Compensation for an acute injury


An acute injury is usually defined as a condition that presents itself quickly and responds well to treatment. However, if the acute injury isn’t treated within a short time span, it can become a chronic problem. Compensation might be required then to alleviate your suffering.

Defining an acute injury

Acute injuries are those which appear and progress immediately but are of limited duration. They can disappear and reappear, unlike chronic pain which is constant. However, this is not to say acute injuries cannot be the precursor to chronic pain.

They are a common result of road accidents or sports-related activities, and can include:

  • Minor burns and cuts
  • Muscle strains and sprains

They are best cured by using the acronym RICE - a combination of rest, ice, compression and elevation. Regardless of how serious or minor the damage, acute injuries which are the fault of another party could mean that you are entitled to compensation.

Types of acute injury

You could suffer an acute injury because of a road accident you have been involved in. An acute injury such as whiplash can respond well to immediate treatment. If you have suffered an injury because of a road accident where the other driver was at fault, you could qualify for compensation.

You should consult with a qualified solicitor, as they can assess your case.

It is also possible to suffer an acute injury while at work. Your employer should have carried out a risk assessment of your working space to identify any potential hazards. If you think your employer has not carried out this assessment, or had not taken steps to avoid your accident, you could have a case for compensation.

You may also have an acute injury because you are the victim of a crime. You may qualify for a compensation payment of between £1,000 and £500,000, depending on your injury. The Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) governs these compensation payments.

You should contact the CICA and explain the injury you have sustained. They can advise you if your case and injury does indeed qualify for a compensation payment.

Claiming compensation

The amount of compensation you receive is dependent on the type of injury you sustain and its long-term implications. Medical evidence will be necessary in every case alongside a clear link between the accident and the injury. It will also be necessary to show that the person you are making a claim against owed you a duty of care and that the breach of that duty of care led to your injury.

For example, all road users have a duty of care towards each other and any party that is speeding resulting in an accident is in breach of their duty of care.

If you are the victim of personal injury, including those other than acute injuries, you should bring your claim within three years of the accident (or knowledge of the injury). This is known as the limitation period, and if you do not act within this you risk losing your entitlement. This period is extended to the age of 21 in the case of children.

The payment of compensation for an acute injury no matter how it was sustained often has a legal component that you must consider. Your area has solicitors with which we have a relationship that have expertise in personal-injury law and how the criminal compensation system operates.

Take their advice as soon as you can to ensure you receive any compensation you are eligible for.

For specific information on sustaining whiplash, see our page on whiplash injuries.

If you have suffered an injury, no matter how small, which was not your fault, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact Law can recommend specialists in personal injury law to assist you in bringing a case against the negligent party for compensation. Please call us on 0800 1777 162 or complete the web-form above.

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