Information about Road Traffic Accidents

If you are unfortunate enough to be involved in a horrific road traffic accident, which was not your fault, then you may be entitled to make a personal injury compensation claim.

If you are a passenger in a car, van, bus or coach; which is involved in a collision, your personal injury compensation claim would be made against the insurance company of the person responsible for the accident, whether that is the driver of the vehicle you were travelling in or a third party driver (or both if necessary).

If you are a pedestrian, a motorcyclist, a pedal cyclist or a driver, your personal injury claim would be made against the insurance company of the person driving the vehicle; which collided with you.

You may also be able to make a claim for compensation if you are involved in a road accident abroad or on holiday.  Contact us on 08000 224 224 for more information.

Perhaps, the most common type of injury resulting from a road accident is whiplash; however, many other different injuries are possible.

Claiming Personal Injury Compensation

Action to take before starting a personal injury claim

As with all personal injury compensation claims, you would need to prove that another person was responsible for your personal injury (in this case the driver of the vehicle you were travelling in or the third party driver).

To help your case, you should take names, addresses and telephone numbers of any witnesses to the accident and take photographs of the accident locus if possible. If the third party driver has no valid insurance, leaves the scene or admits to driving a stolen vehicle, you should contact the Police immediately and report the incident.

If you are intending to claim expenses such as prescription costs and travelling expenses, remember to keep receipts as evidence.

Personal Injury Compensation Claim Advice

How to begin a personal injury claim following a Road Traffic Accident

If you or anyone you know has suffered an injury as a result of a road traffic accident, telephone us now for accurate claim advice.

There are strict time limits in place to make any injury claim.  For further information, contact us or visit our Questions Answered page.

Thompsons Solicitors are experts in all personal injury matters. We will be able to advise you whether or not you have a valid claim for compensation. Our specialist personal injury lawyers will be happy to talk you through the process of making a claim in plain English and will be happy to answer any questions or queries you may have. Telephone us now on 08000 224 224 or complete one of our online personal injury compensation claim forms.

Our Road Accident Clients

Jane was injured when she was hit by a car while walking across a petrol station forecourt. Watch her story to find out how Thompsons Solicitors helped Jane to secure compensation to pay for an automatic car which enabled her to regain her mobility.

Watch Jane's story

Examples of some of the Road Traffic Accident claims we have dealt with

  • When Scott's car was hit by another vehicle on his way to college, he was seriously injured.  He was in hospital for 3 weeks and after being discharged was housebound and in a wheelchair.  He had to learn to walk again and it was a struggle to get his life back together.  A colleague of his recommended he contact Thompsons for advice and he was glad he took his colleague's advice.  He was really happy with the service he received from Thompsons and said "My solicitor made sure that my compensation claim ran smoothly. I knew that whenever I had a question someone would be there to help and support me.”  To read more about Scott's case read Scott's Story.
  • When Mark Cook was involved in a horrific car accident he suffered a severe spinal cord injury which left him paralysed and confined to a wheelchair.  Thompsons helped him to recover £2.5m compensation which seems like a huge sum until you realise that the amount will have to last the 22 year old for the rest of his life and he will need a specially adapted house and car.  Mark's full story is reported on our News Desk.
  • Thompsons Solicitors helped Tracy Russell to recover compensation after she was injured whilst driving an ambulance.  She needed an operation on her shoulder but never fully recovered.  To read more about this case visit Tracy Russell's Story.
  • When Douglas Phillips was driving home from a night shift and was hit by a trailer which had become detached from a lorry, he had to be cut free from his vehicle.  He suffered crushed lungs, internal and head injuries and a serious foot injury requiring surgery and intensive care. He also suffered psychological injury from the trauma of the accident and injuries.  Mr Phillips' Trade Union, UNISON instructed Thompsons to deal with the case and we recovered £390,000 for him as an out of court settlement.  Mr Phillips was unable to return to work and still suffers from disability now.  His compensation is to make up for future medical care, domestic care, loss of wages and pension.  This story is reported in full on our News Desk and also on the TUC website.
  • Geoff O'Connell was offered just £50 compensation by the insurance company of the person who drove into the side of his van and he rejected their offer.  Thompsons went on to win £5,890 for him.  Mr O'Connell still suffers from flashbacks of the crash.  His story was reported in full on our News Desk.
  • Thompsons Solicitors have recently recovered £14,000 in compensation for a lady injured as a pedestrian. The lady was crossing the road using a pedestrian crossing and had almost reached the pavement, when she was hit by a car. The lady suffered a broken left radius as well as some soft tissue damage to her left ankle. Her thank you letter read: "I wish to thank you for your services and the amount you negotiated. I trust that you will have many more successful cases in the future and wish you all the very best".
  • When Erika Lucas was involved in a car accident and suffered a whiplash injury, she contacted Thompsons Solicitors for assistance. She was stationary at a roundabout when she was hit in the rear by another vehicle and sustained an injury to her neck, for which she required physiotherapy. Thompsons recovered £3,600 compensation for her and she recently wrote to us thanking us for helping her. Her letter said: "I was delighted to receive your letter dated 13th February 2006 enclosing a cheque for £3,600 in settlement on my claim. This amount was far more than I was expecting. I would like to pass on my grateful thanks to you and the team for their efforts in securing me such a good settlement. I would certainly recommend Thompsons to anyone in the future. Thanking you."
  • Mr Holt was injured as a pedestrian when he was hit by an uninsured driver whilst crossing the road. Thompsons specialist personal injury solicitors obtained £65,000 compensation from the Motor Insurers Bureau. An extract from Mr and Mrs Holt’s thank you letter read "May we thank you for all your kindness and care for our well-being and interest during the time you have dealt with our case".
  • Thompsons specialist personal injury solicitors were able to help when Chris Brierley suffered a whiplash injury when the taxi in which he was travelling became wedged between 2 coaches.  They obtained £1,250 compensation for him. An extract from his thank you letter read: "Could I also 'thank you' for all you have done on this matter.  Your work and actions have been some of the most 'professional' and 'efficient' I have experienced".
  • Union member turns to Thompsons after accident on bus. "I was involved in an accident while on a bus in York in November 2003. As the driver turned a corner at speed, I was thrown from my seat across the aisle. I struck my face and jaw on the bell bar and trapped my leg against the side panel of the seats.
    My injuries were pretty bad and I was off work for a month. I work as a Media and Publications Officer at City of York Council. I needed help from family members around the house and with shopping. I couldn't get to the gym for the first few months after the accident, and it was some time before I could cycle and swim again.
    I didn't know who to turn to at first, but as a member of the NUJ for 27 years, I was put in touch with Thompsons Solicitors and I never looked back. Without their help, the bus company would never have been held accountable for its actions. Thompsons were so professional and kept in touch with me all the time.
    Everyone I dealt with was friendly, approachable and professional. I couldn't fault them! Above all, I'm really pleased with the settlement they secured and the services they provided."
  • In 1994 we achieved the highest ever award at the time for a road traffic accident victim in the sum of £3.4 million. Since then Thompsons have settled many serious injury cases resulting in awards of compensation from one hundred thousand pounds to multi-million pound settlements.
  • When James was involved in a motorcycle accident at the age of 11, he suffered serious injuries including a brain injury which left him on life-support for 5 days, a broken pelvis and a broken collar-bone.  He needed to have an 8-inch plate in his leg and was in hospital for 3 months before returning home in a wheelchair.  His parents became his carers. Both James and the other motorcyclist who hit him were uninsured therefore other firms of solicitors were reluctant to take the case on.  When the family did find a firm of solicitors willing to help, they weren't successful in gaining any compensation and the family eventually came to Thompsons for advice.  Thompsons were successful in obtaining a significant sum of compensation for James and you can read more about this case by visiting James' Story.


News Stories about Road Traffic Accidents

News Stories we have published about Road Traffic Accident Claims we have dealt with

In the past, we have published many new stories about Road Traffic Accident claims we have dealt with, click here to read these.

The Motor Insurers' Bureau (MIB)

Road Accidents involving Untraced or Uninsured drivers

If you have been injured or your property has been damaged by an uninsured or untraced driver, you may still be able to make a claim for compensation via the Motor Insurers' Bureau or MIB.

The Motor Insurers' Bureau will expect you to have already tried to trace the driver / insurer concerned by reporting the accident to the police, to your own insurance company and making enquiries with the registered owner of the vehicle.

Certain conditions apply to claims made via the Motor Insurers' Bureau such as

  1. if the driver of the offending vehicle is untraced, you must at least be able to identify the vehicle to make a claim for property damage. 
  2. an excess of £300 will also be deducted from claims made under the untraced driver scheme for property damage after 1st October 1999 (the excess amount was £175 before this date).
  3. the Motor Insurers' Bureau will only deal with claims registered with them within 9 months of the accident.  They will also expect the accident to have been reported to the police within 5 days of the accident.

A member of the public wishing to enter a claim with the Motor Insurers' Bureau can either do so directly themselves or appoint a Solicitor to work on their behalf.

Road Accident Contacts

A list of organisations which may be able to help you following a Road Traffic Accident

The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) - is actively involved in the promotion of safety and the prevention of accidents in all areas of life - at work, in the home, and on the roads, in schools, at leisure and on (or near) water.

Brake - is a National Road Safety Charity.  Their aims are to 1) prevent death and injury on the roads through education of all road users and campaigning for Government improvements to road safety. 2) care for people who are bereaved or affected by serious injury in a road crash through support services, including a helpline and literature distributed through police officers.

Motor Insurers' Bureau (MIB) - compensate the victims of negligent uninsured and untraced motorists.

Your Local Police Force - if you need to report a non-emergency road accident to your local police force, you can find contact details here.  Obviously, in cases of emergency you should dial 999.

The Financial Ombudsman - if you have a complaint about your motor insurer which you have been unable to resolve directly with them, you can contact the ombudsman for impartial assistance.

Citizens' Advice Bureau - the Citizens Advice service helps people resolve their legal, money and other problems by providing free information and advice from nearly 3,400 locations, and by influencing policymakers.

You can also read more about how we can help with Road Traffic Accident claims for compensation by reading our Road Traffic Accidents Information Leaflet.