If you’ve been injured in a car accident that wasn’t your fault, you may be eligible to make a car accident claim for compensation. Irrespective of whether you were driving the car, suffered whiplash as a passenger, or are a pedestrian injured in a collision, you could be compensated for your injuries, anxiety, your medical expenses, lost income, lost potential future income, and other related expenses that are directly due to the car accident
In this guide to car accident claims, we’ll look at when claiming compensation might be possible, the types of injuries commonly suffered in road accidents that you could be compensated for, and what level of compensation might be due.
Our team specialise in helping car crash victims understand their options by providing a no-obligation telephone assessment as well as free legal advice. Should your claim appear to have strong enough grounds, we could appoint your case to one of our No Win No Fee personal injury solicitors.
If you’re ready to start a car accident claim today, simply call us on 0800 6524 881 to get started. Otherwise, please carry on reading.
Jump to a Section
- Are You Eligible To Make A Car Accident Compensation Claim?
- What Evidence Might I Need For A Car Accident Claim?
- Common Types Of Car Accidents Leading To Compensation Claims
- How Much Compensation Can I Claim For A Car Accident?
- Car Accident Compensation Calculator
- Average Car Accident Payout Amounts
- Is There A Car Accident Claim Time Limit?
- Why Choose Our Car Accident Claims Solicitors?
As our personal injury solicitors process car accident claims on a No Win No Fee basis, they have to assess the likelihood of the case being won before accepting it. That’s because if they don’t win compensation for you, their fees won’t be paid. Therefore, before taking a claim on, they are likely to check whether:
- The other road user owed the claimant a duty of care (which is almost always true); and
- Some form of negligence meant that duty was broken and a car accident was caused; and
- The claimant sustained injuries because of the accident.
If you’re unsure of your eligibility to claim, call our advisors and they’ll be able to answer any questions you have.
In a moment, we’ll look at some common types of car accidents that can lead to a claim. Before we do that, let’s review what evidence you could obtain to help win your car accident claim. Evidence can include:
- Dash cam footage. Footage from dash cams can make proving what happened a lot easier in a car accident compensation claim. CCTV footage could be requested as well if the scene was covered by security cameras.
- Medical evidence. We strongly suggest that you attend A&E or a minor injuries unit to have any injuries treated following an RTA. Following treatment, medical records could help to prove how serious your injuries were.
- After a car accident happens, it’s a good idea to try and take photographs before any vehicles are moved if possible.
- Witness details. An independent view of what happened could help to substantiate your claim if the other driver’s insurance company denies liability for your accident or injuries.
- Other driver’s details. Swap details with the other driver. You’ll need their contact details, registration details, and insurance policy number. Importantly, you should not admit liability or say anything that even suggests you admit liability at the accident scene.
More detailed guidance on what to do generally following a car accident can be found on the AA’s website here.
Once you’ve obtained as much evidence as you can, it may be worth a quick call to our free advice line. An advisor will review your case with you, look at the evidence and let you know your options, and what we can do to get more evidence if required. They could even refer you to one of our specialist No Win No Fee solicitors at the same time.
As mentioned above, you can only claim for injuries sustained in a car accident if somebody else’s negligence caused it. So, what common types of car accidents generally lead to compensation claims? Here are some examples:
- Careless/Dangerous driving. This can include driving too fast or driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. If a loved one has been fatally injured due to dangerous driving, you may find this page useful.
- Excessive speed. If the other driver was breaking the permitted speed limit, a claim might be possible for any injuries that results.
- Car accidents can often be caused where the other driver was too busy dealing with their radio, satnav, phone, or devices that distract them from the road ahead.
- Pulling out at junctions. You could be eligible to claim compensation if you were hit by a vehicle pulling out from a junction because the other driver had misjudged their distance from you.
- Reckless driving. A claim may be possible if the other driver was showing off, breaking heavily, or committed a road-rage style offence.
It is possible to claim for any type of injury sustained in a car accident that wasn’t your fault. Some of the more common injuries, however, include:
- Head, back, neck, multiple injuries.
- Soft tissue damage.
- Broken bones.
- Cuts, abrasions or bruises.
- Knee injuries.
*A Note On Whiplash Claims
Government reforms have changed the way in which whiplash claims are handled. For low-value whiplash injuries caused by RTAs, a new government portal has been introduced so you can deal with the claim yourself. We would suggest that you check what the value of your claim might be with our advisors and they’ll advise you which claims path you should follow.
How much compensation you can claim for a car accident can vary drastically, as with most types of accident claims. This is simply because, realistically, not every driver, pedestrian, or passenger injured in a car accident will suffer in the same way. Instead, compensation will be calculated by your solicitor based upon two types of damages. There are:
- General damages. The part of your car accident claim that is based on the severity of your injuries.
- Special damages. Compensation that’s designed to repay any financial costs you’ve incurred. Examples include lost income, personal property damage, care costs, medical expenses, and travel costs.
To check what you could include in your car accident compensation claim, please check with one of our specialists today.
We’ve added a car accident compensation calculator in this section so you can see what level of damages could be awarded for your injuries. The figures we’ve supplied are based upon those used by our solicitors and other legal professionals and come from the Judicial College.
Although we have provided these compensation estimates for car crash claims, please bear in mind that settlement amounts could be lower or higher. Once your claim has been assessed, a solicitor will provide a more personalised estimate once they receive your medical reports back.
Below is a table that displays the average compensation payout amounts for various injury claims including car accident injury. The description acts as a guide to show how the different compensation amounts for various areas of the body that have been affected can vary depending on the severity of the injuries.
|Achilles Injury||Most Serious||In the vicinity of £36,060||A severed achilles tendon, restricted ankle movement.|
|Achilles Injury||Serious||£23,460 - £28,240||A complete division of the achilles tendon has been repaired succesfully but has left some disability with no further improvement likely.|
|Achilles Injury||Moderate||£11,820 - £19,770||Partial rupture of the achilles tendon/significant injury. Considered factors include treatment required, level of pain and suffering, any disability.|
|Achilles Injury||Mild||£6,820 - £11,820||Some damage to the achilles tendon where support to the ankle may be affected.|
|Ankle Injury||Extremely Severe||£46,980 - £65,420||The most severe ankle injuries that may cause deformity, degeneration of joints, and potentially amputation.|
|Ankle Injury||Moderate to Severe||£12,900 - £46,980||Fractures, extensive treatment, disability are just a few factors that will be considered when calculating the level of compensation for ankle injuries in this bracket.|
|Ankle Injury||Mild||Up to £12,900||Less serious ankle injuries such as ankle fractures, ankle sprains. Factors considered would be amount of recovery time, aching, scarring etc.|
|Arm Injury||Extremely Severe||£90,250 - £281,520||This range of compensation covers the amputation of both complete arms, the amputation of a single arm, or whether an arm is amputated partially or completely. Future restrictions will also be considered.|
|Arm Injury||Severe||£36,770 - £122,860||For major restriction and disability present in one or both the arms and causes significant pain and suffering.|
|Arm Injury||Less Severe||£18,020 - £36,770||The range shown is set for persons who have suffered a restriction in movement and/or disability in the arms but there is substantial recovery. Simple forearm fractures would expect to be at the lower end of the bracket.|
|Back Injury||Severe||£36,390- £151,070||Severe injury to the upper or lower back, possibly causing paralysis or any relating issues to organs in the lower parts of the body.|
|Back Injury||Moderate||£11,730 - £36,390||This range of compensation amounts might cover a wide range of back injuries such as compression of the lumbar vertebrae, ligament or soft tissue damage, any constant pain and/or any discomfort.|
|Back Injury||Mild||Up to £11,730||For less serious back injuries such as strains and sprains, soft tissue injuries, a slipped disc, muscle pain. Factors such as recovery time and treatment would also be considered.|
|Ear Injury||Extremely Severe||£85,170 - £102,890||Complete loss of hearing because of the injury.|
|Ear Injury||Moderate to Severe||£29,380 - £42,730||Complete hearing loss in one of the ears. The final compensation amount will depend on how the hearing loss affects the person.|
|Ear Injury||Mild||£££'s - £42,730||This range of compensation is awarded for hearing loss in one or both ears and for those that now suffer with tinnitus because of the injury or the work environment.|
|Elbow Injury||Extremely Severe||£36,770 - £51,460||Total restriction in elbow movement that has now caused a disability or that has needed surgery.|
|Elbow Injury||Less Severe||£14,690 - £30,050||Because of the injury to the elbow there is now restriction of movement in the arm but doesn't cause significant disability and major surgery is not required.|
|Elbow Injury||Mild||Up to - £11,820||An injury to the elbow that is mild to moderate which now causes pain but total movement will be possible.|
|Eye Injury||Extremely Severe||£51,460 - £252,180||Loss of sight in one eye and some loss in the other, or loss of sight in both eyes will receive the maximum compensation.|
|Eye Injury||Moderate to Severe||£8,550 - £51,460||This range of injury compensation is awarded with very restricted vision in a single eye or loss of sight in one eye.|
|Eye Injury||Mild||£2,070 - £8,200||Pain in an eye, vision problems or temporary loss of vision in an eye.|
|Eye Injury||Temporary||£2,070 - £3,710||Temporary eye injuries where full recovery takes but a few weeks.|
|Facial Scarring||Very Severe||£27,940 - £91,350||Facial disfigurement and severe scarring might warrant somewhere in this range of injury compensation. The severity of the injury shall determine how much compensation is awarded.|
|Facial Scarring||Less Severe||£16,860 - £45,440||Facial disfigurement is substantial and there is significant psychological damage.|
|Facial Scarring||Significant||£8,550 - £28,240||Plastic surgery has reduced the worst scarring but not all and any psychological damage is not considered significant.|
|Facial Scarring||Mild to Less Significant||£1,600 - £12,900||These amounts cover what might be considered trivial scars to less severe scarring.|
|Face Injury||Mild to Severe||£2,180 - £34,480||This compensation range covers simple fractures to multiple fractures and breaks to the facial area, for example the nose.|
|Finger Injury||Severe Fractures||Up to - £34,480||This compensation range covers severe fractures where the consequences might include loss/impairment of grip, deformities, partial amputation, reduced mechanical function.|
|Finger Injury||Amputation of Terminal Phalanges to Index/Middle Fingers||In the vicinity of £23,460||Where there is impaired grip, restriction of movement, scarring.
|Finger Injury||Amputation of Ring & Little Fingers||In the vicinity of £20,480||Amputation of ring and little fingers.|
|Finger Injury||Serious Injury to Ring/Middle Fingers||£13,970 - £15,330||Breaks/fractures to ring/middle fingers, serious tendon damage, deformity, permanent loss of grip/dexterity.|
|Finger Injury||Total/Partial Loss of Index Finger||£11,420 - £17,590||The upper end of the range of compensation will likely be paid for the total loss of the finger.|
|Finger Injury||Broken/Fractured Index Finger||£8,550 - £11,490||Where grip remains impaired and pain from heavy use, likelihood of osteoarthritis.|
|Finger Injury||Little Finger Amputation||£8,110 - £11,480||Amputation of a little finger.|
|Finger Injury||Minor||Up to - £4,461||Minor finger injuries e.g. hairline fractures, minor scarring.|
|Foot Injury||Extremely Severe||£78,800 - £189,110||This range covers the amputation of one or both feet and how it might affect the persons life.|
|Foot Injury||Moderate to Severe||£12,900 - £65,710||Severe injury to one or both feet that causes restriction, fractures or disability to the foot.|
|Foot Injury||Mild||Up to £12,900||Covering injury to a foot that will recover.|
|Hand Injury||Extremely Severe||£132,040 - £189,110||This range of compensation amounts shall cover the amputation of one or both hands or if a hand is made completely useless due to the injury.|
|Hand Injury||Very Severe||£90,250 - £102,890||Injuries such as the total or effective loss of one hand that has been crushed and then amputated, or most of the palm and all fingers have been amputated.|
|Hand Injury||Severe||£27,220 - £85,170||Injuries in this range might include finger amputations, major loss in function.|
|Hand Injury||Less Severe||£13,570 - £27,220||Crush injuries to the hand, penetrating wounds, deep lacerations. The upper end of the bracket would be in cases where the claimant has been left unable to use a hand properly.|
|Hand Injury||Moderate||£5,260 - £12,460||Moderate crushing injuries, deep lacerations, penetration wounds.|
|Hand Injury||Minor||Up to £4,461||Minor soft tissue damage, penetration wounds, crush injuries where recovery time is usually 6 months or less.|
|Head Injury||Extremely Severe||£264,650 - £379,100||Victims who are unresponsive due to severe brain damage and are unresponsive or what might be referred to as a vegetative state.|
|Head Injury||Moderately Severe||£205,580 - £264,650||Serverely disabled from brain damage, lost feeling in limbs, change in personality and/or a mental disability.|
|Head Injury||Moderate||£40,410 - £205,580||Cases where memory may be affected with a reduced ability to work to more severe cases where there is no chance of being able to work, change in personality, high risk of epilepsy.|
|Head Injury||Less Severe||£14,380 - £40,410||There may still be some issues such as an affected memory or a slight chance of epilepsy but overall a good recovery has been made. Factors considered include any disability, severity of the original injury.|
|Head Injury||Mild||£2,070 - £11,980||Head injuries which haven't caused brain damage or very minimal brain damage but the head injury might still have lasting effects.|
|Hip/Pelvis Injury||Severest||£73,580 - £122,860||Extremely severe injury involving multiple fractures of the pelvis which leads to other significant disability such as hip deformities, sexual dysfunction.|
|Hip/Pelvis Injury||Severe||£58,100 - £73,580||Very severe injury to the pelvis , examples being fractures and dislocations that may involve issues such as impotence or traumatic myositis ossificans.|
|Hip/Pelvis Injury||Less Severe||£36,770 - £49,270||Injury that leads to degenerative changes, leg instability, problems walking, possible future surgeries.|
|Hip/Pelvis Injury||Significant||£24,950 - £36,770||Severe hip injury but any disability isn't major.|
|Hip/Pelvis Injury||Less Significant||£11,820 - £24,950||Surgery to the hip or hip replacement, continuing symptoms deemed more severe than minor.|
|Hip/Pelvis Injury||Moderate||£3,710 - £11,820||Injuries that may have led to minor or no lasting disability.|
|Hip/Pelvis Injury||Minor||Up to £3,710||Soft tissue injuries that will heal completely.|
|Knee Injury||Severe||£24,580 - £90,290||Disability because of a knee injury, major damage to muscles, muscle wastage and soft tissue damage.|
|Knee Injury||Moderate||Up to £24,580||Minor disability because of the knee injury, damage to the muscle, cartilage, soft tissue injury, that causes pain and suffering.|
|Leg Injury||Extremely Severe||£91,950 - £264,650||Amputation of one or both legs. The compensation range also takes into consideration should the leg have been amputated below or above the knee.|
|Leg Injury||Moderate to Severe||£26,050 - £90,320||Injuries to the leg which has caused restriction in movement and disability that might have a life long prognosis.|
|Leg Injury||Less Severe||Up to £26,050||From simple leg fractures, breaks or soft tissue damage which has affected the muscle to leg fractures with an incomplete recovery.|
|Neck Injury||Extremely Severe||£42,680 - £139,210||Very severe neck injuries, those causing movement problems to other parts of the body.|
|Neck Injury||Moderate to Severe||£7,410 - £36,120||Neck fractures, causing pain when moving, causing stiffness and inability to use the full movement of the persons neck.|
|Neck Injury||Mild||Up to £7,410||Whiplash type injuries, can depend on the length of time the injury lasts, how painful the injury is and what the long-term prognosis is.|
|Nose Injury||Severe||£9,990 - £21,700||Serious/multiple fractures to the nose that will have resulted in permanent damage and/or requiring a number of operations to repair.|
|Nose Injury||Less Severe||£3,710 - £4,790||Example displaced nose fractures where there has been complete recovery after surgery.|
|Nose Injury||Moderate||£2,370 - £2,960||Moderate nose injuries such as displaced nose fractures that do not need surgery.|
|Nose Injury||Minor||£1,600 - £2,370||Example being simple undisplaced fractures with full recovery.|
|PTSD||Severe||£56,180 - £94,470||The most severe cases of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder with permanent effects of trauma badly affecting the individual preventing them from being able to work or function anywhere close prior to the trauma might see compensation payouts within this range.|
|PTSD||Moderately Severe||£21,730 - £56,180||PTSD causing significant disability but the individual has a better future prognosis than the most severe cases might see compensation payouts within this range.|
|PTSD||Moderate||£7,680 - £21,730||PTSD where any lasting effects are not grossly disabling with the individual has largely recovered.|
|PTSD||Less Severe||£3,710 - £7,680||PTSD where the individual should essentially have made a full recovery in a year or two but minor symptoms could persist for longer.|
|Shoulder Injury||Severe||£11,980 - £45,070||Paralysis, limb numbness, restriction in movement because of the injury in the neck and shoulder.|
|Shoulder Injury||Moderate||£7,410 - £11,980||Neck tissue damage that might last for a considerable length of time and that restricts the movement in the persons arm and elbow.|
|Shoulder Injury||Mild||Up to £7,410||Damage to soft tissue that should recover within the year or slightly longer, and causes or has caused moderate pain.|
|Toe Injury||Extremely Severe||£34,270 - £52,620||Amputation of all toes. Depending on whether the amputation was traumatic or surgical can affect level of compensation.|
|Toe Injury||Very Severe||In the vicinity of £29,380||Amputation of a big toe.|
|Toe Injury||Severe||£12,900 - £19,770||Severe crush injuries that lead to amputation of a single or more toes, partial amputations.|
|Toe Injury||Serious||£9,010 - £12,900||Multiple fractures, crushed toes.|
|Toe Injury||Moderate||Up to £9,010||Straightforward toe fractures.|
|Toe Injury||Minor||Up to £5,250||Minor toe injuries such as simple fractures that are expected heal fully and short-term injuries.|
|Wrist Injury||Very Severe||£44,690 - £56,180||Wrist injury causing complete loss of function.|
|Wrist Injury||Significant||£22,990 - £36,770||Wrist injury leaving significant and permanent disability, there is still some useful movement.|
|Wrist Injury||Less Severe||£11,820 - £22,990||Broken wrist causing some permanent disability such as continuing pain/stiffness.|
|Wrist Injury||Moderate||Up to £9,620||Wrist fractures, soft tissue injury where recovery is complete or expected to be complete but may take longer than 12 months.|
|Wrist Injury||Minor||Up to £6,970||Uncomplicated Colles' fracture and minor wrist fractures.|
As injuries will differ in every claim, please use these settlement amounts as a guide only.
The time limit for a car accident claim is 3 years from the date of the accident, or 3 years from when an injury is diagnosed and can be proven to be as a result of the car accident. In some circumstances the 3-year time limit in which to make a car accident claim may be extended, however, you should get legal advice sooner rather than later to be sure you can still start a claim.
The claims time limit doesn’t apply to cases where children have been injured in a car crash. In this scenario, you, as a parent, could claim at any point before your child becomes 18-years old by becoming a litigation friend. If you don’t they could claim themselves within 3-years of their 18th birthday.
We suggest that it is often best to begin the claims process quickly. By doing so, your solicitor should have plenty of time to carry out the tasks required before a claim is submitted. We’ll explain the claims process more in the final section of this guide.
If you’ve ever had to deal with an insurance company, you’ll know that they will only pay out if there’s enough evidence to prove the claim is just. That’s certainly true in car accident claims and you could miss out on compensation if you’re unable to convince the insurer why their client was to blame for your injuries.
We believe that your chances of winning a car accident claim will improve with our personal injury solicitors working for you. If your case is accepted, your appointed solicitor will:
- Collate all of the evidence required to back up your car accident claim.
- Arrange for your injuries to be assessed independently.
- File the claim and deal with all queries or objections so you don’t have to answer them.
- Provide updates about the progress of the case regularly.
- Try to achieve as much compensation as possible for your injuries.
Any settlement offer will be discussed with you prior to accepting to make sure it is appropriate. If it isn’t, your car accident claims solicitor will provide evidence and reasoning as to why a higher payout is requested.
If you are ready to start your claim today and would like our help, please get in touch on 0800 6524 881. If you’d like to know anything else about car accident compensation claims, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
Last updated 22nd November 2021.