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Get Justice From Misfortune: Compare Solicitors and Make a Claim

A claim may be needed for a number of reasons. Whatever yours is, find the right solicitor to help you with SpotDif.

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What's In This Guide

Make a claim: compare claims solicitors

If you want to make a claim, it can seem daunting. But don’t worry — SpotDif can help you find a claims lawyer to guide you through the process.  


If you’ve been mis-sold car finance, involved in an accident or been the victim of medical negligence, a claims lawyer can help. You might need a helping hand through the insurance claims process. Or a small claims lawyer to take your case to court. We’ll help you find specialists in your area who can help you get compensation.

Claims Terminology

Before we look at claims in more detail, let’s look at some terminology: 

 

What is compensation? Compensation is money paid out when you suffer loss or damage. For example, you can claim compensation if you’re involved in an accident that’s not your fault. 

 

Who is the claimant in a case? The person bringing a claim to court. For example, if you ask for compensation in the small claims court, you're the claimant. 

 

What is a claims lawyer? If you want to take a case to court, you'll need a claims solicitor specialising in this area. 


At SpotDif, we're here to demystify the claim process. When you're ready to take things further, we'll connect you with the best specialist claims lawyers in your area. Read on for all you need to know about miss-sold car finance, personal injury claims, and medical negligence claims. 


Car finance claims

Did you know you could claim hundreds in mis-sold car finance? 9 out of 10 of us choose to buy a car using some form of credit. But what happens if you struggle to make payments or are charged unfairly? 

 

Car finance is a multi-billion pound industry in the UK. The three main types of financing deals are: 

 

  • Hire purchase: You'll pay the car's value monthly payments. 

  • Leasing agreement: You’ll rent a car for a set period without the option to buy. 

  • Personal contract purchase: You'll make regular monthly payments with the option to buy your car at the end of the agreement with a substantial one-off amount (balloon payment). 

 

Most mis-sold car finance claims are the result of PCP financing. If you've taken out PCP financing since the 1st of April 2014, you might have been mis-sold your car financing. If you have a valid reason for making a claim, we'll put you in touch with a claims lawyer in your area. 

Can I claim for mis-sold car finance? 

For most of us, buying a car on finance is straightforward and trouble-free. But if you were mis-sold car finance in the UK, you may be able to make a claim. Try this quick mis-sold car finance check: 

 

  • You weren’t told the salesman was getting a commission for setting up your finance agreement 

  • You weren’t given transparent information on car finance options and the different interest rates. 

  • You weren’t offered the best interest rate. 

  • The terms and conditions of the contract should have been explained. 

  • You weren’t subject to affordability checks. 

  • You were pressured into making a decision. 

 

Below are the most common ways to make a claim.


Lack of transparency 

You could make a claim if you didn't know your salesman was earning a huge commission or that you'd be charged for extra mileage.


Alternatively, there may have been hidden charges — for example, extras that weren’t necessary or appropriate. Perhaps you didn’t understand the finance agreement, and were misled about owning the car at the end of the contract. Disproportionately high costs for damage, such as overcharging for minor repairs, can also count as mis-sold car finance. 


Lack of affordability checks 

Your salesperson must check that you can afford to make repayments on your car. However, you can't make a claim if you could afford the vehicle initially, then your circumstances changed.  

 

Your contract was mis-sold if: 

 

  • You struggled to keep up with the payments even though your circumstances had stayed the same. 

  • You got into other debt to pay for your car loan, e.g., using a credit card to make the payments. 

  • You couldn’t make the balloon payment because it wasn’t explained to you or was more than you could afford. 

 

You can still make a claim no matter if you still have car finance or you’ve paid it off. The Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) will investigate mis-sold car finance claims up to three years old. 

What are my rights with car finance?  

Buying a car on finance in the UK gives you specific rights and protections. Here's what you need to know: 


Basic rights 

Under the Consumer Rights Act 2015, your car must be: 

  •  Fit for purpose 
  • As described in any publicity 

  • Of satisfactory quality 

 

For example, if your dealer says a vehicle is in pristine condition and it turns out to have defective brakes, you could make a claim. 

 

Car financing 
  • If something goes wrong and you have a credit agreement or used a credit card, you have the right to make a Section 75 claim. If you’re successful, they’ll refund your money. 

  • If the car is unsatisfactory and you have a Hire Purchase agreement, the finance company should reimburse you. 

  • If your claim is rejected, you should apply to the FOS with a copy of the finance agreement and any other evidence, including mechanics reports and vehicle documentation. 

 

How long does a car finance claim take? 

The Financial Conduct Agency (FCA) estimates that thousands of motorists have been mis-sold car finance. If this applies to you, and you’ve used our mis-sold car finance checklist to see if you could claim, you’ll need to act fast. 

 

According to the rules, your lender has eight weeks to reply to any complaint. However, if they decide to dispute your claim, it could take 12-18 months to settle.  

Personal injuries claims  

If you want to claim for personal injury, contact a firm of injury claim lawyers as soon as possible. In most cases, you'll have three years from the date of your injury to start the process. 

 

In this quick guide, we'll take you through the personal injury claim process, from what you can claim to finding an accident claim lawyer. You can use this personal injury claim calculator to determine how much compensation you could be owed.   

What can you claim for as a personal injury?  

Have you suffered an illness or injury due to someone else's negligence? Then you can claim either general or special damages: 

 

General damages: This part of your claim is about your injury. You’ll be awarded compensation for pain, suffering and the effect on your quality of life. The amount you're awarded will depend on the extent of your injuries. Guidelines are in place for how much you can claim for general damages. 

 

Special damages: 'Out of pocket' expenses are meant to compensate you for financial loss because of the accident. They cover losses as a result of the accident and future costs you might have because of it: 

 

  • Loss of earnings. 

  • Treatment, rehabilitation and care either temporarily or for the rest of your life. 

  • Loss of property, e.g. mobile phone damaged in a traffic accident. 

  • Aids, equipment and adaptations are required to help you live in your home, including purchasing a new property. 

  • Travel expenses incurred through the accident, e.g. taxi fares to hospital appointments.  

What is classed as a personal injury claim?  

Before making a claim, you'll need to determine if your injury meets the legal definition. 


Physical injury

This is any injury with life-changing results that requires long-term care or rehabilitation. It also includes illnesses caused by negligence, e.g. asbestos-related illnesses. 

 

Psychological injury 

These include any mental illness or severe stress resulting from a traumatic event, e.g. a criminal assault or traffic accident. 

 

Most personal injuries fit one of the following categories: 

  • Injuries at work — where the employer or a co-worker is negligent. 

  • Slip, trip and fall accidents — e.g. wet floors without a warning sign. 

  • Assault. 

  • Road accidents — where you’re a driver, passenger, pedestrian or cyclist who’s been hit by a car. 

  • Medical malpractice — where physical injuries or illnesses are made worse by the wrong treatment or missed symptoms. 

  • Product liability — where a dangerous or faulty product has injured you. 

How long do personal injury claims take  

Every claim is unique. So, the time it takes your accident claim lawyer to settle your claim varies from person to person. How long that takes depends on: 

 

  • The type of accident

  • The severity of your injuries 

  • How long it takes the other party to admit fault

  • The length of your recovery time 

  • The full impact of your injuries

  • How long it takes to build your case

 

We’ll help you compare injury claim lawyers in your area so you can start your claim as quickly as possible.

Is it worth claiming personal injury?

If you've been hurt in an accident, you may struggle to cope physically, mentally and financially. Compensation could help to make life easier, but is it worth the hassle? 

 

Claiming personal injury is not to be taken lightly. The Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 excludes personal injury claims from legal aid. 

 

In 2013, the Jackson Review changed how injury claim lawyers could claim success fees. Instead of reclaiming from the defendant, the success fee must be paid by you. So if you win your claim, you'll lose 25% of any compensation in legal fees.  

 

In addition, the amount you can claim for whiplash injuries is now tightly controlled under the Civil Liability Act 2018.  

 

However, your losses could soon mount up if you're badly injured. Suppose you have life-changing injuries and cannot work or need special adaptations to your home. In that case, it's well worth claiming personal damages. 

What is no-win no-fee?  

No-win, no-fee means precisely that - if you bring a claim and don't win, you won't have to pay anything. It's a popular way of making a personal injury claim because there are no upfront payments. 

 

If you’ve taken out a legal expenses insurance premium, this is deducted from any compensation you might receive. Otherwise, the policy is cancelled.  

 

If your case is risky, your injury claim lawyers might arrange a partial no-win, no-fee agreement where you pay expenses like medical reports and court fees.

Should I use a solicitor for a personal injury claim?  

You’re not legally required to be represented by an accident claim lawyer. But with their legal training and experience, they can help you get maximum compensation. 

 

A considerable amount of work goes into a successful claim. Letting a lawyer handle it for you gives you the best possible chance of success. 

 

And while there's nothing to stop you from claiming yourself, a single mistake could be costly and prevent you from getting the compensation you deserve. 

 

Your injury claim lawyers will: 

 

  • Assess whether you have a strong case and are likely to succeed. 

  • Collect and submit evidence that shows your claim is valid.  

  • Have excellent knowledge of personal injury law. 

  • Have the experience to know when to accept a compensation offer. 

  • Not be intimidated by other lawyers. 

  • Prevent you from getting stressed during the personal injury claim process. 

What is the average payout on a personal injury claim in the UK?  

Personal injury payouts depend on several factors, including: 

 

  • The injury and its severity 

  • The recovery and rehabilitation time 

  • Loss of earning 

  • Long-term disability 

  • Psychological damage caused by the injury 

 

General damages are set using the Judicial College Guidelines, which categorises injuries as minor, moderate, severe and very severe. There's no average or fixed amount because each personal injury is different.  


Medical negligence claims 

Generally, you can look forward to excellent medical care in the UK. But if things go wrong, you could be the victim of medical negligence.  

 

If making a formal complaint hasn’t worked, you might need to find a team of medical negligence solicitors. A specialist lawyer will be able to handle your claim and get you the best compensation. 

 

You can find out what you could claim with an online medical negligence calculator. 

What can be classed as medical negligence?  

So what is medical negligence? A medical negligence claim is the most complex type of personal injury. It can have life-changing consequences or could even be fatal. 

 

Medical negligence cases depend on your solicitor being able to prove the following: 

 

  • Your doctor or other healthcare professional has a legal duty of care to look after you, and their actions or inactions cause you harm.  

  • A medical professional accidentally or deliberately fails to follow care standards. 

  • A medical professional causes harm by direct cause, e.g. misdiagnosis or prescribing the wrong medicine. 

  • A medical professional causes physical, psychological or financial damage to their patient.   

 

Some examples of medical negligence include: 

 

  • Your GP prescribes a medication that causes an allergic reaction despite being aware of your allergy. 

  • Your cancer is misdiagnosed, and your treatment is delayed, resulting in the cancer spreading. 

  • A surgeon operated on the wrong body part or left a foreign body inside you. 

  • A gynaecologist fails to spot an ectopic pregnancy, resulting in infertility. 

 

Medical negligence can also occur in mental health treatment, radiology, dentistry, and cosmetic surgery, as well as emergency medicine.

On what grounds can you sue for medical negligence?  

Do you believe you've suffered damage or loss because of how a doctor or health professional has behaved? In that case, you can sue for medical negligence. You may have suffered: 

 

  • Physical harm 

  • Psychiatric harm 

  • Financial loss 

 

You must prove that a healthcare professional didn't keep you safe or act in your best interests. 

 

So, what is the duty of care? All trained medical professionals are legally responsible for providing a reasonable standard of care for their patients.  

 

For example, your doctor should refer you to a specialist if you need cancer care or prescribe the right medicine or course of treatment. You can sue for medical negligence when: 

 

  • Your doctor’s incompetence causes an injury. 

  • You suffer loss of income or a disability due to your doctor's action or inaction. 

  • Your doctor knowingly provides substandard levels of care. 

How successful are medical negligence claims in the UK? 

In 2022/23, the NHS received 13,551 claims for medical negligence. In 99% of cases, some form of settlement was reached, and damages were paid in 51% of cases

 

It’s important to remember that medical negligence doesn't start and end with the NHS. If you think you’ve been the victim of medical negligence in the private sector, talk to a solicitor about making a claim.

Do I need a solicitor for medical negligence?  

Making a claim can be difficult and stressful. Medical negligence is one of the most complex areas of public injury law. Therefore, it makes sense to use a firm of medical negligence solicitors for your claim. 

 

A solicitor will: 

 

  • Offer free advice on the potential success of your claim. 

  • Gather evidence to make your claim. 

  • Offer a no-win, no-fee medical negligence claim package. 

  • Be sympathetic to your situation. 

  • Have the expertise and knowledge to maximise your compensation. 

 

When you’re looking for a firm of medical negligence solicitors, ask the following questions: 

 

  • Are they accredited by trusted associations? 

  • Do they have a strong track record of successful claims? 

  • Does your solicitor have strong listening and communication skills? 

  • Do they work on a no-win, no-fee basis? 

 

It's essential that you develop a bond of trust with your solicitor. The claims process can take months or years, so a good working relationship is vital.  

Can I sue the NHS without a lawyer?  

Yes, you can. But it can be an overwhelming experience, and any mistakes could see you lose out on compensation. 

 

It can seem uncomfortable to take action against the NHS. After all, they’re a treasured institution with a reputation for outstanding work. But that doesn’t mean that mistakes can’t happen or that people shouldn’t expect acceptable standards of care. 

 

You have the legal right to sue the NHS if something goes wrong. A specialist lawyer will have the expertise and knowledge to get the best compensation for your injury. And they won't be intimidated by the size of the organisation or the tactics of lawyers trying to stop you from getting compensation. 

 

If you decide to sue the NHS, the first step is contacting a specialised solicitor. Compare quotes now for medical negligence solicitors in your area. 

Compare claims lawyers with SpotDif  

Now you know more about making a claim, SpotDif can help you find a specialist lawyer in your area. 

 

Getting started couldn’t be simpler. We’ll ask you a few straightforward questions and then match you with the right quotes for your budget. It couldn’t be easier. 

 

We aim to save you time and money. So let SpotDif find you the best accident and injury claims lawyers locally in seconds.

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Tansy Dando
Senior Content Manager
I'm always curious to understand and unpick the latest trends for all things wealth and business.
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