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Frequently Asked Questions


In case you have a question the best way to have it answered is to complete one of our call back forms or call our team on 0800 122 3130 so that the facts we provide are specific to your exact enquiry. There isn’t a cost for speaking to us and you are under no obligation to pursue a claim, call us today and see if we may help.

We do however find that we’re asked a number of questions quite regularly and with any luck you will find the answers below useful.

I'm already with another firm of solicitors, may I transfer my case to you?
Yes, is the short answer. If you think that the service you are receiving from your current solicitors doesn’t meet your requirements we can arrange for the file to be transferred free of charge to you. If we feel that we can move the file we would usually agree to pay your current solicitors their costs when claim settles .
Do I have to go to a doctor's evaluation?
While some cases do settle not needing a medical report, most of our clients do have to attend medical examination. This really is nothing to worry about and is there to safeguard you to guarantee that the settlement you receive reflects the full extent of your injury. We usually make sure that the medical assessment is as close to you as possible and you’ll get plenty of advanced warning.
Will I have to attend Court?
The majority of claims we take on settle without the need to go to Court. We will never guarantee that you won’t have to go to Court as ultimately a lot depends on the Defendant’s behaviour and conduct but it’s unlikely. If your case does go to Court rest assured we’ll be with you all the way and will guide you through each step of the process.
Will I have to cope with lots of paperwork?
We do try and keep all forms to a minimum. At the start of your claim we will need to get a few papers signed but some of these can be signed via e-mail if you want or alternatively we are able to arrange someone from our claims team to see you at home and go through everything with you so that you know exactly what is happening. Throughout the case we’re happy to accept more information from you over the phone instead of expecting you to write to us.
How long will it take for the case to settle?
This can be often a very difficult question to answer because it very much depends on the type of case and the circumstances. Some of our claims end in just a few weeks whilst others may take significantly longer. When you speak to us we will be able to give you a fairly accurate time scale once we have some more details from you.
What happens if I do not have their details?
We do encounter this a lot. Our lawyers are experts in their field and more frequently than not they are able to trace the Defendant from the information you give them. The earlier you call us the better the chance we have in tracking them down.
What are the time limits for bringing a case?
Because of the conditions of the Limitation Act you must start legal proceedings inside 36 months of the injury taking place. Under limited situations this limit could be lengthened so even if you believe you could be outside this time limit you should still call us to see if we can help. The 3 year guideline is especially challenging in industrial disease cases as often the victim is not aware of their condition until quite a few years after the work ends, contact us for guidance to ensure that you do not lose out on your rightful compensation.
Will I have to pay any fees?
In April 2013 the way accident injury claims are funded and taken care of changed as a result of the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act. The act dramatically altered the amount of legal expenses that lawyers can recover from the losing party and greatly altered the ‘no win no fee’ structure that solicitors have used for many years to ensure that victims of negligence get their rightful damages.

In the new guidelines Mercury Legal Online will continue to fight for the rights of those hurt of injured through no-fault of their own with no risk to yourself. The latest rules can be confusing and hard to grasp but be assured that when you speak to us you will not be asked to pay any costs whatsoever in advance and even if your claim is not successful through no fault of your own you’ll never be asked to pay anything to us.

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GPs claim medical negligence lawsuits are bringing service to its knees

The increasing costs of medical negligence lawsuits are having direct and devastating consequences on Britain’s General Practitioner service, according to a new survey. The government says that it needs to recruit 5,000 new GPs by 2020 to cope with demand of the increasing workload, but this year has seen the number of GPs falling by 100 per month. Whereas doctors in hospitals have their insurance premiums paid by the hospital or hospital trust for which they work, in the case of GPs the responsibility lies on them to pay their own premiums and some say that they are now paying up to a fifth of their pre-tax income on insurance. According to the BMA (British Medical Association) GP’s pay has reduced by 11 per cent in real terms since 2008. At the same time the annual rise of insurance premiums has averaged 10 per cent, and it continues to rise as the costs of medical negligence cases increase. So is it right to sue the NHS? The vast majority of doctors, nurses and health professionals in the UK are highly qualified, caring people who want to help others in the best way that they can. Many work in high-pressure situations and make the difference between life and death on a daily basis. It is incredibly rare that incidents happen due to malice or general incompetence, but if mistakes are made in someone’s care, and those mistakes go on to leave the patient in a worse state than when they arrived to receive care, then someone has to be responsible. In some cases it might be an issue with machinery... read more

Maternity blunders push NHS negligence payouts to £1billion

Last year the National Health Service paid out more than £1billion in damages for medical negligence. This was a record high amount and was in part fuelled by blunders during childbirth that have soared in recent years. Patient groups said that the figures illustrate the desperate need for improved safety within hospitals. The amount paid out by the NHS for medical and clinical negligence cases has almost doubled since 2010, with a large proportion of the costs going to pay solicitors’ fees. Chief Executive of the charity Action against Medical Accidents; Peter Walsh, said the NHS was spending far too much on litigation because it was failing to improve its own safety record, and spending too much fighting cases that it should not defend. “Most of these costs would be avoided if the NHS investigated incidents better, recognised when they were at fault, and settled claims earlier.” Many of the most expensive claims involved babies who were left brain-damaged at birth for whom the payouts involve the costs of care for the rest of their life. In some cases when things go wrong, a simple apology can resolve the situation. In other more serious cases, doctors and other medical professionals who fail in their duty of care can be disciplined, or even struck off from performing their duties. It is when mistakes are made and serious injuries or life-changing events occur that you might feel the need to take the compensation route, and that is when you need a team of experienced medical negligence solicitors to help you get the compensation you deserve; not only due to the intricate... read more

Mother sues hospital after baby son left disabled

The mother of a child who was left severely disabled after developing a critical illness just hours after his birth is taking legal action against the Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust. Reverend Charlotte Cheshire’s son Adam was born at the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital in March 2011 but after just eight hours he was fighting for his life. He had developed Group B Strep, one of the most common causes of life-threatening illness in newborn babies in the UK. When he was eight hours old nurses noticed that he breathing was abnormal and that he was making grunting sounds while being unable to feed. At this stage he should have been transferred to the hospital’s neonatal unit for antibiotics to treat the condition, however this did not happen until seven hours later. Experts believe that if the condition had been identified sooner, Adam may not have suffered to the extent that he did. Adam, now aged six, has been left profoundly disabled with visual and hearing impairments as well as autism and delayed development, and his Mum is now taking legal action against the hospital trust. Speaking about the situation she said “ Adam, at six years old has cost the NHS a great deal of money and will continue to do so for the rest of his life. All any parent wants for their child is for them to live a full and happy life, but Adam needs round-the-clock care and will continue to do so for the rests of his life.” Although harmless to the women who carry it, Group B Strep can be fatal for babies,... read more