Work Accident Solicitor: Claim Your Legal Costs In Addition To Personal Injury Compensation
In this article we explain what your work accident solicitor’s legal costs are made up; how to fund your legal costs win or lose and how you can claim your solicitor’s costs as part of your personal injury compensation claim.
We conclude with how your solicitor covers any risk of you having to meet your employer’s legal costs should you lose or discontinue your claim.
- Work Accident Solicitor: Claim Your Legal Costs In Addition To Personal Injury Compensation
- What are your work accident solicitor costs made up of?
- Your lawyer’s legal fees
- Legal expenses incurred by your solicitor on your behalf
- How can you fund your work accident solicitor’s costs to make your claim?
- Can you claim your solicitor’s costs from your employer as part of your claim?
- Who pays your employer’s legal costs?
- What risks do you have of paying your own solicitor’s costs in pursuing your claim?
- Work Accident Solicitor Costs Summary & Next Steps
- What are your work accident solicitor costs made up of?
What are your work accident solicitor costs made up of?
There are two main types of expenses which will form part of your UK work accident solicitor costs, which include:
Your lawyer’s legal fees
Your work accident solicitors legal fees are set at an hourly rate – normally referred to as a charge rate.
This is a charge for the amount of time spent by your solicitor working on your claim – including submitting your claim; obtaining evidence to support your claim; obtaining medical evidence setting out your injuries; dealing with yourself and the opposition and liaising with and attending at court on your behalf, etc.
Legal expenses incurred by your solicitor on your behalf
As part of your work accident solicitor costs – certain expenses will be included, known as disbursements.
Disbursements are expenses your lawyer makes no profit on, but pays out on your behalf.
Examples of disbursements
Such expenses include: the cost of obtaining copies of your GP notes (this sum is paid to your GP); the cost of obtaining copies of your hospital notes (paid to the relevant NHS trust), the cost of obtaining a medical report describing your work injuries from a medical consultant (monies paid to the consultant).
There are in addition, other expenses your solicitor will have to incur, such as court fees (should your claim have to be issued at court).
How can you fund your work accident solicitor’s costs to make your claim?
Do not be concerned – you will be pleased to know that there are a number of ways to fund your work accident solicitor costs in pursuing your compensation claim.
See our no win no fee / conditional fee agreement article – for an explanation of how a no win no fee (technically known as a conditional fee agreement) operates as well as alternative funding agreements, such as legal protection cover.
Can you claim your solicitor’s costs from your employer as part of your claim?
“Yes” – in England and Wales in addition to your compensation for work injury, you are entitled to claim the majority of your solicitor’s costs of making your claim. This sum will include not only your lawyer’s fees, but also the disbursement expenses your solicitor has incurred on your behalf.
Be aware – at the time of writing this article, you can claim the majority of your legal costs from your employer (subject to a small deduction for unrecovered legal costs), so long as the personal injury part of your claim (known as general damages) is worth over the small claims limit (currently set at £1,500).
Remember – your solicitor will advise you whether the nature of your work injuries are such that your claim will be calculated over the small claims limit. Typically a solicitor will only offer a no win no fee agreement if your claim is beyond this limit.
Who pays your employer’s legal costs?
If you win your claim – your employer pays their own lawyer’s fees of defending your claim.
Because there is always a risk that you may lose your claim – your solicitor will typically put in place an After The Event Insurance Policy / ATE.
An After The Event Insurance will cover you for any costs that you may have to pay your employer’s solicitor should you lose your claim or have to abandon your claim.
Watch out – an ATE policy will often cover repayment of legal disbursements your solicitor may have incurred on your behalf as part of the claim.
Remember – you may have commenced your claim using a Before The Event Insurance policy, such as by using legal protection cover on household contents insurance. This will typically meet your solicitor’s costs and the opposition costs should you lose – caped at a certain amount.
What risks do you have of paying your own solicitor’s costs in pursuing your claim?
So long as your work claims solicitor has properly advised you, put in place all the necessary funding agreements, such as a “no win no fee” and you have provided an honest account of the accident event and your injuries – there is no real risk.
You can make your claim without incurring legal fees.
Remember – when your claim has concluded there can be a small percentage deduction from your compensation (for a portion of legal costs your employer’s insurers do not have to pay).
Work Accident Solicitor Costs Summary & Next Steps
In this article – we have shown how to make a claim without having to pay either your solicitor’s legal costs or that of your employer’s solicitors (so long as your work claims solicitor has properly advised you and put in place all the necessary funding agreements).
Our work related accident solicitor article describes the considerations you should take into account when choosing a workplace injury lawyer
Free Legal Help From Our Specialist Solicitors
We offer a number of specialist solicitor free online / telephone legal help options – you can ask an online question, have your claim assessed, request a callback or phone direct to discuss your work accident circumstances and the best funding options available to you should you wish to proceed with a claim.