour hotline.
Conditional fee agreements
Conditional fee agreements are used in the vast majority of no win, no fee* personal injury claims and if you decide to appoint us this is the system we will use. In simple terms, this means that if we lose your case, you will not have to pay us anything. Apart from significantly reducing your risks, this means we have an extra incentive to ensure you get the best representation possible.
When using a conditional fee agreement, you should ensure that you are protected by ‘after the event insurance’. This will cover any costs if you are required to pay the other side’s fees as a result of losing your case.
You may hear of another type of ‘no win, no fee’ agreement, called the contingency fee agreement. This is not normally used in personal injury claims or other cases where a court is likely to be involved. It involves a lawyer agreeing to take a simple percentage of any financial gain the client makes from the case.
Things to check
Before making a claim, you should be certain you are clear about the level of fees that are likely to be incurred and where they will be taken from. In many cases the losing side pays, but this does not apply in every type of case and sometimes a court can overrule it. Do not allow anyone to pressure you into making a decision too quickly. You can claim compensation for personal injuries at any time within three years of your accident and though an earlier claim is more likely to be successful, you should take the time you need to think it over.
These days it is much easier than it used to be to find a solicitor willing to work on a ‘no win, no fee’ basis, but finding one who specialises in the area of law required can be difficult. At Accident Advice Helpline, we employ an extensive network of solicitors and will be able to provide you with one that has experience in the type of accident you have suffered. This can make a big difference to your chances of success, especially if you are taking on a large organisation that can afford expert representation of its own.
Though ‘no win, no fee’* agreements cannot guarantee a successful outcome, they do make it a lot easier to bring compensation claims and have a fair chance in court. Call us free on 0800 689 0500 or 0333 500 0993 from a mobile phone for free, no obligation advice about making a claim.
Date Published: November 5, 2013
Author: David Brown