Over the last twenty or so years, a lot of so called “personal injury specialists” have appeared in both the press and online.
The claim to this title is seldom qualified or supported, save that some will boast about the amount of settlements and the limited timescales involved. Hurray!
When a client contacts a solicitor about an injury claim, the first job is to assess that client’s urgent needs.
They might need physiotherapy, or some psychological therapy. They might need money urgently, or even simply another vehicle providing for them. They might need the repairs on their car paying for or perhaps some domestic help regarding childcare, or maybe just the cleaning. All these problems can add to the worries that occur after injury.
We at St Helens Law pride ourselves that we look at the client and his or her needs rather than look at the injury or the accident circumstances. A little care taken early on can minimise losses suffered and reduce the effects of the injury on day to day life.
Time and again we come across clients who have been advised by other firms that have simply left clients to their own devices. Imagine the surprise of the client who had waited six months for NHS treatment on his knee injury only to be told on his first appointment with SHL that he could see the same consultant next week privately and that the insurers would pay for it.
Today, a client has called frustrated by the fact that the local NHS Trust will take three months to provide Cognitive Behavioural Therapy. She has now been referred to a private practitioner whose fees are again being paid by the insurers. These are not isolated cases. Insurers are delighted to pay for private treatment as it speeds up recovery and in some cases reduces the legal fees and also the damages payable by them.
Just before the end of the year, we arranged for an insurer to fund alterations to the home of a badly injured client so that he was self sufficient in relation to bathing. That same client also had a cleaner and carer provided as well at the insurer’s expense.
The same client was provided with an alternate vehicle so that he could travel on his own to medical appointments. The provision of an alternate vehicle nowadays is quite standard.
You, as a claimant, might be happy just to receive the cheque. Perhaps though there is more to being a “Personal Injury Specialist” than they are telling us.