There are many things in life that we are prepared for, researching in advance to ensure that we make the right choices and receive the best service, things as simple as choosing a hairdresser based on recommendations of friends, or which garage to take our car to for a service, to more important decisions such as which school to send our children to or where to purchase a property.
But if someone you love sustains a brain injury, finding the best possible advice isn’t something that you necessarily have the time to research, or connections who can provide recommendations. But if you do find yourself catapulted into this situation where a loved one has sustained a brain injury, ensuring you get the best possible advice is so very important.
The initial concern following such an injury is rightly for the health of the person injured. But it is also important to consider whether the injury has resulted from an accident which was not their fault, maybe a car accident, an injury at work, an assault, or because of negligent medical care.
There is a culture in the United Kingdom that sees personal injury lawyers as so called ‘ambulance chasers’, ‘where there’s blame there’s a claim’ – we’ve all heard the slogans, but brain injury claims are life changing, not only for the person who has sustained the injury, but for close family and friends around them, whose life may be turned upside down as a result of the injury.
There will inevitably be concerns about money, especially if the injured person is the main breadwinner, but what about child care, does the person’s partner have an understanding employer who will allow time off, so they can spend as much time as possible with their loved one during recovery. If full recovery is unlikely, will the house need to be sold or adapted to accommodate mobility issues, will part time, or full time, carers be required?
Whilst full recovery from a whiplash accident could take a few weeks, full recovery from a brain injury, if even achievable, may take many years. Instructing a specialist solicitor in the early days could ease some of the burden, an experienced brain injury solicitor will, unfortunately, have dealt with the majority of your queries and concerns previously, when acting for other clients, and should be able to answer your questions, point you in the right direction, and ease some of your stress, enabling you to spend time with your loved one.
Where do you begin looking for a brain injury solicitor?
Whilst it may be tempting to contact your local firm of solicitors, maybe the ones who dealt with your house purchase on the high street, because they also deal with personal injury claims, brain injury claims are very complex. It is crucial to choose a solicitor who understands the complexities of brain injury to ensure the claim is not undervalued, that you have access to the right rehabilitation at the right time, and that you have funds to meet your long term needs, which could include rehabilitation, adapting your existing property or purchasing a new one and the purchase of specialist equipment, as well as providing for any future loss of earnings, all of which could be included within a claim.
Brain injury claims can be stressful and demanding at times, so a solicitor who understands this, who you are confident is working in YOUR best interests and who you will be happy to work with for several years is vitally important.
Whilst the internet allows us to deal with people many miles away as though they were sitting next to us, a brain injury specialist local to you will be able to meet face to face with you when needed, they will know about local services and support groups and they may actively work in the community to improve facilities in your area for those who have sustained a brain injury, for example by supporting or fundraising for their local Headway group.
How to choose a brain injury solicitor?
A good starting point for choosing a solicitor following a brain injury is to look for solicitors who are members of Brain Injury Group, Headway the brain injury charity, Association of Personal Injury Lawyers Brain Injury Experts panel or The Law Society Personal Injury Panel. Membership of any of these organisations’ panels would suggest a special interest, experience and expertise in the field.
Brain Injury Group Law Firm Members
Here at Brain Injury Group, we have members across England, Scotland and Wales, who specialise in brain injury work. To join, law firms need to meet our strict criteria which includes a demonstratable history of expertise and experience in brain injury litigation, including high value claims and those where the claimant is a protected party due to lack of mental capacity.
Our member firms commit to providing not only a high quality professional legal service, but also ensuring, as reasonably as possible, that they will facilitate the clients care pathway, actively promote the client’s rehabilitation, signpost to relevant local services, assist with the client’s other needs including management of immediate financial problems, housing, social security and vocational rehabilitation and to manage properly any mental capacity issues.
Further, we provide specialist training on brain injury topics free of charge to our law firm members, to assist them to keep up to date on latest developments, enhance their understanding of the medical side of brain injury, understand rehabilitation and what can, or cannot, be achieved as well as legal matters, delivered by a range of brain injury experts from the legal and medical world.
Via our directory and associate membership, we can introduce member law firms to specialist service providers such as neuro rehabilitation facilities, case managers, speech and language therapists, architects and financial advisers.
This means our member law firms can provide you with the best possible service and advice to ensure best possible outcomes for the injured party.
Doing our bit to support the community
As part of our commitment to improving outcomes and services in the community for those with a brain injury, Brain Injury Group provides free training to the NHS and private healthcare sector on legal and welfare matters.
For the public, we provide free access to a welfare benefits adviser and signposting to lawyers who have agreed to provide initial free advice on a whole range of legal matters in addition to brain injury claims, including the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme, Court of Protection, Education, house purchases, employment and family law.
LAWS – providing initial free legal advice
We also regularly publish useful information via our website and social media accounts on topics relevant to those with a brain injury or those supporting someone with a brain injury.
Our BIG brain injury directory features a wide range of specialist goods and services including travel insurance for people with a brain injury, care in the home providers, sports and leisure facilities, specialist equipment, holidays for the disabled and therapists. And if our directory and website don’t have the answer, drop us an email and we’ll do our best to find it!
The Brain Injury Group brain injury directory
Brain Injury is BIG
Via an annual fundraising event, we support the charity Brain Injury is BIG who provide emotional support via their telephone support line and small grants to the families of those who have a brain injury to assist with travel to hospital to visit relatives and the purchase of specialist equipment. To find out more about Brain Injury is BIG and the grants available, visit their website www.braininjuryisbig.org.uk
What is the Brain Injury Group?
Brain Injury Group is a free service designed to connect those affected by a brain injury (whether there is a claim or not) to a range of experts who may be able to offer advice and assistance.
If you’d like to find out more about the work of Brain Injury Group, you are at the right place! You can follow the links below to:
- Find a Brain Injury Group recommended brain injury solicitor
- Get free legal and welfare advice
- Find out more about funding care for a brain injured person
- A-Z Directory of goods and services
- The latest brain injury news and useful articles
- Get in touch with us via email at [email protected]
The Brain Injury Group exists to support individuals and families affected by brain injury and the health and social care professionals working in this specialist field. Our mission is to provide anyone affected by brain injury with access to advice on legal, financial and welfare benefit issues delivered by proven experts in the field who have been chosen not only for their skills and knowledge, but also for their passion and dedication to helping people.
As well as providing legal and welfare advice, Brain Injury Group provide training for legal, health and social care professionals. View our award winning Brain Injury Group brain injury training events.
How can Brain Injury Group help you?
If you would like advice about bringing a brain injury claim, capacity, deputyships, managing the award of compensation or any other aspect of brain injury welfare, legal or financial advice, we have specialist brain injury solicitors and Court of Protection solicitors who can assist.
You can find full details of Brain Injury Group members on our website or there are several ways to get in touch:
- Call us on 0800 612 9660 or 01737 852203
- Email us at [email protected]
- Complete this short enquiry form and we’ll get back to you
- Find a specialist brain injury solicitor near to you