Personal injury

We have extensive experience in dealing with accident claims on behalf of our clients.

If you have been involved in an accident which was not your fault you may be entitled to claim compensation.

Common types of compensation claims are for accidents at work, slips and trips and accidents abroad.

However, the most common type of compensation claims are for road traffic accidents.

All road users owe a duty to all other road users to take reasonable care when on the road. Unfortunately, no matter how careful our clients are, there are always those who do not drive with the same level of caution.

It is a legal requirement that all drivers must have insurance. However, even in the rare event that the driver of the vehicle does not have insurance we may still be able to assist.

We can assist our clients where they have been involved in accidents involving:

  • Cars;
  • Taxis;
  • Trains;
  • Lorries; and
  • Motorcycles.

Should you think that you have a personal injury claim then please contact us on 01274 924200 or email us at personalinjury@bakerreign.co.uk and a member of our personal injury team will contact you.


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Injuries

Even with minor injuries our clients may still face a period of recovery and pain which is through no fault of theirs. Therefore, each accident has a different impact upon each of our clients and we adopt a bespoke and thoughtful approach in each matter to assist our clients with their recovery.

More often than not the most common type of injury from a road traffic accident is whiplash. Whiplash is a soft tissue injury which is caused by a sudden jolting of the head when the impact occurs. The symptoms can include neck pain, shoulder pain, lower back pain, headaches and sensations in the arms. These can occur either instantly or over the days following the accident. Although these may be the common types of injuries suffered in a road traffic accident there are a number of other injuries which could occur. These other types of injuries could include broken bones, bruises or psychological injuries. These types of injuries occur more often in serious vehicle, motorcycle and pedestrian injury claims.

When looking at bringing a claim there are a number of factors to consider.

Duties of the road user

A duty is owed by each road user to take reasonable care to avoid causing damage to others who are either using or present on the highway. Therefore this duty not only covers other drivers but also passengers, pedestrians, cyclists and owners of property on the highway.

When considering the duty of care owed by the road user the standard is that of an ordinary driver and therefore no allowance is made for an inexperienced or learner driver. As such road users must anticipate that others may not have this level of skill, experience or care.

Proving negligence and common types of accidents

Usually most road traffic accident are pursued as a result of another road user’s negligence. Therefore, primarily it must be established whether or not the other road user breached the standard of care that they owed to the other road users. Whilst considering the required standard of care the Courts will have to consider the highway code. If the highway code has been breached then this is likely to be relied upon for establishing liability. However, the liability of the driver will need to be examined in each case.

The defence of the driver

Often the defence will plead that the injured party contributed towards the drivers negligence. This is referred to as contributory negligence. As an example of what might be argued by the defence is that it may be the case that the injured party was not wearing a seat belt. By not wearing a seatbelt the injuries sustained by the injured party were greater than if they had been wearing a seatbelt. Thereby contributing towards the negligence of the driver. If the injured party has been contributory negligence then this usually results in a reduction of their damages.

Road users

As well as other vehicle users there are a number of other road users including pedestrians, children, motorcyclists and cyclists. All users of the highway are under the same duty of care to ensure that they act in such a reasonable manner to ensure that they do not injury another. Ascertaining the level of the duty of care of each road user requires an analysis of the highway code and also case law.

Insurance

All motor vehicle road users must hold a valid insurance policy which at least covers personal injury or death to a third party. In instances where the negligent driver is covered by an insurance policy then the injured party can issues proceedings directly against the negligent driver’s insurer.

Uninsured and untraceable drivers

In cases where there is a negligent uninsured and untraceable driver a claim may be brought for compensation to the Motor Insurance Bureau (“MIB”).

The MIB is a fund towards which all authorised insurers contribute which pays out in the event that a driver is either uninsured or untraceable.

The claim would be pursued against the uninsured driver and the compensation would be recovered pursuant to the Uninsured Drivers Agreement 1999 (“UDA 1999”). The MIB would then satisfy the judgement as long as all of the requirements of the UDA 1999 have been complied with.