Personal Injury Claims for Traffic Accidents
I was told that there is no need to rush into making personal injury claims for traffic accidents, as there are three years in which to claim. Is this true?
There is a time scale for making personal injury claims for traffic accidents in the UK, which is three years from the date of the accident as stipulated by the Statute of Limitations.
The Statute of Limitations in the UK came into force in 1980 with the passing of the Limitation Act by parliament. This legal time limit gives claimants the best possible chance of making a successful claim for compensation, while also protecting a defendant from the constant fear of litigation.
However, even though the Statue of Limitations allows three years in order to initiate a claim, it would be unwise to delay making road traffic accident claims unless there was a very good reason for doing so. Delaying making road traffic accident claims is likely to be to the benefit of the defence rather than that of the claimant.
It is the responsibility of the claimant to establish and prove that a traffic accident was the result of third party negligence, and evidence of negligence is strongest closest to the time of the accident. The outcome of many traffic accident claims are determined by witness statements and evidence collected at the scene of the accident.
Memories of the course of events leading to an accident can fade very quickly so it is important that statements are taken from witnesses promptly. It is also likely that evidence present at the scene of an accident will be removed to prevent further accidents from being caused. If evidence is not collected quickly, even strong claims for traffic accident injury compensation are likely to weaken.
There are situations when delaying personal injury claims for traffic accidents may be called for, such as when an accident victim has sustained a serious head injury and the full extent of damage has yet to be determined. It may therefore make sense to delay making a claim for traffic accident injury compensation until doctors have been able to determine the long term health implications of an injury. In cases such as this, although a claim may be delayed, the collection of evidence of third party negligence still needs to be completed promptly.
You should not make the decision to delay making a road traffic accident claims without first seeking the professional opinion of a personal injury solicitor, and you should contact a solicitor for legal advice about making a claim for a road traffic accident as soon as possible. This will ensure your claim for compensation has the maximum probability of being successful.