Medical Negligence Claims

Medical Negligence Claims

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For a no-obligation discussion, call our specialist Personal Injury Solicitors on 01642 247656, email us at or use our contact form, and we will call you back.

What is medical negligence?

Medical negligence (or clinical negligence) can occur when a medical professional fails in their duty of care owed to you and causes you to suffer an injury (or makes an existing condition worse).

When you receive medical advice or treatment you should expect those treating you to act in accordance with certain professional standards, as you are owed a duty of care. If that standard falls below an acceptable level, and you suffer injury as a result then you may well be entitled to financial compensation.

Simply put, to make a successful personal injury claim, you will need to prove:

  • that an individual, company or organisation (who caused your injury) owed you a duty of care;
  • that the duty was breached; and
  • that you suffered an injury as a result of the breach of duty.

While this may seem a little daunting, our highly experienced Personal Injury Lawyers are on hand to assess your enquiry and answer any questions you may have. We will advise you on the prospects of successfully making a Personal Injury Claim and explain the next steps.

What type of incident can you claim for?

If you have suffered an injury as a result of the following, you may be able to start a medical negligence claim:

  • Medical misdiagnosis (for example, there is a failure to follow up with routine scans and checks which has led to you developing an illness or disease)
  • Surgical negligence (a routine operation that has gone wrong)
  • Hospital negligence (for example, hospital equipment failure)
  • Prescription error
    • Were you prescribed the wrong drugs by your GP; or did the GP fail to prescribe drugs causing you to suffer injury or illness?
    • Did the pharmacy dispense the wrong medicine without your realising, which then caused you to become unwell?
  • Medical negligence found by a Coroner in an Inquest

If you have suffered injury or illness as a result of poor medical treatment contact us as soon as possible and we can advise on whether or not you should pursue a claim, how best to go about it, how much it might be worth, whether we can act under a conditional fee agreement (No win no fee), and if necessary pursue court proceedings for you, in order to secure just and appropriate compensation.

How long do you have to make a personal injury claim?

It is important that you don’t wait too long before starting your medical negligence claim. This is because there are strict deadlines as to when claims must be made. This is legally known as the ‘limitation date’. Details of the various limitations are contained within the ‘Limitation Act 1980’. Most personal injury claims must be made within three years of the accident or incident.

However, in some medical negligence claims, you may not become immediately aware that you have suffered an injury or illness due as a result of the wrongdoing of another, especially if you have not been properly diagnosed or treated. Therefore, the three-year time limit may start from the date you became aware that you have suffered an injury as a result of a breach of duty owed to you. This is often referred to as the ‘date of knowledge’.

When determining the date of knowledge, a Judge will consider all the circumstances of your case to establish when it would have been ‘reasonable’ for you to start making enquiries and make your claim.

This does not mean that you must settle your claim before the limitation date. Essentially, you must ensure that your claim is filed with the Court before the expiry of the limitation. Once your claim has been properly issued against all Defendants, it is unlikely that you will need to take any further steps in relation to limitation.

If you do not issue your claim in advance of the limitation date, it is likely that the Defendant will argue that your claim has been issued out of time. A Judge may also throw your case out of Court as you have failed to comply with the laws of limitation and you will be ‘statute barred’. This means you will not be allowed to take any further legal action in relation to that particular medical negligence claim.

You may be able to make a medical negligence claim after the limitation has passed. However, you can only usually do this in exceptional circumstances. Even then, there is no guarantee that you will be able to bring your claim after the limitation has passed.

We recommend you seek advice as soon as possible to ensure that action can be taken in advance of any limitation deadline. Medical negligence claim time limits and limitation dates can be complex. However, our highly experienced lawyers can assess the limitation date and advise you on your next steps.

Contact Us

Our specialist personal injury lawyers at Watson Woodhouse Solicitors are available for a free, no-obligation consultation so we can answer any further questions you have.

For more information about how Watson Woodhouse Solicitors can help you start a personal injury claim,  call our specialist Personal Injury Solicitors on 01642 247656, email us at or use our contact form, and we will call you back.

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