Road Traffic Accident Claims – A Comprehensive Guide
Road Traffic Accident Claims – Road traffic accidents are always unfortunate. They can happen any time, anywhere, and they can happen for a number of reasons. When RTAs happen, people can make claims. A claim leads to financial compensation that a person receives when there is evidence of negligence from the other party involved in the accident. RTA claims are considered credible when the person making the claim has no provable fault in the accident itself. If you have been in a road traffic accident, then you are eligible to make an RTA claim. Let’s go a bit in-depth into the process:
How Does A Road Traffic Accident Claim Work?
In the UK, every vehicle owner is required to carry car insurance. And so, when a road traffic accident occurs, let’s say you make a claim. Then that claim will be sent to the insurance company of the other person involved. This case is sent to the insurance claims adjuster that analyses the case and makes sure that the claim is eligible to move forward.
This is always tricky to deal with, as insurance claims adjusters will always work against you. They will at first try to deny your claim and if that does not work, then they will try to minimise the claim as much as possible so that you get the least compensation that you can. Hamilton Douglas Legal helps you by backing you in your claim so that you can get the compensation that you rightfully deserve.
Road Traffic Accident Claims, can you make a claim?
The first thing before looking to make a claim is checking if you are eligible for it in the first place. The first and most important factor to determine is if you were at fault for the accident. If you weren’t at fault, then you can move ahead and consider other factors. These include proving that you were vigilant during the accident and that someone else is to blame for the accident suffered. This can lead to you proving that you deserve the compensation.
Speaking of Proof
Road Traffic Accident Claims are always fickle and unpredictable. If severe enough, they can change the entire course of your life due to injuries, disabilities and such. This is why you have to make sure that if you were not at fault for the accident, then you are rightfully compensated for the physical, and even mental trauma, such as PTSD, that you suffered. But whether it’s a compensation claim for a motorcycle accident, a car accident, or even a public transport accident such as a bus, getting that compensation isn’t easy. The burden of proof lies on you. And there are certain things that you need to provide as concrete proof that will help you firm your claim.
Let’s take a look
Immediately after the accident, the first thing you should do is call the medical and law enforcement authorities. The preservation of life at the scene of the accident is the most important thing. Once the medical part is over, the police will take over and handle everything, such as documenting the crash, the time, date, severity, etc. And with all the information they collect at the scene, they will write up a police report.
It is essential for you to get a copy of this police report. But if, for some reason such as injury or unconsciousness, you can’t get the report at the scene, then don’t worry, you can get it later directly from them.
Details Of The Other Person
Though this information will be in the police report, it is recommended that you get all the relevant information about the other person(s) involved in the accident to help you out later in your claim. From the name and address to the insurance information. All this information will come in handy at some point in the case. What to do after a car accident in Scotland is explained here.
The most basic kind of proof that you can have is a witness statement. So, if your crash happened in a populated place, then it is best to get a statement from two or three people that were at the scene of the crash. These can help prove the severity of the crash, and sometimes even help prove the negligence of the other driver. Getting their contact information and their statements can prove vital.
Photos and Videos
This is the modern era. Everyone has phones in their hands, even toddlers. Getting visual proof has become quite easy. Just take your phone out and start clicking away photos or recording a video. Cover all angles of the vehicle. Photograph your injuries. Everything you think is relevant should be photographed. Even if your personal property inside the car was damaged, take a picture of it. It might be relevant in getting you compensation for the damages that you suffered. And if you have a dashcam installed, even better. Take the video from the dashcam and secure it as evidence.
And why stop there? The streets are bound to have CCTV cameras installed. If they are public CCTV cameras, the police will most likely get the footage. Ask for it, so that you can include it as evidence in your claim. And if you see a CCTV camera on someone’s private property, ask them for the footage too. Your claim needs to be as strong as possible and that means covering all bases.
It is your legal right to ask for this footage, as it can be essential in proving the negligence of the other driver.
If you’ve been in an accident, then chances are you have been to A&E. Any injuries that you had would’ve been treated here. This means that there would’ve been a medical report produced. This report will outline all the injuries that you suffered due to the crash and their severity. This is an essential piece of evidence to acquire, as it will help prove how badly you were affected by the accident. So will the receipts, as all the medicine and all the treatment costs will help in deciding the amount of compensation that you deserve.
How Much Compensation Can You Get?
Submitting a claim is all about the amount of compensation you get, right? But what factors decide how much you get? All victims are curious about this. But the fact is, there is no one answer, as the circumstances of the crash and the severity of the injuries and damages decide what kind of compensation you get. Evidence also plays a huge part in that because it can show the level of negligence that the other driver had, influencing the final amount.
Another important factor that can affect the kind of compensation you get is whether you hire a claim’s solicitor. There are times when insurance companies can try to settle for less than the amount you deserve. This can be due to the inexperience of the victim in dealing with claims. To prevent this, it is recommended to hire a solicitor that can ascertain the proper amount of compensation that you deserve.
If you have been in an accident, then you should report your accident to the insurance company as quickly as possible. They might require you to report in under 24 hours, due to policy. That is why clearing the situation up with them as soon as possible is recommended. Waiting can weaken your claim, and there are many companies that have a time limit on reporting your accidents.
How long after an accident can I make a claim in Scotland?
And when it comes to making a claim, there is a general statute of 3 years. Though it is also recommended that a claim be made as soon as possible too. But the 3-year limit is there to help people strengthen their case or allow them to claim it later if there were other circumstances that didn’t allow them to claim earlier.
Can I Make A Claim As A Passenger?
Yes. You don’t need to be a driver in the accident to be able to make a claim. Even if you are a passenger, you can make a claim. Whether you are travelling in a car or even if you are travelling on public transport, you can claim compensation as it is your right. If you are a passenger, then the fault is fully not yours, which is a good factor. Should the need arise, you can even claim against your own driver for compensation, as it could’ve been their negligence that might’ve led to the accident.
That is why it is advised to hire a solicitor for bus accident injury claims or other kinds of public transport, so they can help you figure out how you should be approaching your claim, being a passenger.
Do You Need To Give Your Details To The Other Party?
Yes, actually. The law under the Road Traffic Act of 1988, Section 170 states as much. The driver involved is required by law to stay at the place of the accident. And the exchange of information is essential. You should provide the other party with your name, address, vehicle registration and other relevant information.
Limitations to Make a Claim
The Limitation Act of 1980 states that you have a limitation of three years to make an injury claim.
This claim can be made from either
- The date on which the accident occurred.
- The date of knowledge (if later, due to other circumstances) of the person injured.
This limitation applies to road traffic accident claims too. The date of knowledge can refer to the date you acknowledged your injuries. This date can, at times, vary due to injuries that one might suffer from the accident.
Also, if one is a minor at the time of the accident, the 3-year deadline begins when the person turns 18 years of age, which expires when they turn 21.
How long after a car accident can you make a claim?
As the law states, you can make a road traffic accident claim 3 years after the accident has occurred. And that is considered final. But there are certain situations or mitigating circumstances that can allow you to submit a claim after the three-year deadline has passed. This power is reserved by the court, as stated in the Limitation Act of 1980.
These circumstances can be hard to understand. That is why we recommend hiring a solicitor for a car accident claim in Glasgow. Hamilton Douglas Legal will help you understand the full terms of the limit and can help you get that limit extended too. So, even if the 3-year deadline has passed, don’t hesitate to contact us. Because we might be able to turn the circumstances in your favour.
How Long Do Road Traffic Accident Claims Take?
This is one of the first questions that someone asks after submitting a claim. How long does it take? Well, there is no specific answer. The circumstances of every case dictate the time it takes to come to a conclusion. Even estimates are quite broad. With some cases coming to a conclusion only after a couple of months, while others can take 9-10 months or even a year.
You can help speed things along by hiring a lawyer for car accident compensation in Scotland. They can streamline the case and clear things up so that everything gets resolved as quickly as possible and you get the compensation you deserve quickly too.
No Win No Fee Solicitors
So, have you been in an road traffic accident? Hire a solicitor from Hamilton Douglas Legal and claim your compensation for road accidents in Scotland. We are here to guide you and simplify the process for you. A road traffic accident is a stressful event, and dealing with a compensation claim can be even more stressful, which is why we are here to take the burden off of your shoulders. Contact us today or fill our enquiry form, and we will help you start out your claim.
Road traffic accident claims can get complicated but only if you make them complicated. There are simple steps, outlined in this comprehensive guide, that you can follow to make sure that your case remains simplistic but concrete. So that when you finally put forward a compensation claim, it will help you get the best compensation amount and quickly at that.