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How to Claim for Medical Negligence?

Making a successful medical negligence claim requires a thorough understanding of the legal process. When considering how to make a medical negligence claim, The first step is to consult an experienced solicitor specializing in medical negligence cases. They will assess the merits of your case and guide you through the complex legal proceedings. Your solicitor will gather medical records, expert opinions, and other relevant evidence to support your claim. It is essential to maintain open communication with your legal team and provide them with all the necessary information to build a strong case on your behalf.

Having sufficient evidentiary support explaining how the error was made; why it was sub-standard; and how the error has caused your child’s injury to worsen are all essential components when considering how to start a medical negligence claim. Once your legal team have advised you that these issues are satisfactory, your case is started at court by issuing a claim form and serving this on the Defendant with full details of your case.

Taking into account the Defendant’s counter-arguments and cross-referencing this with the factual and expert evidence each side relies are crucial steps when considering how to prove medical negligence cases such as this.

1. How long does a medical negligence claim take?

The duration of a medical negligence claim can vary depending on several factors, including the complexity of the case, the willingness of the defendant to settle, and the court’s availability. Typically, medical negligence claims take several months to several years to resolve.

The process involves thorough investigations, negotiations, and potentially court hearings and using our skill and expertise to balance proper case progression with case preparation are important factors in managing how long do medical negligence claims take. While it is important to seek timely justice, patience is crucial during the legal process, as it allows your legal team to build a compelling case to maximize your chances of a successful outcome.

2. What is the average payout for medical negligence?

Determining the average payout for medical negligence claims is challenging, as each case is unique, and compensation amounts are tailored to the specific circumstances and extent of the injuries.

In cases involving catastrophic brain injuries and cerebral palsy caused by a delay in diagnosing meningitis, the potential compensation can be substantial. It may cover medical expenses, ongoing care and rehabilitation costs, loss of earnings, pain and suffering, and other associated damages. What is the average payout for medical negligence (UK) in cases where a young child has suffered life-changing injuries which will affect them for the rest of their lives can reasonably amount to millions of pounds when daily care costs and adapting their living arrangements to allow them to lead as normal a life as is possible are supported by suitable evidence.

Your solicitor will work diligently to ensure you receive fair compensation for the physical, emotional, and financial consequences you have endured in order to maximise how much compensation for medical negligence of this type your child receives.

3. Limitation in medical negligence claims

While pursuing a medical negligence claim can provide a means of seeking justice and financial support, it is important to be aware of the limitations. These include the strict time limits for filing a claim, which is generally three years from the date of injury or from when the injury was reasonably discoverable.

In certain circumstances involving meningitis, whether can you claim for medical negligence after 3 years from the date of the negligent treatment depends on when the incident occurred and its severity. The limitation date for children does not start to run until they become adults on their 18th birthday. This means that they have until their 21st birthday. Accordingly, the answer to the question “can I claim medical negligence after 20 years?” would be ‘yes’ even if the injury caused by the meningitis was relatively modest. In cases where the infection has caused a very severe brain injury, it may be that your child will sadly never be able to manage their own affairs and so they can bring their case after their 21st birthdays.

In some cases, the effects of the earlier negligence may not become apparent until your child reaches their teens. If so, then if you are wondering can I claim medical negligence after; after 4 years; after 5 years; or after 10 years (UK), then your child may well be able to rely on their ability to bring a claim by their 21st birthday.

For adults, how long after medical negligence can you claim (UK) is more dependent on establishing when someone in your position would have suspected that they ought to investigate their potential claim. This is called ‘date of knowledge’. If this applies, then the case may be brought within 3 years of that date. If you are unable to manage your own affairs, then you may have an ‘open-ended’ date. Otherwise, you will need to persuade the court to exercise its discretion to allow your case to proceed outside of the usual 3-year limitation period.

Delay in taking legal action may jeopardize your chances of receiving compensation. Additionally, the burden of proof lies with you (as the claimant), meaning you must demonstrate that the healthcare professional’s actions fell below the acceptable standard of care and directly caused your injury.


Seeking compensation for a medical negligence case involving a delay in diagnosing meningitis and resulting in catastrophic brain injury is a complex and challenging endeavour.

However, with the assistance of a knowledgeable solicitor specializing in medical negligence claims, you can navigate the legal process with confidence.

Remember to act promptly, gather the necessary evidence, and seek expert advice to build a strong case. While the duration of the claim may vary, patience and perseverance are key. By pursuing justice, you can potentially receive the compensation you deserve.

Our medical negligence experts have over forty-five years of experience helping vulnerable patients and their families who were affected by clinical negligence. For a free initial consultation, please call our experts on 0330 822 3451 or request a call back.

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