If you have sustained a traumatic brain injury and are making a claim for compensation, your initial thought may be that your solicitor can and will only assist you with the legal process and nothing more. However, your solicitor can do a lot more to support you.
In this blog, we’ll look at some ways your solicitor can help you and different situations they can be involved, over and above handling your claim. They can include:
- Accessing, arranging and funding treatment and rehabilitation
- Discussing your ongoing needs and progress with current NHS providers
- Contact or signpost you to charities that could assist in your recovery or provide support
- Be there to support you with your recovery and be a listening ear
- Advice and signposting on benefits
- Signposting for arranging a Personal Injury Trust (if required)
- Progress your claim without unnecessary delays
- Keep you up to date with the progress and next steps in your claim in a way that you prefer
- Working with in house Client Support Managers to ensure you receive the best possible rehabilitation.
Accessing, arranging and funding treatment and rehabilitation
If you or your family member has sustained a brain injury, you may need additional treatment and rehabilitation to help with your recovery. Your solicitor may be able to fund this treatment and rehabilitation privately if it is unavailable through the NHS or there are long waiting lists.
This funding may be accessed by asking the Defendants if they will release some of your compensation before the final settlement is agreed if it is likely that your claim will be successful. However, this can sometimes take some time and delay access to this much-needed treatment and rehabilitation. At CFG Law, we also have an emergency fund that can help to plug any gaps in your support and pay for immediate access to treatment and rehabilitation if the Defendants do not release any funds and we are confident that your claim will be successful.
Your solicitor will be able to research and advise on suitable providers in your local area, discuss the options with you so that you can choose the provider you would feel most comfortable with. They will then arrange for you to see them for an initial assessment.
After the initial assessment, treatment will be recommended for you. If you wish to undergo this treatment, your solicitor can contact the provider directly and arrange this for you. During your treatment, they can contact the provider on your behalf and obtain updates on how you are progressing and provide them with any further information that you want them to.
Discussion with NHS providers
If you are receiving treatment through the NHS, your solicitor and our Client Support Managers can also assist with this. With your permission, they can contact your GP, hospital, or anyone else who is providing you with care and treatment and discuss your recovery and the next steps. This can help to ease some of the strain on you and your family. They can also discuss updates with you and your family and ensure you are happy with everything, as well as discuss this with any medico-legal experts who are instructed on the case to gather evidence.
If you have an appointment with a medico-legal expert who suggests that you may need further treatment or more specialised treatment than you are receiving, your solicitor can help to advocate on your behalf to the treating team and help you to get the correct treatment in place.
Signposting to charities
CFG Law works closely alongside numerous charities. Your solicitor can signpost or contact a local charity or specialised charity (e.g. Headway) for you, who could provide you and your family with ongoing support with managing any symptoms and changes to your lives. This support can be provided one to one or in group sessions (this will depend on the individual charity). Many experienced brain injury solicitors will already have contacts at different local charities and will be able to quickly introduce you to the relevant people for your support needs.
Support for you and your family
Your solicitor will be dealing with your legal claim against the Defendant and pushing to get the compensation that you deserve. However, in addition to the legal process, they can be there for you to provide you and your family members with support regarding your ongoing treatment and symptoms following your injury. They provide legal advice together with financial, physical and emotional support.
A solicitor will achieve the best outcome for you if they know your personal circumstances so your claim can be tailored for your needs. It’s therefore essential that you instruct a solicitor with who you are comfortable and can contact any time, with any problems you may have.
Advice and signposting for benefits
After suffering a brain injury, you may find yourself in financial difficulty, due to being unable to work. Therefore, to assist, you would need to gain help from the government in the form of benefits. This can be a difficult, daunting and stressful process for some, if you do not know what you are entitled to claim or find the forms difficult to complete, especially after the effects of an injury.
Your firm of solicitors may have Financial Advisors or Client Support Managers who work as part of the team, and they can arrange for them to have a conversation with you or your family member to discuss what types of benefits you would be able to claim. In addition, they could assist you in finding the forms and completing these.
If this is not available, your solicitor could provide you with brief advice as to what benefits are available and signpost you to someone who could assist in giving you detailed information on what you can claim and completing the applications. This could include an external financial advisor, a charity or the Citizens Advice Bureau.
Personal Injury Trusts
If you receive means-tested benefits from the government or may wish to claim them in the future, the amount you receive in compensation may affect these. Your solicitor can provide you with a factsheet and advice as to how any payments you receive could impact your benefits and the reasons why.
To protect both your compensation and your eligibility for benefits, you need to set up a Personal Injury Trust. The Trust protects any money you receive so that it will not affect your means-tested benefits. If this is required, your solicitor can signpost you to a financial advisor who will provide you with further advice on Personal Injury Trusts and arrange everything for you.
The above are just some examples where a solicitor can do more for you than handle your claim. Your solicitor can be there to take the strain and some daunting situations away from you and your family so that you can concentrate on your recovery.