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:
Find out who will be dealing with your case. Make sure they have experience of conditions like yours or your child's. 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?
How many recent cases have the practice dealt with? What were the outcome of those cases?
How many medical negligence specialist solicitors does the firm have?
This may 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 with you. 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.
Does the firm have a Legal Aid Agency Clinical Negligence franchise?
Only firms with this franchise can apply for a Legal Aid certificate from the Legal Aid Agency if available.
Does the firm offer education, welfare benefit, community care and public law expertise?
It helps if you can deal with all these issues within the same firm. This will be especially useful when considering the wider social impacts of disability.