If you have been injured in a car or motor bike accident and you are thinking about making a claim for compensation for your injuries, it is important to know the dos and don’ts of the claims process.

Claiming compensation following an accident is not always a straightforward process. The first step of the process is to prove fault for the accident and that means that if you wish to bring a claim for compensation following an accident, the onus is upon you to prove that the other party or parties involved were negligent. There is also the issue of contributory negligence to be considered. The party at fault may raise an argument that you contributed to your own accident in an effort to reduce the level of compensation they are required to pay you.

Below is a list of some of the dos and don’ts to consider when it comes to claiming compensation for injuries arising because of a car accident claim.

DON’T go it alone

Insurance companies and specialist insurance investigators have extensive knowledge and resources available to them when defending compensation claims. It is in the insurer’s interests to pay out as little by way of compensation as possible. To ensure you get the best level of compensation, we strongly recommend you seek legal advice from our experienced personal injury solicitors before proceeding with your claim.

DO keep records

It is important to keep records of any documents relating to the car accident itself, the damage caused and your injuries and financial losses. Photographs of the accident location, damaged car and your injuries are always helpful but having details of your injuries recorded within your medical records, police report, etc is vital. It is also important to keep hold of receipts for medical expenses and travel expenses you have incurred whilst receiving treatment for your injuries. Keep a record of parking fees when attending hospital, GP or physiotherapy appointments as these expenses are as a direct consequence of your accident.

It is also important to keep a record of the registration number of the vehicle responsible for your accident together with the driver’s contact details. Don’t worry, if you don’t manage to get the driver’s contact details, we can carry out a search against the driver’s registration number and obtain registered keeper details. We also have access to the Motor Insurance Database which will confirm the vehicle’s insurance details.

Details such as the location of the vehicles on the road following the accident and weather conditions are also important and a note should be kept of these details also.

DON’T admit fault

Do not admit liability or sign anything which may suggest that you believe the accident to have been caused by you or your negligence. It is important that you speak to a solicitor and do not discuss liability with the other driver. It is fine to discuss and agree specific facts with the other driver, for example, that you were stationery, but any admittance of liability can affect how your claim will progress which means you may lose your right to bring a claim for compensation or you may be held partly to blame for the accident which will reduce any award of compensation made to you.

DO report the accident

You have a duty to report the accident to your insurance company as soon as is reasonably possible even if the accident was not your fault. You should also report the accident to the police if you have suffered injuries. It is good practice to always report an accident to the police as very often the police report will be relied upon in evidence when proving your claim. When the police attend the scene of the accident, they may well breathalyse both drivers, they often take photographs of the position of the vehicles and road markings following an accident and will gather details of any witnesses to the accident.

DON’T settle early

Insurance companies will often tempt you with an early settlement figure to keep their own outlay to a minimum. They will make a low offer to you for your injuries in the hope that you will accept it and end your claim.

As a firm we do not recommend acceptance of any offer made by an insurance company without first seeking the professional advice of a solicitor and professional opinion of a medical expert. A medical expert is best placed to consider the nature and extent of your injuries and offer a prognosis upon your future recovery.

It is very important to note that if you choose to accept an offer from the insurance company without seeking the professional opinion and prognosis of a medical expert, there is a risk that you do not recovery in full from your injuries in the future and, as such, you are unable to return to the insurance company seeking additional compensation once you have accepted an offer in settlement.

DO seek medical attention

It is important that the extent of your injuries is correctly documented within a medical report prepared by an accredited medical expert for the purposes of your claim. All medical reports are prepared for the benefit of the Court and must set out in detail the type of injuries you have suffered, details of ongoing problems and your future prognosis. Your medical evidence is a crucial part of your claim and will assist your solicitor and the Court in determining the overall value of your claim. It is also important that you attend your GP or hospital following your accident so that a record can be made of how you sustained your injuries and what treatment you received. Insurance companies are keen to know if you received treatment following your accident.


Unfortunately, whether as a passenger or a driver, it is possible that you may be involved in a car accident at some time in your life for which you may be entitled to recover compensation for any injuries you have suffered, damage to your vehicle, financial losses such as loss of earnings, medical expenses, travel expenses, policy excess, etc.

The rules around making a claim for compensation if you were involved in a car accident have changed and depending upon the type of car accident you were involved in ie driver, passenger, pedestrian, motor cyclist, victim of an uninsured or untraced driver, the rules vary, and it is therefore important that you speak to a solicitor so that the correct advice can be given before you consider making a claim.

If you or someone you know would like more information or need help or advice, please feel free to contact us on 0330 – 332 – 4844 or email: [email protected]