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'Personal Law' Category Archives

November 13th, 2019

The facts about under-settled personal injury claims

Personal injury law book on a table

Often, lawyers will settle cases before they go to court, but not always for the correct amount. If you feel like your claim has been under-settled, there are things that you can do to challenge the amount of compensation you received.

The main role of a personal injury lawyer is to value and negotiate a settlement. Some cases, however, are prematurely settled. This may be to avoid the expenses of going to court or to avoid a lengthy negotiation process.

When you’re hurt in an accident, you can make a personal injury claim against the person who is at fault. This may have been through someone else’s negligence or rash behaviour. How much to claim depends on a few factors and your legal representative would generally value and negotiate the claim based on:

  • The evidence
  • Your financial losses as a result of the accident
  • The seriousness of the injury
  • Loss of amenity
  • Any future care
  • The psychological aspects of your injury

What are under-settled cases?

The term ‘settling’ refers to the stage in the claim process where the involved parties have come to an agreement on the amount of compensation due. Once it is settled, the compensation is paid to the claimant (person making the claim). However, this compensation may not have been the correct amount due. The claim may have been settled for less than its true value.

If you are in the process of settling – or have settled a personal injury claim and feel like you haven’t been compensated fairly, then the case may have been under-settled. An under-settled case is when your claims handler accepts a lower settlement due to inexperience or wanting to resolve your case quickly.

You may have also been put under pressure to accept the claim. If this sounds like you, then it’s time to take a step back and allow the specialist personal injury solicitors at Foys to handle it. We can explain the ins and outs of under-settled cases, and what you can do to challenge them, if you suspect that your case has been handled in this way.

Reasons why under-settled personal injury claims happen

Under-settled personal injury claims happen due to negligence by your lawyer. Some examples of how a lawyer may be negligent with a personal injury claim are:

  • Inexperience – In an effort to cut costs and maintain high profits, many firms have taken to using unqualified juniors or claims handlers to manage cases. These lawyers lack the necessary skill or expertise to handle cases properly, so they may miss crucial evidence, fail to consider all of the possible damages, and even accept the first offer made without trying to negotiate for a higher sum. Often junior case handlers will be pressured to run cases quickly, in an effort to minimise costs.
  • Failure to obtain medical evidence – Sometimes, in more extreme cases, claims will be settled prior to obtaining a proper medical report. This is a dangerous cost-cutting method, as it prevents lawyers from evaluating a case reliably. This can result in claims being settled for far lower than they should be.
  • Not taking all the necessary information into account – sometimes a lawyer may improperly value your claim. They may fail to take into account care costs, future care and rehabilitation, missed pension contribution and financial losses.

Fighting back against under-settled

As is the case with most things, prevention is better than a cure. There are several warning signs that can indicate when a lawyer is likely to under-settle your case, and by looking out for these signs, you can protect yourself and ensure you get the money you deserve. Here are some things you can do to avoid being under-settled:

  • Ask about qualifications – Many inexperienced claims handlers may not have the correct qualifications.  Your professional lawyers should tell you who is handling your claim and prove their worth. Often personal injury claims are managed by claims management companies, where the staff may not be fully qualified to litigate. This also means that your case may not receive the level of attention it deserves.
  • Be suspicious of the first offer – Lawyers will very rarely accept the first offer, as it can often be a lowball – a deliberately very low offer, often to test the waters. There is no risk to the opposite party from making a lowball offer, so you should be extremely suspicious of any lawyer that suggests you take the first amount offered.
  • Don’t be pressured into settling quickly – There’s no denying the process is stressful, but if you settle as quickly as possible then you will likely not get as much compensation. You may also choose to settle when you have made a full physical and psychological recovery from your injury should you begin the process so that you have all the medical evidence possible.
  • Ensure a proper medical report has been generated – this will allow a professional lawyer to evaluate your claim properly.
  • Make sure your lawyer knows the gravity of your injuries – receiving compensation that matches your injuries is important, so ensure that your lawyer knows the effects your injury is having on your life. If you need future care and rehabilitation, this must be taken into account, as it will affect you and your family’s future financial stability.

Don’t risk it

At Foys, we understand how frustrating an under-settled personal injuries claim can be. Our team of specialist personal injury solicitors have a wealth of experience in winning these types of cases for our clients. Unlike inexperienced claims handlers, we care about your case and will do everything we can to handle it professionally the first time around.

To find out more, get in touch using our Online Form – or give us a call on 01302 327136. Alternatively, drop us an email at enquiries@foys.co.uk.

If you found this useful, take a look at:

November 6th, 2019

Civil dispute solicitors

With the help of our civil dispute advisors and experts, you can rely on us for sound legal advice and support regarding the prevention or resolution of a civil dispute.

Civil disputes are never pleasant and, sometimes, unavoidable. However, with us fighting your corner, you can rest assured knowing that your voice will be heard. Our team will provide you with expert legal advice and support every step of the way.

We understand that pursuing a civil dispute can be overwhelming and we will do everything in our power to make you feel at ease and alleviate your concerns. It’s for this reason why we updated our Civil Disputes page – so you can learn more about civil disputes and how we can help you.

On this page, we explain the areas of civil dispute law that we cover, including:

  • Boundary disputes
  • Property disputes
  • Landlord and tenant matters
  • Contract disputes
  • Professional negligence
  • Wills and estate disputes
  • Dispute over faulty goods

We also explore the various civil dispute resolution options available to you.

Contact Foys Solicitors for legal advice regarding civil disputes

For a free initial consultation or more information on our civil dispute services, give us a call on 01302 327136. Alternatively, you can email us at enquiries@foys.co.uk or complete our Contact Form.

October 30th, 2019

Family Mediation Solicitors

Close-up of married couple's hands in an affectionate pose

Our team of experienced and supportive family mediators is here to help you resolve sensitive issues between family members, without the need for going to court.

As a person looking for a cost-effective tool to help resolve matters regarding divorce, childcare and finances, the involvement of a mediator could be the answer.

The family mediation team here at Foys Solicitors are committed to helping you find favourable solutions for all parties involved. Our passion for helping family members communicate and resolve disputes has led us to update our compassionate family mediation solicitors page with accurate and reliable information.

On this page, you’ll find out how we can help you with issues to do with:

  • Divorce
  • Separation
  • Childcare
  • Money and finances
  • Property

Contact Foys Solicitors team of family mediators today

If you would like a free initial consultation on our services, call us on 01302 327136, email us at enquiries@foys.co.uk or complete our Contact Form.

For more information on how mediation can help your family, take a look at How mediation can help your family during a divorce.

October 23rd, 2019

Medical negligence solicitors

With the assistance of our experienced medical negligence law solicitors, you can depend on us for expert advice and support if you are looking to pursue a compensation claim regarding medical negligence.

The impacts of medical negligence (also referred to as clinical negligence) can cause far-ranging and often irreversible changes to a person’s life. As a victim of medical negligence, it is often hard to know where to start with making a claim for compensation. A good understanding of and support throughout the process can ensure that you’re able to make the best decisions for your case.

The medical negligence team at Foys Solicitors is here to help victims of medical negligence claim this compensation. Our dedication for helping those on the receiving end of such negligence has led us to update our medical negligence law solicitors page with trustworthy and useful information.

On the page, you’ll find out how we can help you with:

  • Gynaecology/Obstetrics/Birth Cases
  • Hospital cases including orthopaedics and general surgery
  • GP, dental and optical cases
  • Claims relating to residential care
  • Fatal accidents
  • Private cosmetic surgery
  • Medical misdiagnosis

Contact Foys Solicitors’ medical negligence team today

No matter the circumstances, our solicitors and services are here to help you. For a free initial consultation on what we can offer, call us on 01302 327136, email us at enquiries@foys.co.uk or complete our Contact Form.

For those wanting more information on medical negligence, see How is medical negligence established?

October 16th, 2019

Making arrangements after a diagnosis of dementia

The time after a diagnosis of dementia can be difficult and confusing with emotions running high. There are a number of important arrangements that need to be made to secure the future of the individual diagnosed.

There are around 850,000 people in the UK living with dementia, and numbers are predicted to increase to over 1 million by 2025. There is a wealth of support available for dementia-sufferers in order to ensure they receive the support and their needs are met.

At Foys, we understand the pressure and confusion following a diagnosis so we’ve put together this guide to inform you of the help that is available which you can use to formulate an action plan. The following areas need to be considered:

Paperwork

It is important to sort out and organise all your paperwork, ensuring that that it is easily accessible. This would include documents related to banking, mortgage, insurance policies, pension, stocks, investment etc. Seek legal advice from Foys’ specialist solicitors who have a wealth of experience in setting up a trust that will be beneficial to you now and in the future.

Banking

Support is available for managing your money at dementia friendly banks such as HSBC. From keeping track of your spending to helpful ways to protect your money such as Voice ID, HSBC staff are ‘Dementia Friends’, trained to help people living with dementia. You can also nominate a family member or a friend to support you with your account at present or in the future. They can carry out numerous activities related to your account including withdrawing cash and obtaining bank statements. For more information, contact your local HSBC bank. Some options depend on certain circumstances and require legal authorisation such as a lasting power of attorney – Foys can help you set this up.

Driving

If you have been diagnosed with dementia, you are required to inform the DVLA immediately; failure to do so can result in a fine of £1,000 or prosecution in the event of an accident. Your car insurance provider also needs to be informed. Depending on the doctor’s instruction, the DVLA will decide whether a person suffering from dementia can continue to drive and if so, they will be issued with a new driving license. In some cases, the doctor and the DVLA may declare that the individual can no longer drive and as a result, their licence will be revoked. The cases vary depending on every individuals’ personal circumstances. For more information, visit the Alzheimer’s UK page on Driving with dementia.

Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA)

A lasting power of attorney (LPA) is a legal document that allows you (the donor) to nominate a trusted family member or friend (the attorney) to make legal decisions on your behalf when you lose the mental capacity to do so. There are two types of LPA’s, one regarding your property and financial affairs and the other related to your health and welfare. Through the health and welfare LPA, your attorney will be able to make arrangements for your daily care, medical care and even decide to move you into a care home. This can only happen when the donor has lost the mental capacity to make these decisions for themselves.

Having an LPA is important to protect your affairs ensure your needs are met when you are no longer able to communicate them. At Foys, our specialist solicitors strive to act in your best interests and will help you draft an LPA.

Making a will

Though it may seem like a morbid affair, a Will is very important to protect your future. A Will allows you to decide how you want you want your estate to be distributed after you pass as well as specific other wishes you may have. If you pass away without a Will, your family or loved ones may be faced with difficulties and emotional distress as the courts will decide what happens to your estate through a lengthy process called probate.

Foys understands and champions the protection of the elderly and can help you to ensure your needs are met when the time comes.

Living Will

You can also consider a Living Will. A Living Will allows you to state your wishes related to end-of-life medical care in the circumstance that you are unable to communicate your needs. Dementia affects your ability to think, remember and communicate clearly as well as make sound judgement and decisions; over time this can worsen resulting in a loss of mental ability. Through a Living Will, you can assign instructions for your care and even refuse certain treatments before your dementia progresses. While we can help you with writing a Living Will, it is important to consult with your doctor before making any decisions regarding your treatment.

Claim benefits

Those living with dementia and their carers may be entitled to benefits depending on a range of factors such as income or income. It can be a complex process as the forms to apply for the benefits can be lengthy and confusing. There are different types of benefits available including attendance allowance and carer’s allowance as well as general state pensions and housing benefits. We can support you with your application for claiming benefits to ensure you’re receiving all the financial help that’s available to you. For further detailed information on the different benefits, read the dementia guide by the Alzheimer’s Society UK.

Care needs assessment

In order for the local authority to understand your needs and the non-medical support you require, an assessment called a community care assessment should be arranged through the social services or your GP. The process includes a discussion with those involved in your care such as family or friends as well as a questionnaire (not always) to detail your living and care situation. With this information, social services will assign a social worker to plan the care you require. In some cases, you may be allocated a personal budget to help with covering some of the costs of your care service.

Stay active and stay healthy.

It is important to maintain a healthy lifestyle after your diagnosis by staying active, having a balanced diet with the essential nutrients and avoiding consumption of unhealthy options. Regular check-ups with your doctor, dentist and optician should also be arranged. A live-in or home care supporter can help to ensure your wellbeing and support you with the changes.

Foys Solicitors can help you make arrangements after your diagnosis of dementia

At Foys, our elderly care solicitors can provide legal advice and support for making arrangements after a diagnosis of dementia. We offer a free initial consultation where we will discuss your needs and explain the best next steps are.

For a free initial consultation or more information on our employment law services, contact your local Foys office. Alternatively, you can email us at enquiries@foys.co.uk or complete our Contact Form.

If you found this interesting, check out:

This post is not legal advice and should not replace professional advice tailored to your specific circumstances. It is intended to provide information of general interest about current legal issues.

October 10th, 2019

Foys Solicitors takes part in Will Month for Sheffield Hospitals Charity

Will Month 2019At Foys Solicitors, we firmly believe in giving back to our local community – we regularly take part in charity events.

October 2019 is Will Month for Sheffield Hospitals Charity, who help thousands of patients and their families during difficult times.

Foys will be offering our will-writing services for free, and in return, all we ask is for a donation to Sheffield Hospitals Charity. Our two Sheffield offices (Chapeltown and Crystal Peaks) will be taking part in this year’s charity event.

We cannot predict tomorrow and the consequences of not having a Will can be devastating for the loved ones you leave behind. Our expert solicitors are on hand to guide you through the process of writing your Will. Take this opportunity to give yourself and your family peace of mind, while supporting a fantastic charity.

All you need to do is contact Sheffield Hospitals Charity on 0114 226 7351 or visit www.sheffieldhospitalscharity.org.uk/event/willmonth to receive your unique booking code. Once you have your code, just call the Sheffield Crystal Peaks office on 0114 251 1702 or for Chapeltown, 0114 246 7609 to book an appointment!

October 9th, 2019

What to do when you’ve been injured by an uninsured driver

Injured in car accident by uninsured driver

Many of those who have been in an accident follow a straightforward procedure of swapping license plate numbers and leaving the rest to the insurance company.

However, there are times when it isn’t that simple. The person may have been severely injured, and when it comes to dealing with it, they find out the bad news – they don’t have insurance.

While it may seem like a dead-end, there are things you can do at this point. In this article, the professional motoring offences team at Foys Solicitors help you to get to grips with seeking compensation after being hit by an uninsured driver.

Take note at the scene

Ideally, it would be good if you or your passenger could note down the involved vehicles make, model and registration number, as well as any witness statements and contact details. Any evidence you can use, to prove that the accident was not your fault is preferable; this can also be in photo form. Take note of the damage inflicted to your vehicle, as you can claim repairs from your own insurer.

If the person driving the other vehicle refuses to give you the details of their insurance, you may make a formal complaint to the police.

Check your contract

Before you begin any kind of process against an uninsured driver, you should always check your contract. Depending on your insurer, you may have one of a few types of protection:

  • Protected no claims bonus – when hit by an uninsured driver, you are often forced to claim on your own insurance, which instantly ruins your no claims benefits. Some companies will preserve your bonus if the other driver is uninsured, though they may still raise your premium when the time comes to renew it.
  • Waived excess – if you have comprehensive insurance, you will have to claim on your own policy, which is understandably frustrating. Many insurers recognise this and will waive your claim excess, so it doesn’t cost you money to make a claim. This often comes from companies that have an uninsured driver promise.

Bear in mind that even with these types of protection, the companies will still deduct the no claims bonus and ask you to pay the excess while the claim is being decided, returning both if it is ruled in your favour. It may also increase the premium you pay when it comes time to renew your insurance.

Not all companies offer this protection, and many offer variations or combinations of them, so it’s always worth checking beforehand to make sure you take advantage of any protection you may already have.

The Motor Insurer’s Bureau

The Motor Insurer’s Bureau (MIB) is an independent organisation set up by insurance companies. Their purpose is to compensate people who have been hit by uninsured or untraceable drivers, entering into agreements with the UK government to do so.

They can help in the UK and in Europe, but the conditions under which they can help vary between countries. A full list can be found on their official website. In addition, these claims can take anywhere from 3 months to a year to be completed, depending on the complexity of the case.

The MIB carry out their own investigations into the case, obtaining independent reports from motor engineers or witnesses, collecting police reports and contacting the DVLA and your insurer. If you are claiming for personal injury you may need to provide your medical records.

There are a few instances where the MIB will be unable to help you, including if you were a passenger in a vehicle driven by a drunk driver, if the accident didn’t take place in a public area or if you were in a vehicle which you should have known wasn’t insured.

Get help from Foys – personal injury and motoring offence solicitors

At Foys Solicitors, our personal law team has expertise in many fields of law, from motoring accidents to personal injury, and we can help you pursue potential options if you’ve been hit by an uninsured driver.

We will support you through the process, so the stress of the accident doesn’t follow you into your future.

To find out more, get in touch using our Online Form – or call your local Foys Solicitors office:

Before you go, take a look at some of our other articles:

This post is not legal advice and should not replace professional advice tailored to your specific circumstances. It is intended to provide information of general interest about current legal issues.

October 2nd, 2019

Personal injury solicitors

Personal Injury Lawyers in South YorkshireSuffering an injury is a distressing experience and can have a devastating impact on your life.

Our expert team of personal injury solicitors can assess your case and help you get the compensation you’re entitled to. We understand the worries you may have after suffering an injury, especially if it is preventing you from going back to work and thus affecting your financial situation. At Foys, we have years of experience in dealing with such cases so you can trust that we will work hard to make a successful claim.

We work on a no win, no fee basis, which means that if your case is unsuccessful for any reason, you won’t be liable to pay any costs.

The areas of personal injury covered include:

  • Road traffic accidents
  • Accidents at work
  • Slips and trips
  • Serious injuries and fatal accidents
  • Neglect and abuse claims
  • Criminal injuries claims
  • Injuries caused by faulty goods

For more information regarding how we can help you, check out our recently updated ‘Personal Injury’ page. Here we explain in depth the mentioned areas of law that we cover.

The process to make your personal injury claim can begin with a FREE consultation where we will discuss your case thoroughly in order to understand your situation.

Contact Foys Solicitors for advice on a personal injury claim today

To book an initial free consultation or to find out more about our Personal Injury services, call on 01302 327136 to book your FREE initial consultation. Alternatively, you can send us a message via our Contact Form.

September 25th, 2019

Protection of the elderly

Protection of the elderly servicesOur experienced elderly solicitors support the elderly generation to organise the legalities surrounding their health and finances to ensure a secure future.

The elderly care legal experts at Foys Solicitors have experience in helping senior people with legal advice to protect their interests, meet their needs and safeguard their future.

The areas that we cover include:

  • Lasting Powers of Attorney
  • Deputyship
  • Trusts
  • Advice on planning for care home fees
  • Advice on protecting your estate
  • Alzheimer’s and Dementia: Legal and financial planning

Contact Foys Solicitors for advice on how we protect the elderly

To get the right legal advice and support to safeguard your financial interests as well as your future health and wellbeing, simply get in touch with Foys Solicitors’ Protection of the Elderly team by phoning 01302 327136 today.

Please note that although we use the word ‘Solicitor’, your case could be carried out by a legal advisor, Legal Executive, or Paralegal depending on the nature of the case.

September 18th, 2019

Property and Conveyancing Solicitors

At Foys, we have years of expertise in property law and offer our advice on a range of property matters.

The legal details of property law can be complex – our experienced property and conveyancing solicitors can help you understand the legal details and support you with issues that may arise.

The property matters that we can assist with:

  • Buying and selling properties
  • Renting and letting properties, including buy-to-let
  • Declaration of Trust (Deed of Trust)
  • Buying a council house (Right to Buy)

For more information regarding how we can help you, check out our recently updated ‘Property and Conveyancing Solicitors for the South Yorkshire Region‘ page. Here we explain in depth the mentioned areas of law that we cover.

Contact Foys Solicitors for advice on Property and Conveyancing today

We strive to ensure we exceed the needs of our clients and offer a FREE initial consultation so we can discuss your situation and assess your case.

To book an initial free consultation or to find out more about our Personal Injury services, call us on 01302 327136. Alternatively, you can send us a message via our Contact Form.