Funding your clinical negligence claim
The initial meeting to discuss your medical negligence claim, whether it concerns a claim to sue the NHS or a private medical institution, is normally free.
At this meeting, we discuss in detail the various options for funding a clinical / medical negligence compensation claim. We always take the time to discuss the funding options in a careful and clear way so that our clients fully understand the funding arrangements before they instruct us to represent them.
The funding options are
- Public funding (legal aid)
- ‘No win, no fee’ agreements
- Legal expense insurance
- Private funding
Legal aid (public funding)
It may be possible for your clinical negligence claim to be publicly funded. SheridanLaw (formerly known as Sheridan & Co) has been accredited by the Legal Services Commission to undertake clinical negligence work. This means that SheridanLaw is one of the relatively few firms that can obtain public funding (formerly, legal aid) for eligible clients who have clinical negligence claims and claims to sue the NHS. There are complex criteria to assess whether someone is eligible for public funding in a medical negligence claim to sue the NHS or a private doctor or other medical practitioner. We will discuss this with you when considering funding options.
‘No win, no fee’ (conditional fee agreements)
Where we feel you have a meritorious claim, we may agree to take your case on a conditional fee basis, also known as ‘no win, no fee'. Our usual conditional fee agreements for claims to sue the NHS or private doctors work as follows:
- If the claim is unsuccessful you will not normally have to pay for the time we have spent on the case.
- If the claim is successful the other side, in addition to paying your compensation, will usually pay most of our fees.
- It will normally be appropriate to take out insurance to protect you from the risk of having to pay the other side’s costs (known as ‘after the event’ insurance). This can be structured in a way that does not cost you anything, as the insurance premium can fall within the ‘no win, no fee’ agreement.
Conditional fee arrangements are often an excellent way to fund a case at no, or limited, cost to the client, but they are also complex and can be difficult to understand. We will discuss them with you in a clear and detailed way when considering the best way to fund your case.
Legal expense insurance
Some Household and Motor Insurance policies include limited Legal Expense Insurance which may cover personal injury claims. We will assist you in reviewing your insurance policies to assess whether you have suitable coverage
Some clients bringing a medical negligence claim to sue the NHS or a private doctor or hospital decide to pay us privately, by hourly fee. If you instruct us on this basis, we will give clear estimates of costs and agree expenditure caps where appropriate.