Contact with defendant

Once you have confirmed in writing that you would like us to act on your behalf, your lawyer will make contact with the defendant, generally via their insurer. This is either done via an online portal or a letter of claim, depending on the nature of your case.  Your lawyer will explain to you what the process will be on your case.

Online portal;

For many claims whose value is not likely to exceed £25,000, contact with the defendant is initially made via an online portal.  We will complete a claim notification form on your behalf, which contains information about your injury, the circumstances of your accident, the impact it has had on your life and the reasons for which the defendant is held responsible for your accident, which we will ask you to review and sign. 

It is then the defendant’s insurer’s responsibility to review the information and respond within a pre-determined period of time. 

Letter of claim;

This letter outlines the case, your injuries and financial losses you have experienced. If appropriate, your lawyer will also use the letter to request documents the defendant may hold which are relevant to your claim, or assessments you may require.

The defendant’s insurer will then have some time to investigate the claim, after which time they are obliged to contact us and confirm whether they accept or deny liability for your accident.

More Information

  1. No Insurer

    If the defendant does not have an insurer, it is their responsibility to deal with your claim. The defendant can instruct a solicitor to act on their behalf, and your lawyer will probably deal with the defendant’s solicitor throughout the case. As the defendant will be obliged to respond to your lawyer, your lawyer will advise you on how the defendant will be dealing with the case and if they have instructed a solicitor.

    Depending on the complexity of the case, the defendant may choose to represent themselves, however there are restrictions on whether the defendant can do this, which your lawyer will advise you about.

  2. Serious And Catastrophic Injury Cases

    When dealing with serious and catastrophic injury claims, your lawyer can request that the defendant’s insurer agree to (and fund) an Immediate Needs Assessment when they initially make contact. This means that a care expert visits you at home to determine what level of care you may require, medical treatments you may need, adaptations required in your home or to your way of life, potential rehabilitation programmes, and what this is likely to cost.

    This allows us to assist with your recovery and potentially request an interim payment from the defendant’s insurer to cover some of the costs of the assessment where something is immediately required.

    It assists in placing a valuation on your case and providing both sides with an idea of the medical advice required on your case and what the most appropriate way forward is.

  3. Non-Response

    If our attempted contact has not been acknowledged within a certain timeframe, your lawyer is entitled to issue court proceedings against the defendant on your behalf as the defendant will be in breach of the pre-action protocol for personal injury claims.

    Your lawyer will advise you whether there has been a response during this period, and whether court proceedings should be issued. Although you are entitled to issue proceedings, this doesn't mean that you should; your lawyer may feel it is appropriate to grant an extension of the period of time in which they respond, rather than issuing proceedings immediately. There may also be mitigating circumstances as to why the defendant has not responded in this time period.

    See the “Issue court proceedings” box and subsequent boxes on the flowchart for more information about the court process.

Next Steps

At this point the insurer will either accept liability , or deny liability

Joint Settlement Meeting Case Management Conference Directions Given Issue Court Proceedings Case Concluded Negotiation Check Evidence Seek Evidence Liability Denied Liability Accepted Letter of Claim Sent Case Taken On Court Case Settled
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Joint Settlement Meeting

In some circumstances we may need to hold a joint settlement meeting to reach a final settlement on your case.

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Case Management Conference

Once court proceedings have started, a case can have one or more case management conferences at any point before it reaches trial.  

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Directions Given

Claimants and defendants are both required to directions to the court about how the case will progress.

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Issue Court Proceedings

Usually, your lawyer will advise that it is appropriate to issue court proceedings on your case if it has reached an impasse or because your claim needs to be protected.  

 

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Case Concluded

Your case will conclude with the presiding judge making a decision on whether your claim has been successful or not.

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Negotiation

Negotiation of your case, based on the evidence presented from both sides.

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Check Evidence

Your lawyer will check received evidence for accuracy and legitimacy.

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Seek Evidence

Gathering of evidence is essential whether or not the defendant denies responsibility or not.

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Liability Denied

Denial of liabilty means the most likely next steps include gathering supporting evidence to present to the defendant.

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Liability Accepted

If the insurer accepts liability, the case can proceed to a monetary settlement.

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Letter of Claim Sent

This stage confirms in writing the case, injuries and financial losses you have suffered.

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Case Taken On

This stage will encompass your initial discussions with JMW about your case, and assessing your suitability to claim.

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Court

At this point we prepare all evidence for your court hearing.

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Case Settled

At this point you could choose to accept the defendants offer or not.

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