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What are the time limits for making a claim after a fatal accident?

You have 3 years from the date of the accident to bring a claim for a fatal accident. If the injured person dies within 3 years of the accident (due to their accident-related injuries), the limitation clock starts again for his or her family members and they have 3 years from the date of death to bring a claim. If the injured person dies more than 3 years after their accident and has not commenced court proceedings in respect of their claim, their family members are unfortunately out of time to bring a claim. 

There are variations to these time limits in specific circumstances. For example, if the death occurred on a ship or aeroplane, the time limit would be 2 years from the date of the accident. The time limit for applying for compensation from the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority in respect of a fatality is also 2 years. Further, if the injury caused the injured person to lose mental capacity to conduct the claim, the limitation period may not have commenced and it may still be possible to bring a claim after their death.

Is no win no fee funding available for fatal accidents and how does it work?

It possible to fund a fatal accident claim on a no win no fee basis, which means that if the case is unsuccessful, you will not be required to pay any legal costs. This ensures that the deceased’s loved ones do not have to be concerned about paying out their own money to pursue the claim and also do not have to worry about losing money from the deceased’s estate.

If the case is successful, there will usually be a deduction from the compensation recovered in order to pay our success fee. This success fee is payable as a reflection of the risk that we have taken in pursuing a case on a no win no fee basis, given that we do not recover our costs if the case is unsuccessful.

What is a statutory bereavement award?

A statutory bereavement award is a sum of money that you are able to claim if you are the wife, husband or civil partner of the deceased or the deceased is your legitimate child and is under 18. It is a fixed sum of £12,980 and is intended to compensate close family members for the loss of their loved one. We strongly believe that the government ought to increase the amount of this award as well as extending the number of relatives who can claim it, as it is presently very restricted and is clearly an insufficient sum to compensate for the loss of a life.

Why choose Stephensons?

Our sensitive and understanding fatal injury solicitors have years of experience in providing legal services to bereaved parties who have lost relatives due to fatal accidents. Since these proceedings are so important to those involved, Stephensons offers specialist legal advice from knowledgeable and compassionate legal professionals. 

Stephensons has represented a wide variety of clients from all over the UK. In addition to the compensation won, the legal action taken has lead to the introduction of improved safety measures within the workplace and beyond in order to ensure that similar accidents to not happen again.

Some cases are more complex than others, including cases of fatal diseases contracted at work, but as one of the largest firms in the UK, we offer expert guidance in every area of the field. 

Our legal advisors can provide advice on a fatal injury claim and ensure that your future is secure in the wake of bereavement. Call 0203 816 0065 for more information.

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