Are you likely to pay an inflated success fee?

Read the M R Law blog | M R Law Solicitors

Are you likely to pay an inflated success fee?

Are you likely to pay an inflated success fee?

One of the main growth areas in recent years has been Claims Management Companies acting upon behalf of individuals who seek to challenge success fees charged by their own solicitors.

In fact, some Claims Management Companies have arisen seemingly for the sole purpose of challenging and reducing success fees as they allege overcharging by solicitors has become commonplace.

Many firms of solicitors will act upon behalf of clients by way of a no-win, no fee agreement when pursuing a claim for personal injury or medical negligence. This ensures that clients may not initially be responsible for payment of any of the legal costs. However, the vast majority of firms will then charge their clients a success fee payable at the conclusion of the case being a percentage of the damages recovered.

The success fee is supposed to represent the risk of the solicitors conducting the case without any guarantee of payment so it should be calculated having taken into account the particular facts of the claim, including the prospects of success.

However, invariably many firms will simply charge their clients the maximum success fee permitted under the regulations of anything up to 25% of their damages.   This means that if an individual recovers say £20,000.00, they are then responsible for paying £5,000.00 to their own solicitors come what may, permanently reducing the damages the injured person keeps from the claim.

Unlike the vast majority of firms of solicitors dealing with personal injury and medical negligence work, we purposely do not charge success fees.

Ann Mahoney, head of the Personal Injury team at M R Law comments:

“Some Claims Management Companies may allege a success fee paid by a client to their own solicitors was too high. However, the process for seeking a reduction is complicated and there is no guarantee of success.

Unlike the vast majority of firms of solicitors dealing with personal injury and medical negligence work, we purposely do not charge success fees, therefore our clients will not have to approach Claims Management Companies to try to reduce any amounts we have charged.

We recover the legal costs from the other party and our clients are not responsible for paying anything. We do not believe any damages correctly belonging to our client should be reduced by paying our legal costs. In our view, there is no need to charge our clients any success fees.”

You will not be responsible for paying a success fee or an insurance premium under a no win, no fee agreement with M R Law. Please contact us to discuss your requirements and to speak directly to a qualified and experienced lawyer.

Woman was incorrectly told she had suffered a miscarriage

Woman was incorrectly told she had suffered a miscarriage

A woman who was told at hospital that she had suffered a miscarriage when her baby was still alive has recovered an award of damages for the severe emotional distress she experienced.

She had originally gone to hospital concerned about her pregnancy after she suffered bleeding whilst at home. After undergoing a scan, the hospital told her she had miscarried and she was booked in to have a procedure to remove her baby.

Prior to returning to that hospital for the removal of her alleged, deceased baby, she attended the A&E Department of a different hospital because she continued to be in pain and was still bleeding.

That hospital arranged a further scan whereupon she was told that her unborn baby was still alive as there was a fetal heartbeat although there was a large haematoma around her baby. This was causing her bleeding.

She received reassurance and advice that she would need further monitoring and the blood would eject itself.

Sadly, several weeks later, she went on to miscarry her baby but by that stage, she had endured an unnecessary period of emotional pain and suffering after being told her baby had died.

There was a failure of the first hospital to interpret correctly the scan readings leading our client to believe she had suffered an incomplete miscarriage

Tracy Brimelow of the Medical Negligence team at M R Law who dealt with the case comments:

“For anyone receiving the news they have suffered a miscarriage it is devastating. Our client suffered unnecessary trauma and the knowledge that had she proceeded with the planned procedure at the first hospital she would have terminated a viable and much wanted pregnancy.

There was a failure of the first hospital to interpret correctly the scan readings leading our client to believe she had suffered an incomplete miscarriage. Fortunately, our client received the correct advice and care at the second hospital she attended where she was treated with sensitivity and provided with support.

The first hospital accepted they had made mistakes with the care of our client and we were able to secure a satisfactory offer of settlement on her behalf.”

If you have suffered complications arising from a pregnancy or the birth of your child, please contact our specialist medical negligence team to speak directly to a qualified and experienced lawyer.

 

Hospital errors in care of the elderly

Hospital errors in care of the elderly

Whenever any patient remains in hospital, it is vital they receive a suitable level of nursing care and attention, especially so for the elderly who might have greater needs and health problems to manage.

The vast majority of patients receive excellent care from dedicated and committed staff, sometimes in difficult and trying circumstances. However, there are occasions when that care falls below a reasonable standard and there are often severe consequences for the patients.

Elderly patients often have particular care needs. We have dealt with cases recently where the care of elderly patients was mismanaged whilst they were in hospital. ~Robert Barker

Robert Barker, head of the Medical Negligence team at M R Law has dealt with a number of cases recently where the care of elderly patients whilst they were in hospital was not of an adequate standard.

“Elderly patients often have particular care needs. They might require more intensive nursing care or lengthier stays in hospital. For the vast majority of time that care is provided without problems but occasionally things go wrong.

We have dealt with cases recently where the care of elderly patients was mismanaged whilst they were in hospital.

For example, one patient was allowed to become seriously dehydrated with increased sodium levels due to a failure of the hospital to supply him with fluids, causing him to suffer severe health problems in addition to the symptoms for which he had first been admitted. Another elderly patient suffered extensive bruising after being roughly manhandled by nursing staff and a further patient who was suffering with dementia was allowed to get out of bed on numerous occasions, as a result which she fell multiple times suffering various severe injuries.

Sadly, some of these patients died whilst in hospital or soon after leaving hospital. We were able to investigate upon behalf of their relatives the care provided by the hospitals and demonstrate on each occasion the treatment fell below a reasonable standard, before going on to achieve satisfactory outcomes not only for the relatives but also with the hope that similar problems did not arise in the future. “

If you or any relatives have suffered complications arising from treatment received whilst a patient in hospital, please contact our specialist medical negligence team to speak directly to a qualified and experienced lawyer.

Substantial settlement for excess prescribing of zinc supplements

Substantial settlement for excess prescribing of zinc supplements

M R Law has successfully recovered substantial damages upon behalf of a man who suffered severe and life changing symptoms due to the excessive prescribing of zinc supplements.

A number of years ago the man underwent major surgery following an emergency admission to hospital. As part of his recovery, the hospital then prescribed zinc tablets to assist with the healing of his wounds.

Despite thereafter attending at two hospitals over a period of approximately 8 years his medication remained unchanged and he continued to take the zinc supplements.

Sadly, this led him to suffer neurological damage caused by excessive levels of zinc in his body. This affected his ability to walk and to use his hands, severely affecting the quality of his life.

Although he was eventually advised to cease taking the zinc supplements, the damage had been done and his neurological symptoms would never improve.

Robert Barker, head of the Medical Negligence team at M R Law who dealt with the case comments:

This was an extraordinary case. Those supplements are available as over-the-counter medication and it is not generally appreciated the potential complications that can arise if taken to excessive levels.. ~Robert Barker

“This was an extraordinary case. Our client was prescribed zinc supplements to aid his recovery. Those supplements are available as over-the-counter medication and it is not generally appreciated the potential complications that can arise if taken to excessive levels.

In this case, the hospitals should have advised our client to stop taking the zinc supplements many years ago during his regular medication reviews. He suffered an overdose of zinc, also affecting the copper level in his body and the consequences for our client were devastating.

The case required extensive investigations over a lengthy period against multiple parties, in particular to show the problems caused by the zinc supplements.

Eventually, two different hospitals accepted that they were at fault for failing to stop the supplements many years beforehand. Thereafter, we were able to secure a substantial award of
damages for our client based on the difficulties he would experience for the remainder of his life.”

If you have suffered complications arising from the incorrect prescribing of medication, please contact our specialist medical negligence team to speak directly to a qualified and experienced lawyer.

M R Law logo

Problems for patient following elbow replacement surgery

A man whose elbow replacement surgery went wrong has recovered a substantial award of damages with assistance from M R Law.

He had first attended hospital after suffering a severe elbow injury whilst playing tennis. The surgeon recommended a complete elbow replacement operation without warning him of the consequences, for example his inability ever to return to the physical work he had done in the past.

To compound matters, the elbow replacement was then incorrectly placed and it took over another two years for this to be recognised with a further couple of years for the patient to undergo revision surgery.

In all, the individual had experienced in excess of four years of pain and discomfort in his elbow. Despite then undergoing revision surgery, his problems were likely to persist in the future.

We able to demonstrate that the treatment the hospital provided fell below a reasonable standard

Tracy Brimelow of the Medical Negligence team at M R Law who dealt with the case comments:

“I am relieved we were able to secure a substantial reward of damages upon behalf of our client.

At first, the hospital denied they had been at fault in any way for the additional symptoms our client had experienced. It was only through continued investigations and gathering of evidence were we able to demonstrate that the treatment they provided fell below a reasonable standard.

Those treating our client failed to give him an option of not undergoing an elbow replacement operation, as according to the evidence we obtained, despite the severity of his initial injury, his elbow was still treatable. Instead, our client underwent an elbow replacement that was always likely to prevent him performing physical work in the future, as a result of which he continued to suffer ongoing losses of earnings.

Our client had endured years of pain and further treatment, the vast majority of which could have been avoided. This affected all areas of his life including his ability to work and care for himself.

To achieve a positive outcome for our client was highly satisfactory as it gave him at least some reassurance for the future.”

If you have suffered complications arising from any form of orthopaedic treatment, please contact our specialist medical negligence team to speak directly to a qualified and experienced lawyer.