Speak to a few solicitors who have experience dealing with medical negligence cases before deciding who you wish to use. An initial meeting with a solicitor should be free and leave you with no obligation to use them.
Making a claim can be difficult and emotional for parents and carers, especially in the early stages. Choosing a solicitor with the right experience, understanding and knowledge can make things much easier.
Questions to ask a medical negligence solicitor
Is the solicitor a member of the Clinical Negligence Accreditation Scheme?
Members have to maintain a high level of knowledge, skills, experience and practice in clinical negligence. Your solicitor should be a member of:
Does the firm have Lexcel, ISO9001 or equal accreditation?
Lexcel is the Law Society's international practice management standard. This certifies law firms meet the highest standards in case management, customer care and risk management. Lexcel assesses practices every year to ensure they meet the standards required.
Find out who will be dealing with your case. Make sure they have relevant experience and that they won't pass your case to a junior. Your solicitor must have enough time to assess your case and take part in all the important steps.
Does the firm have a good record of successful medical negligence claims?
For cerebral palsy claims, choose a practice already pursuing claims in this area. Ask about their experience in conditions like yours or your child's. How many recent cases have they dealt with and what was the outcome of those cases?
How many medical negligence specialist solicitors does the firm have?
This can show a firm's experience, ability to move a case forward and keep you informed.
How will the solicitor keep in touch with you?
Make sure your solicitor agrees to keep in regular contact so that you are well-informed. Is there another member of the legal team familiar with your claim if your solicitor is absent?
You may wish to know how they will communicate with you, in person, either in the office or at your home, by email or by telephone.