On this page, you are going to find a detailed guide to making a claim for compensation for negligent first aid. In the same way, an accident and injury lawyer can help you to make a personal injury claim, a medical negligence lawyer can help you to claim for clinical negligence. We will cover the duty of care first aiders must adhere to, and attempt to show why you could be eligible to make a claim.
Each claim has its own unique aspects. This means that even though we have tried to give you all of the information you need, you may still have questions about your own claim that are unanswered once you have read this guide. We can still help you if you do. To have them answered, please call our team on 0800 652 3087 and speak to an advisor.
Jump To A Section:
- A Guide On Claiming Compensation For Negligent First Aid
- What Is Negligent First Aid Treatment?
- Duty Of Care And The Application Of First Aid
- Best Practice Guidelines For Applying First Aid
- When Do You Use First Aid To Treat Accidents And Injuries?
- Obtaining Consent For First Aid Procedures
- Injuries Which Could Be Caused By A First Aider
- Negligent First Aid Claims Against Employers
- Time Limits To Claim For Negligent First Aid Treatment
- What Could I Claim? Compensation For Negligent First Aid
- No Win No Fee Claims For Negligent First Aid Treatment
- Contact Us To Begin A Claim
- Helpful First Aid Resources
A Guide On Claiming Compensation For Negligent First Aid
Within this guide to making first aid negligence claims, you should find all of the help and advice you need to begin making educated decisions about your claim. If you have ever used a personal injury solicitor to make a personal injury claim, much of this guide will seem familiar, as the process of making a medical negligence claim is similar in many ways.
We start the guide off with an introduction to what negligent first aid treatment is, and why, in general terms, it could be the basis of a compensation claim. We support this introduction with an explanation of what the duty of care is, that all first aiders must fulfil.
Next, we move on to cover information related to first aid, with a view to showing how first aid can result in injuries that a person could claim compensation for. We go over some of the best practices first aiders should adhere to. We also discuss when it is appropriate to use the services of a first aider and why. We list some of the more common kinds of injuries that a first aider could inflict on a patient, and explain why a first aider is supposed to get consent from a patient before they are treated.
In the last part of this guide, we detail some of the legal and financial aspects of making a compensation claim. We provide information about work-related accident and injury claims in relation to first aid administered at work. You will find general information about the time limit that could apply that you will need to make your claim within as well. There is a section that explains the kinds of damages you might be able to claim for, and gives a table of example injuries and the level of compensation they may expect to receive. Lastly, we try to show you what a No Win No Fee claim is, and explain why, in some circumstances, this could be the ideal vehicle for having your claim processed.
Once you have finished reading this guide, if you still have questions or simply want some general advice on making a claim, then call our team on the phone number down near the end of the page. One of our expert advisors will answer your questions, and provide you with any other assistance you might need.
What Is Negligent First Aid Treatment?
The aim of first aid is to provide the initial critical treatment for injuries, and hopefully stabilise the victim until proper treatment is available. In this situation, it is clear to see how negligent first aid could cause more harm than good.
First aiders are required to undergo professional training and regular skill refresher courses to keep their first aider status. And even though they are not considered a true medical professional, they are still expected to maintain the same duty of care towards patients as a medical professional (more on this below).
Furthermore, if you are receiving first aid at work, it is your employers’ responsibility to ensure that all company designated first aiders are fully trained and competent in their role, and that a sufficient number of first aiders are available. The Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 states that all employers are obligated to provide trained first aiders for their staff.
Therefore, if you receive first aid that actually harms instead of helps, somebody is going to be responsible for it. And as they say, where there is blame there is a claim. It could mean that you would be eligible to claim damages for the harm you have suffered.
Duty Of Care And The Application Of First Aid
When a trained person is giving first aid treatment, they are expected to uphold the same duty of care that a medical professional would. The Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974, states that all employers are obligated to provide trained first aiders for their staff.
A first aider is deemed to have accepted this duty of care when they begin treating a person who has suffered some kind of injury. They are expected to never do any harm to a patient that is unnecessary. Of course, in some cases, treatment will cause harm. For example, removing a glass splinter from a person’s hand. However, the harm that would be caused if the glass splinter was left in would outweigh the slight harm caused by removing it. This is what we mean by unnecessary harm.
If you have any questions about the duty of care, our team will be happy to explain it to you in full if you give them a call today.
Negligent Practicing Of First Aid
Most first aiders do not work for a state-run healthcare institute, and therefore negligent first aid will generally not be an example of NHS negligence. First aiders are generally private individuals who have either chosen to train as a first aider themselves or been nominated by a company or some other organisation as a designated first aider.
Whenever a first aider treats a victim, they will, at the time they first lay hands upon the patient, be deemed to have accepted responsibility. This is true for company-designated first aiders, and also for private citizens who step in to provide first aid after witnessing an accident.
However, there may be an additional third party that has a liability towards a person who has been harmed by the negligent acts of a first aider. An example could involve a football fan who is injured in an accident at a football stadium and is further harmed by negligence on the part of one of the first aiders working for the stadium operator. In this case, it could be that the stadium operator is responsible due to not ensuring first aiders were competent and trained properly.
If you are unsure which legal entity might be responsible in your own case, please call our team and speak to an advisor. They will be able to advise you further.
Best Practice Guidelines For Applying First Aid
Every person who becomes a first aider will have undertaken Government approved first aid courses. This is just part of the first aid requirements for becoming a registered first aider.
Each person who becomes qualified as a first aider should know when it is appropriate to administer first aid and when it is not. They should also know which kinds of injuries they should attempt to treat, and which they should leave for a medical professional to deal with. The NHS has published basic guidelines for people giving first aid. However, the training a qualified first aider will have received will go far beyond these simple instructions.
In any case, where these guidelines have not been followed and this has caused harm to the person receiving treatment, then it could be deemed that negligence has taken place. It is then possible that the victim will have the basis of a valid compensation claim. To have your claim evaluated, please speak to one of our advisors today.
When Do You Use First Aid To Treat Accidents And Injuries?
In order to understand how negligent first aid can occur; we first need to define the actual role of a first aider. Contrary to what most people believe, a first aider’s job is not to provide rectifying treatment at all. The role of a first aider is simply to assist somebody who has suffered harm or become ill, ensure that they are at no further risk of harm, and if possible, stabilise their condition until proper medical help is available.
This is a fairly narrow remit. It means that if a first aider steps beyond this clearly defined boundary and provides treatment that is not required to keep the person safe until they can receive proper medical attention, they could be at fault. They may be trying to help, but they could actually end up causing harm. In such cases, our claims team can advise you how you might be able to proceed with a claim of your own.
Obtaining Consent For First Aid Procedures
When it comes to giving first aid, the first aider must first obtain consent from the victim to provide treatment. If the victim declines first aid, then the first aider must then make a decision whether or not to proceed with treatment anyway.
In some cases, such as where the victim does not understand the seriousness of their condition, or when they lack the mental capacity to make the right decision themselves, first aid might still be administered. However, every first aider knows that crossing this line, once consent has been denied, could result in them being in the wrong. The decision to provide first aid if consent has been denied is not taken lightly.
If you believe a first aider has crossed the line and treated you when they should not have, and this has harmed you, talk to our claims team and find out whether you have a path to claiming damages.
Do You Need To Get Consent From Unconscious Victims?
The only exception to providing first aid without consent is when the victim is unconscious and unable to give consent. In this case, the first aider is only allowed to provide treatment that is critical in saving the victim’s life.
Once again, if you feel you were treated unnecessarily by a first aider and this caused you harm, call our claims team and speak to an advisor; you may be able to make a claim.
Injuries Which Could Be Caused By A First Aider
A medical negligence solicitor will need to prove that a first aider harmed you in order for your claim to be a success. Some of the kinds of injuries a first aider could cause are:
- An allergic reaction to a medication that was administered.
- An infection of a cut or laceration due to it not being cleaned properly.
- A delay in calling in medical professionals leading to a worsening of the victim’s health.
There are, of course, many more ways a first aider could harm you. If you have suffered due to negligence, call our team and explain how. They will tell you whether you have a potentially valid claim or not.
Negligent First Aid Claims Against Employers
We have already touched on the first aid at work regulations. These have to be followed in full, at all times, by every employer in the UK. Non-compliance could result in sanctions against the company.
If you can prove that your employer was to blame for you receiving negligent first aid, then you could be able to make a workplace injury claim. Call our team to learn more.
Time Limits To Claim For Negligent First Aid Treatment
Just as a personal injury claims time limit applies for accident and injury claims, there is a time limit for making medical negligence claims. In general, if the injured party is over the age of 18, then the time limit will be three years from the date the incident took place, or from the date a medical condition was first diagnosed.
There are differences to this three year limit in some cases, and our team can advise you which will apply in your own case if you give them a call.
What Could I Claim? Compensation For Negligent First Aid
If your claim is a success, you will receive an overall compensation payment made up of multiple kinds of damages. General damages are all related to physical aspects of the claim, and are driven by the level of harm the victim suffered, for example:
- Permanent disability.
- Painful treatment.
- Psychological damage.
- Stress and trauma.
- General pain and suffering.
Special damages relate to financial losses, and a documented proof will need to be supplied to back up this side of the claim. It’s possible to recover expenses such as:
- Lost future earnings.
- Lost salary/wages.
- Private medical fees.
- Out pocket expenses.
- Care costs.
We have created the table below to give you a rough guide to the level of compensation you could win. We have based it on the Judicial College Guidelines that are used by the legal system to value claims.
Injury Severity Notes Compensation
Ankle Modest In this category, there would be injuries like fractures that are minor in nature, such as hairline or undisplaced fractures. Recovery should be almost complete, but there may be a tendency for the ankle to give way when weight or stress is put on it. There could be some visible scarring, and there may be long-term aching of the ankle. Up to £12,900
Foot Modest In this category, there would be injuries like torn ligaments and tendons, puncture wounds, crush injuries, lacerations, etc. There could be minor ongoing symptoms such as an aching foot, slight limp, etc. Up to £12,900
Jaw fracture Simple In this category, there would be injuries like a simple fracture of the jaw. The jaw may need to be held immobile while the injury heals, but once it has there will be no further symptoms and recovery will be total. £6,060 to £8,200
Neck Minor In this category, there would be injuries to the neck like sprains, strains and other soft-tissue injuries such as torn ligaments. Also, all cuts, lacerations, etc. that would heal swiftly and completely. Up to £7,410
Back Minor In this category, there would be injuries to the back like sprains, strains and other soft-tissue injuries such as torn ligaments. Also, all cuts, lacerations, etc. that would heal swiftly and completely. Up to £11,730
Injured head/brain Minor In this category, there would be injuries to the head that would not cause any lasting brain damage. For example, a concussion that will only last a short time, and recovery will be complete. £2,070 to £11,980
Pelvis and hips Lesser In this category, there would be injuries that were possibly initially quite severe, but after recovery, the victim will not suffer any form of long-term or permanent impairment. This recovery would be made within two years. Up to £11,820
You might also be able to find a tool similar to a personal injury claims calculator to get a rough estimate of how much you could receive in compensation as a result of your clinical negligence claim. However, such tools are vague. If you would like a more accurate valuation of your claim, call us today for a free valuation.
No Win No Fee Claims For Negligent First Aid Treatment
Using a No Win No Fee solicitor means you are getting the legal help you need and reducing the financial risk of claiming. Under a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA) like this, you don’t pay a new claim fee or ongoing fees while the claim is processed. You also don’t pay the solicitors fee if the claim fails.
You might be asked to pay a small, legally capped success fee if the claim is a success though. Speak to a member of our claims team who can explain more about why this success fee is levied, and how it can be taken directly from any compensation received by the solicitor for you. So, you can see, you really have nothing to lose and everything to gain, as you don’t pay until such time as a settlement has been received by your solicitor.
Contact Us To Begin A Claim
Have you been harmed by negligence on the part of a person who was providing you with first aid? If so, you can contact us on 0800 652 3087 and speak to one of our expert claim advisors. They can let you know whether you might have a valid claim, and assist you with some free legal advice on what to do next.
Helpful First Aid Resources
These external pages have more information you might find valuable:
These other guides we have published may also be of some use to you:
Guide by Mac
Edited by Ed