When a medical negligence victim decides to approach medical negligence solicitors to investigate a medical negligence claim, the victim usually have a number of questions about what is involved in making a claim. The most frequent question victim or victims asked is “how much compensation will I get”?
When a victim makes a medical negligence claim, the amount of compensation he receives is intended to put him back in the same position he would have been in, if the medical negligence not happened to him. As each medical negligence claim and each person’s circumstances are unique, there is no standard answer as to how much compensation a victim of medical negligence will receive. But yes we can discuss about some of the common factors that affect the level of compensation and they are:
• The severity of the injury
• Whether the injury is permanent or temporary
• Whether further medical treatment is required or not
• The impact of the injury i.e. whether the victim have lost his independence and now require care and assistance
• Whether victim have suffered a loss of income
• Whether victim is able to return to work or not
• Whether victim have suffered any other financial losses
In order to advise victim on the appropriate amount of compensation, your specialist Medical Negligence Solicitor will consider victim’s personal situation before the medical negligence occurred, the nature of the injury, and then analyse the impact and aftermath of the medical negligence.
How to calculate the amount of medical negligence compensation?
In medical negligence claims, the amount of compensation awarded is made up of two separate elements, these are:
(1) General Damages
The general damages element is also called as ‘Pain, Suffering and Loss of Amenity.’ It reflects the nature and severity of the injury. General damages are fixed by Judges with the usage of a tariff system. The amount of compensation is based on the medical injury and previous concluded cases involving similar injuries.
The figures for general damages compensation are often much lower than people expect. In order to identify the correct amount of general damages for victim’s injury, victim’s Medical Negligence Solicitor will obtain a report from an independent medical expert. The expert will consider your medical records, a witness statement prepared by your Medical Negligence Solicitor on your behalf, and probably examine you in order to prepare their report. The report consists of details of the injuries which is caused by the medical negligence, effect of injuries and victim’s prognosis for the future.
(2) Special Damages.
The special damages element is made up of any past and likely future financial losses and expenses caused by the negligence, like:
• Loss of earnings
• Medical expenses
• Aids and equipment
• Transport and Accommodation costs
Assuming that you have been able to prove that the medical negligence caused your injuries, your claim for past financial losses and expenses can be calculated from the receipts and invoices which evidence the losses. Your independent medical expert will be asked to consider the losses claimed and confirm that these were as a result of the negligence
Calculating future losses and expenses is more difficult. This aspect of special damages relies on the independent medical expert’s opinion on how the injuries are affecting you now, your prognosis for the future, and related financial losses you are likely to encounter in the future.