Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

Read through our frequently asked questions to get the answers you need before making a compensation claim.

Your questions about claiming answered

We understand how stressful life can be after an accident and we know that the process of claiming compensation can seem daunting. But, if you choose to start your claim with us, we promise that we’ll work hard to keep things as straightforward as possible.

We aim to make sure you know what to expect before starting your claim. With this in mind, we’ve answered some frequently asked questions.

What is a personal injury?

What is a personal injury?

A personal injury is a physical or psychological injury, illness or disease that has been caused by somebody else. Personal injuries are usually the result of accidents that were avoidable and shouldn’t have happened at all.

A personal injury claim is the process of recovering compensation for an accident or negligent act that caused you or a loved one an injury.

Read more about our work with personal injury claims.

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How do I know if I have a claim?

How do I know if I have a claim?

Typically, if you’ve suffered an injury in the last three years because of an accident or medical mistake that wasn’t your fault, then it’s likely you have a compensation claim.

There are some cases where these criteria might be different. For example, if you’re claiming on behalf of a child, you have three years from their 18th birthday to make a claim, regardless of how old they were when they were injured.

You can find out if you have a claim today by giving us a call on 0800 376 0150 or by using our eligibility checker.

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We need some more details

Based on your current answers, we’re not sure we can help. But we’d like to be sure. Enter your details in the form below and we’ll call you to discuss your accident. Our call will be free and advisory.

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We need some more details

Based on your current answers, we’re not sure we can help. But we’d like to be sure. Enter your details in the form below and we’ll call you to discuss your accident. Our call will be free and advisory.

Enter your details below to see how we can help

It looks like you could make a claim

Based on your answers, we think it may be possible for you to make a no win no fee claim with one of our specialist solicitors.

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Can I claim for somebody else?

Can I claim for somebody else?

Quite simply, yes. If you’re thinking of making a claim on behalf of a friend or loved one, then it’s likely we can help you.

To find out more information please visit our claiming on behalf of someone else page.

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How do I start my claim?

How do I start my claim?

Starting your claim with us is simple. When you contact us we’ll ask you some details about your accident, injury and recovery. This is so that we can fully understand the cause, what happened and the impact your injury has had on your life.

We’ll then be able to let you know whether we think you have claim. If you are eligible and you decide you’d like to go ahead, we’ll select a specialist solicitor from our panel to suit your particular case. You’ll then be transferred to them, usually on the same call.

Your solicitor will be able to answer any further questions and can help you to start your claim. They’ll be able to give you more information about our no win no fee agreement.

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Can I claim for other damages, such as unfair dismissal, car damage or mobile phone damage?

Can I claim for other damages, such as unfair dismissal, car damage or mobile phone damage?

We’re only able to help you claim for your physical injury and the impact this has had on your life. If you’ve been unfairly dismissed from work because of your injury, your solicitor will also take this into consideration when making your claim.

To find out how much your claim might be worth and to get an insight into what is taken into account when calculating your compensation, you can try our industry-leading compensation calculator.

Should I do anything to help my case?

Should I do anything to help my case?

Your solicitor does the majority of the work throughout your claim, including contacting the responsible party and negotiating on your behalf. This leaves you with the time to focus on your recovery.

However, there are a couple of things you can do to help with your case. Your solicitor may need evidence of your accident, such as photographs or witness names. We realise that it can be difficult to gather this information, but having it before you start your claim could help to make the process simpler.

They will also invite you to take part in a free medical assessment. This is nothing to worry about and usually only takes around 20 minutes. The findings from your assessment will be used to support your compensation claim and can also help you to understand how your recovery is going.

Read more about our free medical assessments.

Do I need legal aid?

Legal aid was a method of covering the cost of going to court and getting a fair hearing. In 2000, legal aid was made unavailable for personal injury cases, and instead no win no fee or conditional fee agreements were introduced.

All of our solicitors can help you to make your claim on a no win no fee basis, which means that if your case isn’t successful you won’t pay a penny.

If your case is successful, you’ll pay a fee to your solicitor as a percentage of the amount you receive, and this percentage will have been agreed before starting your claim.

Find out more about legal aid and no win no fee here.

How long will my claim take?

How long will my claim take?

Every case we work with is different, which makes it hard for us to say how long your compensation claim might take.

In simpler cases, where fault is clear and undeniable the claim may be settled quickly. However, if you’ve suffered a serious or life-changing injury, then your compensation claim may take longer because we need to understand the full impact of your injury and make sure your costs are covered.

Our solicitors will stay in touch and keep you informed every step of the way, so that you always know what stage your claim is at.

Will I have to go to court?

Will I have to go to court?

Around 95% of our cases are settled without the need to go to court. This means there is a very small chance a claim will require a court hearing.

If your case does go to court, your solicitor will be on hand to support and guide you through the process and will make sure you always know what to expect.

Many people are put off making a personal injury claim because they are worried about having to go to court. Thankfully, the majority of cases we work with never reach the courtroom and are settled before.  

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What will it cost me to claim?

What will it cost me to claim?

There are no upfront costs or unexpected fees when you start your claim with us. Our advice is free and your solicitor will work on a no win no fee basis, meaning that you won’t pay a penny for your claim unless it is successful.

If your claim is successfully settled, you’ll pay some legal costs to your solicitor from your compensation. These will be agreed between you and your solicitor before you start your claim, so there will be no surprises.

Read more about no win no fee. 

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How much compensation will I receive?

How much compensation will I receive?

Your compensation figure is negotiated between your solicitor and the party responsible for your accident. This means we’re not able to let you know how much your final settlement figure might be when you contact us because the negotiations will not have started yet.

However, we know how important it is for you to have an idea of how much compensation you may be able to claim. Because of this, we’ve created our industry-leading compensation calculator. To get a guideline figure of how much your claim might be worth you can try our compensation calculator. 

Find out how much your claim might be worth

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Who pays my compensation?

Who pays my compensation?

The person or company responsible for paying your compensation depends on the type of claim you’re making. Typically, no one person is responsible for paying any compensation and instead the claim is made against their insurance.

So in the case of a road traffic accident it would be the driver’s insurance that covers the cost of your compensation, or if you’re making an accident at work claim your employer’s liability insurance would pay.

If you’d like more information, please click on your accident type below

What if I don't win my case?

What if I don't win my case?

All of our solicitors work on a no win no fee basis, which means they agree that if your case is unsuccessful then you won’t be charged a penny.

Quite simply, it’s no win, no fee, no risk, which means you can make a compensation claim without the worry of being left with a bill you can’t afford.

What if I don't win my case?

What if I don’t win my case?

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How does National Accident Helpline get paid?

We are paid by the specialist personal injury solicitors who we work with because we promote their work through the service we offer.

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What fee does National Accident Helpline take?

What fee does National Accident Helpline take?

Our service is free and advisory – it costs you nothing. We take no payment for connecting you with the right personal injury solicitor for your case.

Our solicitor firms will charge a fee if your claim is successful. This will be paid as a percentage from the amount of compensation you receive, and will have been agreed beforehand.

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Are your solicitors part of National Accident Helpline or a third party?

Are your solicitors part of National Accident Helpline or a third party?

The solicitors we work with are third party partner solicitor firms. We work closely with them to make sure they’re working with the right cases and upholding a good level of service in-line with our customer charter.

How we choose our solicitors to handle your claims

We choose our firms based on specialisms and we quality check them on a regular basis.

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Will I have to go to a solicitor's office?

Will I have to go to a solicitor's office?
There's no need to visit a solicitor's office in person. If you decide you’d like to go ahead, we pass you onto one of our specialist solicitors for a free initial consultation. We usually transfer you to them on the same call and they’ll typically handle your case without you needing to visit them.

Will I have to go to a solicitor's office?

There’s no need to visit a solicitor’s office in person.

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What can compensation be used for?

What can compensation be used for?
The most common uses for compensation are to replace lost earnings, to cover the cost of rehabilitation and medication and to pay off debts and bills that might have built up during time off work.

Can I claim against my GP?

Can I claim against my GP?
Yes, your GP has a duty of care to you. If they’ve failed to uphold this and you have been affected as a result, we can help you make it right. Read more about claiming for GP negligence here.

Can I still claim if my accident happened abroad?

Can I still claim if my accident happened abroad?
Yes, we’re able to help with holiday accident claims . Your hotel, the hotel staff and every company you encounter on your travels all have a duty of care to provide you with a safe service.

Will my solicitor be near me?

Will my solicitor be near me?
We work with solicitors that specialise in many different areas of personal injury claims, so our aim is to find the best solicitor suited to your specific case. This means that you could get a solicitor near you, but it is not guaranteed.

What happens if I don't have a witness?

What happens if I don't have a witness?
You could still claim even if you don’t have a witness to call upon. Our partner solicitors gather information from several different sources to file a genuine claim for compensation for your accident.

What happens if I don't have CCTV footage of my accident?

What happens if I don't have CCTV footage of my accident?
If there were no cameras in operation during the time of your accident, our partner solicitors will still look into your case based on a number of other records, such as vehicle damage, injury or injuries sustained and eyewitness accounts.

What happens if I didn't call the police after my accident?

What happens if I didn't call the police after my accident?
You can still get in touch with us to see if you are eligible to make a claim. Public accidents, such as a slip in a supermarket or a trip on a pavement slab, would not require the police to be informed, so it’s possible you could still make a claim.

What happens if I didn't go to the hospital after my accident?

What happens if I didn't go to the hospital after my accident?
You can still get in touch with us to see if you are eligible to make a claim. Many people don't seek medical help or advice straight away, but it can be an important aspect of your case – you can speak to us about this on the phone with one of our Legal Support Advisers.

What if I didn't fill in an accident form after my injury?

What if I didn't fill in an accident form after my injury?
Accidents like slips and falls don't always require an accident form to be filled out, so you could still be eligible to make a claim. Speak to a Legal Support Advisor today to discuss the details of your case to find out more.

Can I claim if I'm self-employed?

Can I claim if I'm self-employed?
Yes. If a workplace in which you are expected to work for any length of time is unsafe or if you weren’t given the proper training before starting the job and you suffer a personal injury as a result, you may have a case for compensation. Find out more about your rights for claiming as a self-employed worker here.

Can I claim if I'm unemployed?

Can I claim if I'm unemployed?
Yes. Whether you have been injured in a public place or a private setting like home, you do not need to be in employment to be able to make a claim. Find out more about your rights for claiming if you are unemployed here.

I’ve made a claim before – can I claim for a new accident?

I’ve made a claim before – can I claim for a new accident?
If you've suffered an accident that wasn't your fault, you can get in touch with us to see if you have a case regardless of whether you have claimed with us in the past or not. Your Legal Support Advisor will assess your situation honestly and objectively.

What should I do after a car accident?

What should I do after a car accident?

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Stop the car as soon as possible Be sure to put your hazard lights on if possible

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Make sure you and your passengers are OK Call 999 if anyone is seriously injured

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Try to remain calm It’s normal to be shocked after an accident

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Exchange details with anyone involved; Names, Contact numbers, Insurance details

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Take note of the scene of the accident Date, Time, Weather, Damage

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Call our Legal Support Advisors to see if we can help You may be entitled to compensation if it wasn’t your fault

Who owns National Accident Helpline?

Who owns National Accident Helpline?
We operate under our parent company, NAHL Group plc, which encompasses three divisions of professional legal services. You can find out more about National Accident Helpline and the Group here
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