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We can help with your NHS medical negligence claim

We're the UK's leading provider of personal injury advice, services and support, with over years_since years' experience in helping people get the compensation they need. We've handled thousands of NHS negligence claims and recovered thousands of pounds in compensation for victims of NHS medical negligence. So, if you've had inadequate care and it feels wrong, we can help make it right.

We explain how National Accident Helpline works

How does National Accident Helpline work?

We explain how National Accident Helpline works

No matter your situation or the circumstances around your NHS complaint, our experts are here to help. We have a legally trained team and a network of specialist personal injury solicitors across the UK that will talk things through with you at your own pace.

Contact our team today on or fill out our secure online form and we'll call you back at a time that suits you to discuss your NHS claim.

It's always really important to hear what the person's been through. To hear their narrative, from them, in their way - and having the time and space to be able to do that is essential.

Dr Claire Freeman

Clinical Psychologist

What is clinical negligence from the NHS?

NHS negligence happens when your rights are not upheld. This means the people treating you have failed to fulfil their duty of care to you and have not followed regulations such as the NHS Constitution.

Medical negligence from the NHS usually involves wrong and/or substandard care, treatment or diagnosis. This is often due to medical staff doing something wrong or failing to act. For example, they may not have taken the correct steps to keep you safe or prevent further pain or harm. Unfortunately, this means that NHS gross negligence can cause illness, severe injury and make existing conditions worse.

Some examples of NHS negligence are:

In the year from April 1, 2020, there were 14,485 cases of medical negligence registered to the Compensation Recovery Unit, a government organisation overseen by the Department for Work and Pensions

NHS medical negligence can not only affect you physically but mentally too. According to our research, 72% of 1,000 people who had suffered a 'no fault' injury admitted to suffering a mental health issue as a direct result. The top three symptoms they experienced after their accidents were stress, anxiety and sleep deprivation.

We spoke to Clinical Psychologist Dr Claire Freeman to better understand the impact accidental injuries can have on people's mental health.

When we see people directly after an accident, often there's a physical injury - and where there's injury there's usually pain. Pain is highly associated with low mood and depression that can show itself quite differently between different people. They don't need to suffer this extra burden in silence - advice and help are available.

Dr Claire Freeman

Clinical Psychologist

Watch her interview below to find out more:

Dr Claire Freeman discusses how #mentalhealth can be affected by injuries | #MakeItRight

Dr Claire Freeman discusses how #mentalhealth can be affected by injuries | #MakeItRight

Dr Claire Freeman discusses how #mentalhealth can be affected by injuries | #MakeItRight

What do you need to prove during an NHS claim?

NHS medical negligence claims are different to personal injury claims, as you (the claimant) must prove the following two things:

  • Fault - that the medical professional(s) failed to adequately fulfil their duty to you as a patient
  • Avoidable harm - that this failure caused you harm that was avoidable. For instance, it caused you injury, illness or made your condition worse

If you've suffered and think you could claim against the NHS for negligence based on the above, we're here to guide you every step of the way. Our team has a huge amount of experience and expertise and can offer you specialist advice throughout the process of making an NHS complaint.

We understand you may feel worried or nervous about making an NHS compensation claim. It's important to remember that it may not only offer you the compensation you need but also highlight specific safety issues. This will ensure changes are made that could prevent the same accident or injury from happening to other patients.

Talk through your concerns with our legally trained advisors. We're available during normal trading hours on or you can fill out our secure online form to request a call back. We'll listen to what's happened to you, and advise on whether you could claim NHS compensation.  

Who can make an NHS claim?

Every person treated by the NHS has rights. That's true whether you're receiving treatment from your GP, a hospital or a therapy service, such as a physiotherapist or counsellor. You can read more about NHS patient rights on sites such as Citizens Advice.

If you've suffered any form of negligence from a hospital, GP or NHS professional in the past three years, you could be able to make a compensation claim against the NHS. If it's caused you pain or delayed your recovery, we could help you make it right.

The simplest way to find out whether you could make an NHS negligence claim is to arrange a call back or contact us on .

Is there an NHS medical negligence claim time limit?

In most cases, you must start a compensation claim against the NHS within three years of discovering you obtained negligent treatment. However, there are some circumstances where this doesn't apply. For example:

  • Under the Mental Capacity Act 2005, if the claimant is unable to submit an NHS complaint personally due to brain damage/injury or other mental incapacities, there is no time limit on making a claim.
  • NHS complaints involving children can be made at any time before their 18th birthday. Parents, guardians or formal ‘litigation friends' can make an NHS claim on their behalf. Once the child turns 18, they would need to claim compensation from the NHS themselves before their 21st birthday.

There may be exceptions to the NHS negligence claims time limit in certain circumstances. By talking with our legally trained advisors on , we can advise on whether you could still claim or not.

How do I know if I can make a successful claim against the NHS?

The first way we can help you is by providing you with free, impartial advice about your NHS claim. As a helpline, we're not here to pressure or rush people into making a claim against the NHS - we're here to help. Anyone who calls us on can access free advice about claiming for NHS medical negligence.

We'll listen to your experience and let you know if we think you have a valid NHS complaint. If you do have an NHS clinical negligence claim and decide you'd like to go ahead, we can put you forward to a specialist NHS negligence solicitor. They can help you with your case and guide you through the next steps.

However, if you're not quite ready to speak to us, you might have a successful NHS claim if your injury:

  • Happened in the past three years
  • Was somebody else's fault
  • Caused you further harm, complications or pain

What happens when I call to discuss my NHS claim?

When you call us, one of our specially trained advisors will ask you about your situation. This is so they can understand whether we can help.

We'll let you know if we think you have a valid NHS negligence case and ask if we can transfer you to one of our partner solicitor firms that specialise in medical negligence claims.

From there, your solicitor will look after you, including helping you fill in any paperwork, arranging medical examinations and answering any questions you may have.

They understand how stressful dealing with the impact of NHS medical negligence can be, and they'll be there to help you every step of the way.

Cases of NHS negligence are thankfully rare, but we're here for you if you've suffered from substandard care and need help making it right.

You can contact us on  or arrange a call back.

Frequently asked questions...

Yes - it’s highly likely you’ll need to go to one. An independent medical opinion is an important part of the evidence that your solicitor will rely on when building your claim. Your solicitor will advise you based on the specifics of your claim.

The appointment will be booked for you and in most cases, will be with a medical professional local to you. It doesn’t take long, usually no more than 30 minutes to an hour. After the appointment, the medical professional will write a report giving their opinion and then send it to your solicitor. You’ll be able to read the report and your solicitor will ask you to check it for accuracy.

Proving liability in a claim is about establishing blame in four key areas. 

Duty: did the party you hold responsible for your injury owe you a legal duty of care?  

Breach: did they breach that duty by acting (or failing to act) in a particular way?  

Causation: did their actions (or absence of them) cause your injuries? 

Damages: were you injured by their actions or inactions? 

Let’s look at the health service. NHS Resolution is the body that oversees medical negligence claims against the NHS. Their figures show that there were 15,655 claims settled in 2018/19 and that damages were awarded on 8,712 occasions – that’s in almost 56% of cases.

Medicine is complex and so are claims made for negligence: if you think you’ve been affected, then come and talk to us. You’ll be able to chat through your circumstances with one of our expert legal support advisors - and we’ll give you the options you need to make an informed decision about what to do next.

Can I make a no win no fee NHS negligence claim?

Yes, most of our NHS negligence cases operate on a no win no fee basis. This takes the risk out of making an NHS claim, as you don't have to pay fees upfront and there are no hidden charges. If you lose your case, our no win no fee NHS negligence arrangement means you won't need to pay your solicitor any money.

If you're successful in claiming NHS compensation, your legal fees will be deducted from the amount recovered.

At the start of the claim, your NHS malpractice lawyer may need to take out a special legal protection policy for you called ‘After the Event' insurance (ATE). It pays the costs if your claim fails and ensures claiming is risk-free. Insurance must always be in place just in case that happens. Your NHS negligence solicitor will discuss and agree on fees with you before they start work on your case so there are no unexpected or hidden costs.

We offer free, impartial advice when you call us, and you are not obligated to make a claim. We're simply here to help you make the right decision for you.

What is "No win no fee"?

We offer free, impartial advice when you call us, and you are not obligated to make a claim. We're simply here to help you make the right decision for you.

Do successful medical negligence claims take money out of the NHS budget?

No, if your clinical negligence claim against the NHS is successful, money will not be taken out of the NHS budget. There's no need to worry that your claim will affect anyone else's healthcare.

This is because NHS claims are dealt with by NHS Resolution, an organisation set up by the government. They act as the NHS' specialist insurer, dealing with all patient claims against NHS Trusts. 

Each NHS Trust in the UK pays an annual premium to NHS Resolution. This ensures there is money available to resolve any NHS medical negligence claims and that payouts do not impact care.

According to NHS Resolution's annual report, there were 12,629 NHS clinical negligence claims in 2020/21. This was across a variety of areas, including emergency medicine, orthopaedic surgery, gastroenterology and radiology to name a few.

I want to claim against the NHS - can I also issue a complaint directly to the Trust at fault?

Aside from receiving NHS negligence compensation for your injury, we realise you may also be looking for a formal apology after suffering due to negligent treatment.

All NHS healthcare providers have a structure for receiving patient feedback, both positive and negative. So, if you have feedback, you shouldn't worry about asking a member of staff about their complaints or feedback procedure.

You may feel embarrassed about making an NHS complaint against a doctor or a member of medical staff, but there's no need to worry - it's very unlikely you'll have to complain directly to the member of staff who caused your injury. It's also important to remember that making a complaint can highlight safety issues so that improvements can be made.

NHS complaints can be made verbally, in writing or by both means. You should get a full response from the hospital or medical practice within a few weeks.

If you would like some advice on making an NHS claim, you can get in touch with patients' rights organisations like Action against Medical Accidents (AvMA).

We've been helping people pursue medical negligence claims against the NHS for almost 30 years and could help you get the compensation you need.

Our handling of personal injury claims across the UK has earned us an ‘Excellent' rating on customer review platform Trustpilot

We don't think people who experience medical negligence at the hands of the NHS should have to face financial hardship. Contact us today on or fill in our secure online form to find out more about how we could help you. 

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Compassionate and stress-free claims handling.
Compensation on a No Win No Fee basis means you'll never be out of pocket.
We've handled over 40,000 medical claims.
Trusted, friendly and confidential support when you really need it.

Katie's Story

When Katie's appendix burst and it went unnoticed, her mum Julie feared long-term consequences. That's why she contacted us to help make it right.

Katie suffered with appendicitis which went undiagnosed for 17 days.

Katie's medical negligence story - National Accident Helpline (short version)

Katie suffered with appendicitis which went undiagnosed for 17 days.

Our solicitors, who were recommended by National Accident Helpline, were absolutely fantastic. They supported us all the way down the line.

Julie, Katie's mum

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