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Updated: May 2020

Personal injury compensation is made up of a number of components which are all added together to reach a total figure.  There are many things that are included but the main ones are:

  • Compensation for physical injuries – typically between £2000 for an injury that resolves within a year, to hundreds of thousands of pounds for lifechanging injuries such as substantial amputation injury, paralysis and suchlike.
  • Compensation for psychological injuries – these can range from £2000 for temporary psychological injuries to around £70,000 for serious injury such as debilitating Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, very severe permanent depression and similar.
  • Compensation for lost earnings, both past and future.  With this we really are in a “how long is a piece of string?” situation.  Whilst someone who earns £20,000 who cannot work for six months will have a claim for £10,000, someone who earns £100,000 a year who is left unable to work for the remainder of their life may have a claim for millions of pounds. Insurance companies and their solicitors often try to dispute future loss of earnings claim and so it is important to retain a specialist litigation solicitor who will ensure these losses are recovered.
  • Compensation for medical expenses.  An often unknown rule is that people who are injured are entitled to recover the costs of medical treatment they need due to their injuries and the fact they could get this treatment on the NHS is not relevant.  This is a very important point: whilst there may be only modest medical expenses for a minor back injury, such as physiotherapy costs of £500, in a permanent injury claim future medical expenses can amount to hundreds of thousands of pounds.
  • Compensation for changes that will be needed to help people adapt to their injuries.  For example, someone who suffers a permanent hand injury might require specialist kitchen items to help them cook; someone who suffers a severe paralysing injury may need specialist accommodation or adaptations to their accommodation, the costs of which can run to hundreds of thousands of pounds.
  • Compensation for care and assistance.  This compensation is for the time others spend looking after and caring for someone due to their injuries.  It encompasses a wide range of assistance, from doing someone’s share of the chores for a few weeks, to lifelong nursing-type care.  Again, we are back in the “piece of string” territory but, as a rough guide, a rate of around £8.00 per hour is applied these days.  Claims for future care and assistance can last throughout a person’s life so these claims can become high value; for example, 1 hour of care and assistance per day at £8.00 works out as £58,400 over 20 years.

Aston Knight Solicitors case examples:

Whilst every case is different, the following examples from our own case success portfolio can give some idea:

£240,000 for partial finger amputation.  A factory worker’s index finger was severed in unguarded machinery.  The settlement reflected there would be long-term pain and impingement upon capacity for work.

£120,000 for knee injury.  A hospitality worker was thrown to the floor by another colleague, causing her to suffer a serious knee injury, requiring surgery.

£350,000 for serious leg injury at work.  An Eastern European factory worker suffered a serious injury to his leg in a forklift truck collision.  The settlement reflected there would be long-term pain in his leg and that his options for future work would be reduced.

£149,000 for psychological injuries.  A mother lost her baby daughter due to clinical negligence on the part of a hospital, resulting in substantial psychological injuries.  The settlement reflected the fact there would be permanent psychological injury and a need for future help.

£70,000 for construction site accident.  An industrial forklift driver suffered a back injury when he was forced to crush down skips.  He was left with ongoing back pain and had suffered lost earnings.

Below is an extract from the current court guidelines for orthopaedic injuries:

Neck Injuries
(a) Severe
(i) Neck injury associated with incomplete paraplegia or resulting in permanent spastic quadriparesis or where the injured person, despite wearing a collar 24 hours a day for a period of years, still has little or no movement in the neck and suffers severe headaches which have proved intractable.In the region of £139,210
(ii) Injuries, usually involving serious fractures or damage to discs in the cervical spine, which give rise to disabilities which fall short of those in (a)(i) above but which are of considerable severity; for example, permanent damage to the brachial plexus or substantial loss of movement in the neck and loss of function in one or more limbs.£61,710 to £122,860
(iii) Injuries causing fractures or dislocations or severe damage to soft tissues and/or ruptured tendons that lead to chronic conditions and significant disability of a permanent nature. The precise award depends on the length of time during which the most serious symptoms are ameliorated, the extent of the treatment required, and on the prognosis.£42,680 to £52,540
(b) Moderate
(i) Injuries such as fractures or dislocations which cause severe immediate symptoms and which may necessitate spinal fusion. This bracket will also include chronic conditions, usually involving referred symptoms to other parts of the anatomy or serious soft tissue injuries to the neck and back combined. They leave markedly impaired function or vulnerability to further trauma, and limitation of activities. Depending on severity of injury this bracket can include cases where there are pre-existing degenerative changes or where symptoms have been accelerated.£23,460 to £36,120
(ii) Cases involving soft tissue or wrenching-type injury and disc lesion of the more severe type resulting in cervical spondylosis, serious limitation of movement, permanent or recurring pain, stiffness or discomfort, and the possible need for further surgery or increased vulnerability to further trauma. This bracket will also include injuries which may have accelerated and/or exacerbated a pre-existing condition over a prolonged period of time, usually by five years or more.£12,900 to £23,460
(iii) Injuries which may have accelerated and/or exacerbated a pre-existing condition over a shorter period of time, usually less than five years. This bracket will also apply to moderate soft tissue injuries where the period of recovery has been fairly protracted and where there remains an increased vulnerability to further trauma or permanent nuisance type symptoms referring from the neck.
£7,410 to £12,900
(c) Minor
This bracket includes minor soft tissue injuries. Whilst the duration of symptoms will always be important, factors such as those listed below may justify an award in either a higher or lower bracket.
- the severity of the neck injury;
- the intensity of pain experienced and the consistency of symptoms;
- the extent to which ongoing symptoms are of a minor nature only;
- the presence of additional symptoms in the back and/or shoulder and/or referred headaches;
- the impact of the symptoms on the injured person’s ability to function in everyday life and engage in social/recreational activities;
- the impact of the injuries on the injured person’s ability to work;
- the extent of any treatment required;
- the need to take medication to control symptoms of pain and discomfort.
(i) Where a full recovery takes place within a period of about one to two years. This bracket will also apply to short-term acceleration and/or exacerbation injuries, usually between one to two years.£4,080 to £7,410
(ii) Where a full recovery takes place between three months and a year. This bracket will also apply to very short-term acceleration and/or exacerbation injuries, usually less than one year.£2,300 to £4,080
(iii) Where a full recovery is made within three months.Up to £2,300
Back Injuries
(a) Severe
(i) Cases of the most severe injury involving damage to the spinal cord and nerve roots, leading to a combination of very serious consequences not normally found in cases of back injury. There will be severe pain and disability with a combination of incomplete paralysis and significantly impaired bladder, bowel, and sexual function.£85,470 to £151,070
(ii) Cases which have special features taking them outside any lower bracket applicable to orthopaedic injury to the back. Such features include nerve root damage with associated loss of sensation, impaired mobility, impaired bladder and bowel function, sexual difficulties, and unsightly scarring.£69,600 to £82,980
(iii) Cases of disc lesions or fractures of discs or of vertebral bodies or soft tissue injuries leading to chronic conditions where, despite treatment (usually involving surgery), there remain disabilities such as continuing severe pain and discomfort, impaired agility, impaired sexual function, depression, personality change, alcoholism, unemployability, and the risk of arthritis.£36,390 to £65,440
(b) Moderate
(i) Cases where any residual disability is of less severity than that in (a)(iii) above. The bracket contains a wide variety of injuries. Examples are a case of a compression/crush fracture of the lumbar vertebrae where there is a substantial risk of osteoarthritis and constant pain and discomfort; that of a traumatic spondylolisthesis with continuous pain and a probability that spinal fusion will be necessary; a prolapsed intervertebral disc requiring surgery; or damage to an intervertebral disc with nerve root irritation and reduced mobility.£26,050 to £36,390
(ii) Many frequently encountered injuries to the back such as disturbance of ligaments and muscles giving rise to backache, soft tissue injuries resulting in a prolonged acceleration and/or exacerbation of a pre-existing back condition, usually by five years or more, or prolapsed discs necessitating laminectomy or resulting in repeated relapses. The precise figure will depend upon a number of factors including the severity of the original injury, the degree of pain experienced, the extent of any treatment required in the past or in the future, the impact of the symptoms on the injured person’s ability to function in everyday life and engage in social/recreational activities and the prognosis for the future.
£11,730 to £26,050
(c) Minor
This bracket includes less serious strains, sprains, disc prolapses, soft tissue injuries, or fracture injuries with recover without surgery. As with minor neck injuries, whilst the duration of symptoms will always be important, factors such as those listed below may justify an award in either a higher or lower bracket.
- the severity of the original injury;
- the degree of pain experienced and the consistency of symptoms;
- the extent to which ongoing symptoms are of a minor nature only;
- the presence of any additional symptoms in other parts of the anatomy, particularly the neck;
- the impact of the symptoms on the injured person’s ability to function in everyday life and engage in social/recreational activities;
- the impact of the injuries on the injured person’s ability to work;
- the extent of any treatment required;
- the need to take medication to control symptoms of pain and discomfort.
(i) Where a full recovery or a recovery to nuisance level takes place without surgery within about two to five years. This bracket will also apply to shorter term acceleration and/or exacerbation injuries, usually between two to five years.£7,410 to £11,730
(ii) Where a full recovery takes place without surgery between three months and two years. This bracket will also apply to very short-term acceleration and/or exacerbation injuries, usually less than two years.£2,300 to £7,410
(iii) Where a full recovery is made within three months.Up to £2,300
Shoulder Injuries
(a) Severe
Often associated with neck injuries and involving damage to the brachial plexus (see (A)(a)(ii)) resulting in significant disability. Serious brachial plexus injuries causing significant neck and/or arm symptoms should be assessed under brackets (A)(a)(ii) or (F)(a).£18,020 to £45,070
(b) Serious
Dislocation of the shoulder and damage to the lower part of the brachial plexus causing pain in shoulder and neck, aching in elbow, sensory symptoms in the forearm and hand, and weakness of grip or a fractured humerus leading to restricted shoulder movement. Cases of rotator cuff injury with persisting symptoms after surgery will usually fall within this bracket, as will cases of soft tissue injury where intrusive symptoms will be permanent.£11,980 to £18,020
(c) Moderate
Frozen shoulder with limitation of movement and discomfort with symptoms persisting for about two years. Also soft tissue injuries with more than minimal symptoms persisting after two years but not permanent.£7,410 to £11,980
(d) Minor
Soft tissue injury to shoulder with considerable pain but almost complete recovery:
The starting point for the assessment will be the duration of symptoms but the severity of the original injury, the degree of pain experienced, and the extent to which ongoing symptoms are of a minor nature only may justify an award in a higher or lower bracket.
(i) in less than two years;£4,080 to £7,410
(ii) within a year;£2,300 to £4,080
(iii) within three months.Up to £2,300
(e) Fracture of Clavicle
The level of the award will depend on extent of fracture, level of disability, residual symptoms, and whether temporary or permanent, and whether union is anatomically displaced. Unusually serious cases may exceed this bracket and regard may be had to bracket (C)(b) above.
Injuries to the Pelvis and Hips
The most serious of injuries to the pelvis and hip can be as devastating as a leg amputation and accordingly will attract a similar award of damages.
£4,830 to £11,490
(a) Severe
(i) Extensive fractures of the pelvis involving, for example, dislocation of a low back joint and a ruptured bladder, or a hip injury resulting in spondylolisthesis of a low back joint with intolerable pain and necessitating spinal fusion. Inevitably there will be substantial residual disabilities such as a complicated arthrodesis with resulting lack of bladder and bowel control, sexual dysfunction, or hip deformity making the use of a calliper essential; or may present difficulties for natural delivery.£73,580 to £122,860
(ii) Injuries only a little less severe than in (a)(i) above but with particular distinguishing features lifting them above any lower bracket. Examples are: (a) fracture dislocation of the pelvis involving both ischial and pubic rami and resulting in impotence; or (b) traumatic myositis ossificans with formation of ectopic bone around the hip.£58,100 to £73,580
(iii) Many injuries fall within this bracket: a fracture of the acetabulum leading to degenerative changes and leg instability requiring an osteotomy and the likelihood of hip replacement surgery in the future; the fracture of an arthritic femur or hip necessitating hip replacement; or a fracture resulting in a hip replacement which is only partially successful so that there is a clear risk of the need for revision surgery.£36,770 to £49,270
(b) Moderate
(i) Significant injury to the pelvis or hip but any permanent disability is not major and any future risk not great.£24,950 to £36,770
(ii) These cases may involve hip replacement or other surgery. Where it has been carried out wholly successfully the award will tend to the top of the bracket, but the bracket also includes cases where hip replacement may be necessary in the foreseeable future or where there are more than minimal ongoing symptoms.£11,820 to £24,950
(c) Lesser Injuries
(i) Cases where despite significant injury there is little or no residual disability. Where there has been a complete recovery within two years, the award may but is unlikely to exceed the mid-point in the range.£3,710 to £11,820
(ii) Minor soft tissue injuries with complete recovery.
Amputation of Arms
The value of any amputation injury depends upon:
whether the amputation is above or below the elbow. The loss of the additional joint adds greatly to the disability;
The extent to which prosthetics can restore function;
whether or not the amputation was of the dominant arm;
the intensity of any phantom pains;
the claimant’s age;
the effect on work, domestic, and social life.
Up to £3,710
(a) Loss of Both Arms
The effect of such an injury is to reduce a person with full awareness to a state of considerable helplessness.
£225,960 to £281,520
(b) Loss of One Arm
(i) Arm Amputated at the ShoulderNot less than £128,710
(ii) Above-elbow Amputation
A shorter stump may create difficulties in the use of a prosthesis. This will make the level of the award towards the top end of the bracket. Amputation through the elbow will normally produce an award at the bottom end of the bracket.
£102,890 to £122,860
(iii) Below-elbow Amputation
Amputation through the forearm with residual severe organic and phantom pains would attract an award at the top end of the bracket.
£90,250 to £102,890
Other Arm Injuries
(a) Severe Injuries
Injuries which fall short of amputation but which are extremely serious and leave the injured person little better off than if the arm had been lost; for example, a serious brachial plexus injury.
£90,250 to £122,860
(b) Injuries Resulting in Permanent and Substantial Disablement
Serious fractures of one or both forearms where there is significant permanent residual disability whether functional or cosmetic.
£36,770 to £56,180
(c) Less Severe Injury
While there will have been significant disabilities, a substantial degree of recovery will have taken place or will be expected.
£18,020 to £36,770
(d) Simple Fractures of the Forearm£6,190 to £18,020
Injuries to the Elbow
(a) A Severely Disabling Injury£36,770 to £51,460
(b) Less Severe Injuries
Injuries causing impairment of function but not involving major surgery or significant disability.
£14,690 to £30,050
(c) Moderate or Minor Injury
Most elbow injuries fall into this category. They comprise simple fractures, tennis elbow syndrome, and lacerations; i.e., those injuries which cause no permanent damage and do not result in any permanent impairment of function.
Injuries fully resolving after about one year will usually attract an award in the region of £3,010 ( £3,310 accounting for 10% uplift).
Injuries with the majority of symptoms resolving within 18 to 24 months but with nuisance level symptoms persisting after that would attract an award of £5,360 ( £5,890 accounting for 10% uplift).
Injuries recovering after three years with nuisance symptoms thereafter and/or requiring surgery will attract awards towards the top of the bracket.
Up to £11,820
Wrist Injuries
(a) Injuries resulting in complete loss of function in the wrist for example, where an arthrodesis has been performed.£44,690 to £56,180
(b) Injury resulting in significant permanent disability, but where some useful movement remains.£22,990 to £36,770
(c) Less severe injuries where these still result in some permanent disability as, for example, a degree of persisting pain and stiffness.£11,820 to £22,990
Where recovery from fracture or soft tissue injury takes longer but is complete, the award will rarely exceed £8,740 ( £9,620 with 10% uplift).
Rarely exceed £9,620
(e) An uncomplicated Colles' fracture.In the region of £6,970
(f) Very minor undisplaced or minimally displaced fractures and soft tissue injuries necessitating application of plaster or bandage for a matter of weeks and a full or virtual recovery within up to 12 months or so.£3,310 to £4,450
Hand Injuries
The hands are cosmetically and functionally the most important component parts of the upper limbs. The loss of a hand is valued not far short of the amount which would be awarded for the loss of the arm itself. The upper end of any bracket will generally be appropriate where the injury is to the dominant hand.

In cases of injuries to multiple digits, practitioners and judges should not simply add the figures which would be appropriate for each injury separately, but should consider the overall extent of pain, suffering, and loss of amenity, usually leading to a lower award than would be appropriate by simple addition.
(a) Total or Effective Loss of Both Hands
Serious injury resulting in extensive damage to both hands such as to render them little more than useless. The top of the bracket is applicable where no effective prosthesis can be used.
£132,040 to £189,110
(b) Serious Damage to Both Hands
Such injuries will have given rise to permanent cosmetic disability and significant loss of function.
£52,310 to £79,360
(c) Total or Effective Loss of One Hand
This bracket will apply to a hand which was crushed and thereafter surgically amputated or where all fingers and most of the palm have been traumatically amputated. The upper end of the bracket is indicated where the hand so damaged was the dominant one.
£90,250 to £102,890
(d) Amputation of Index and Middle and/or Ring Fingers
The hand will have been rendered of very little use and such grip as remains will be exceedingly weak.
£58,100 to £85,170
(e) Serious Hand Injuries
Such injuries will, for example, have reduced the hand to about 50 per cent capacity. Included would be cases where several fingers have been amputated but rejoined to the hand leaving it clawed, clumsy, and unsightly, or amputation of some fingers together with part of the palm resulting in gross diminution of grip and dexterity and gross cosmetic disfigurement.
£27,220 to £58,100
(f) Severe Fractures to Fingers
These may lead to partial amputations and result in deformity, impairment of grip, reducued mechanical function, and disturbed sensation.
Up to £34,480
(g) Less Serious Hand Injury
Such as a severe crush injury resulting in significantly impaired function without future surgery or despite operative treatment undergone.
£13,570 to £27,220
(h) Moderate Hand Injury
Crush injuries, penetrating wounds, soft tissue type and deep lacerations. The top of the bracket would be appropriate where surgery has failed and permanent disability remains. The bottom of the bracket would be appropriate for permanent but non-intrusive symptoms.
£5,260 to £12,460
(i) Total and Partial Loss of Index Finger
Total loss will likely result in an award at the top end of the bracket.
This bracket also covers cases of injury to the index finger giving rise to disfigurement and impairment of grip or dexterity.
£11,420 to £17,590
(j) Fracture of Index Finger
This level is appropriate where a fracture has mended quickly but grip has remained impaired, there is pain on heavy use, and osteoarthritis is likely in due course.
£8,550 to £11,480
(k) Serious Injury to Ring or Middle Fingers
Fractures or serious injury to tendons causing stiffness, deformity, and permanent loss of grip or dexterity will fall within this bracket. This bracket will include awards for total loss of middle finger.
£13,970 to £15,330
(l) Loss of the Terminal Phalanx of the Ring or Middle Fingers£3,710 to £7,390
(m) Amputation of Little Finger£8,110 to £11,490
(n) Loss of Part of the Little Finger
This is appropriate where the remaining tip is sensitive.
£3,710 to £5,500
(0) Amputation of Ring and Little FingersIn the region of £20,480
(p) Amputation of the Terminal Phalanges of the Index and Middle Fingers
Such injury will involve scarring, restriction of movement, and impairment of grip and fine handling.
In the region of £23,460
(q) Loss of Thumb£33,330 to £51,460
(r) Very Serious Injury to Thumb
This bracket is appropriate where the thumb has been severed at the base and grafted back leaving a virtually useless and deformed digit, or where the thumb has been amputated through the interphalangeal joint.
£18,390 to £32,850
(s) Serious Injury to the Thumb
Such injuries may involve amputation of the tip, nerve damage or fracture necessitating the insertion of wires as a result of which the thumb is cold and ultra-sensitive and there is impaired grip and loss of manual dexterity.
£11,820 to £15,740
(t) Moderate Injuries to the Thumb
These are injuries such as those necessitating arthrodesis of the interphalangeal joint or causing damage to tendons or nerves. Such injuries result in impairment of sensation and function and cosmetic deformity.
£9,080 to £11,820
(u) Severe Dislocation of the Thumb£3,710 to £6,360
(v) Minor Hand, Finger and Thumb Injuries
This will include fractures which generally have recovered in six months. Also injuries such as scarring, tenderness, and reaction to the cold where there is full recovery.
Up to £4,461
Vibration White Finger (VWF) and/or Hand-Arm Vibration Syndrome (HAVS)
(a) Most Serious
Persisting bilateral symptoms in a younger person which interfere significantly with daily life and lead to a change in employment.
£26,990 to £32,780 / £29,690 to £36,060
(b) Serious
In this bracket there will have been a marked interference with work and domestic activity. Attacks may occur throughout the year.
£14,310 to £26,990 / £15,740 to £29,690
(c) Moderate
This bracket will include claimants in their middle years where employment has been maintained or varied only to remove excess vibration. Attacks will occur mostly in cold weather.
£7,380 to £14,310 / £8,110 to £15,740
(d) Minor
Occasional symptoms in only a few fingers with a modest effect on work or leisure.
£2,560 to £7,380 / £2,810 to £8,110
Work-Related Upper Limb Disorders
This section covers a range of upper limb injury in the form of the following pathological conditions:
Tenosynovitis: inflammation of synovial sheaths of tendons usually resolving with rest over a short period. Sometimes this condition leads to continuing symptoms of loss of grip and dexterity.
De Quervain's tenosynovitis: a form of tenosynovitis, rarely bilateral, involving inflammation of the tendons of the thumb.
Stenosing tenosynovitis: otherwise, trigger finger/thumb: thickening tendons.
Carpal tunnel syndrome: constriction of the median nerve of the wrist or thickening of surrounding tissue. It is often relieved by a decompression operation.
Epicondylitis: inflammation in the elbow joint: medial = golfer's elbow; lateral = tennis elbow. The brackets below apply to all these conditions but the level of the award is affected by the following considerations regardless of the precise condition:
are the effects bilateral or one sided (and, if one-sided, whether it is the dominant hand)?
the level of symptoms, i.e., pain, swelling, tenderness, crepitus;
the ability to work and the effect on domestic and social life;
the capacity to avoid the recurrence of symptoms;
which, if any, of the symptoms would have been suffered in any event and when.
(a) Continuing bilateral disability with surgery and loss of employment.£20,560 to £21,700
(b) Continuing, but fluctuating and unilateral symptoms.£13,970 to £15,330
(c) Symptoms resolving in the course of up to three years.£8,110 to £10,090
(d) Complete recovery within a short period (of weeks or a few months).£2,070 to £3,310
Leg Injuries
(a) Amputations
(i) Loss of Both Legs
This is the appropriate award where both legs are lost above the knee or one leg has been lost above the knee at a high level and the other leg has been lost below the knee. The level of award will be determined by factors such as the severity of any phantom pains; associated psychological problems; the success of any prosthetics; any side effects such as backache; and the risk of future degenerative changes in the hips and spine.
£225,960 to £264,650
(ii) Below-knee Amputation of Both Legs
The level of the amputations will be important, with an award at the top of the bracket appropriate where both legs are amputated just below the knee. Otherwise, the award will depend upon factors such as the severity of any phantom pains; associated psychological problems; the success of any prosthetics; any side effects such as backache; and the risk of developing degenerative changes in the remaining joints of both lower limbs or in the hips and spine.
£189,110 to £253,480
(iii) Above-knee Amputation of One Leg
The award will depend upon such factors as the level of the amputation; the severity of any phantom pains; associated psychological problems; the success of any prosthetics; any side effects such as backache; and the risk of developing osteoarthritis in the remaining joints of both lower limbs or in the hips and spine.
£98,380 to £129,010
(iv) Below-knee Amputation of One Leg
The straightforward case of a below-knee amputation with no complications would justify an award towards the bottom of this bracket. At or towards the top of the range would come the traumatic amputation which occurs in a devastating accident, where the injured person remained fully conscious, or cases where attempts to save the leg led to numerous unsuccessful operations so that amputation occurred years after the event. Factors such as phantom pains, the success of any prosthetics, associated psychological problems, and the increased chance of developing osteoarthritis in the remaining joints of both limbs will also be important in determining the appropriate award.
£91,950 to £124,800
(b) Severe Leg Injuries
(i) The Most Serious Injuries Short of Amputation
Some injuries, although not involving amputation, are so severe that the courts have awarded damages at a similar level. Such injuries would include extensive degloving of the leg, where there is gross shortening of the leg, or where fractures have not united and extensive bone grafting has been undertaken.
£90,320 to £127,530
(ii) Very Serious
Injuries leading to permanent problems with mobility, the need for crutches or mobility aids for the remainder of the injured person’s life; injuries where multiple fractures have taken years to heal, required extensive treatment, and have led to serious deformity and limitation of movement, or where arthritis has developed in a joint so that further surgical treatment is likely.
£51,460 to £85,600
(iii) Serious
Serious compound or comminuted fractures or injuries to joints or ligaments resulting in instability, prolonged treatment, a lengthy period of non-weight-bearing, the near certainty that arthritis will ensue; extensive scarring. To justify an award within this bracket a combination of such features will generally be necessary.
£36,790 to £51,460
(iv) Moderate
This bracket includes complicated or multiple fractures or severe crushing injuries, generally to a single limb. The level of an award within the bracket will be influenced by the extent of treatment undertaken; impact on employment; the presence or risk of degenerative changes and/or future surgery; imperfect union of fractures, muscle wasting; limited joint movements; instability in the knee; unsightly scarring; or permanently increased vulnerability to future damage.
£26,050 to £36,790
(c) Less Serious Leg Injuries
(i) Fractures from which an Incomplete Recovery is Made or Serious Soft Tissue Injuries
In the case of fracture injuries, the injured person will have made a reasonable recovery but will be left with a metal implant and/or defective gait, a limp, impaired mobility, sensory loss, discomfort or an exacerbation of a pre-existing disability. This bracket will also involve serious soft tissue injuries to one or both legs causing significant cosmetic deficit, functional restriction and/or some nerve damage in the lower limbs.
£16,860 to £26,050
(ii) Simple Fracture of a Femur with No Damage to Articular Surfaces£8,550 to £13,210
(iii) Simple Fractures to Tibia or Fibula or Soft Tissue Injuries
Towards the top of the bracket there will come simple fractures of the tibia or fibula where there are some ongoing minor symptoms such as dull aching and/or modest restriction of movement. Where there has been a simple fracture of the tibia or fibula with a complete recovery, an award of less than £7,770 ( £8,550 accounting for 10% uplift) is likely to be justified. The level of award will be influenced by time spent in plaster and the length of the recovery period. Below this level fall a wide variety of soft tissue injuries, lacerations, cuts, bruising, or contusions, all of which have recovered completely or almost so and any residual disability is cosmetic or of a minor nature. Where these modest injuries have fully resolved within a few months an award of less than £2,090 ( £2,300 accounting for 10% uplift) is likely to be justified.
Up to £11,110
Knee Injuries
(a) Severe
(i) Serious knee injury where there has been disruption of the joint, the development of osteoarthritis, gross ligamentous damage, lengthy treatment, considerable pain and loss of function, and an arthroplasty or arthrodesis has taken place or is inevitable.£65,440 to £90,290
(ii) Leg fracture extending into the knee joint causing pain which is constant, permanent, limiting movement or impairing agility, and rendering the injured person prone to osteoarthritis and at the risk of arthroplasty.£48,920 to £65,440
(iii) Less severe injuries than those in (a)(ii) above and/or injuries which result in less severe disability. There may be continuing symptoms by way of pain and discomfort and limitation of movement or instability or deformity with the risk that degenerative changes and the need for remedial surgery may occur in the long term as a result of damage to the kneecap, ligamentous or meniscal injury, or muscular wasting.£24,580 to £40,770
(b) Moderate
(i) Injuries involving dislocation, torn cartilage or meniscus which results in minor instability, wasting, weakness, or other mild future disability. This bracket also includes injuries which accelerate symptoms from a pre-existing condition over a prolonged period of years.£13,920 to £24,580
(ii) This bracket includes injuries similar to those in (b)(i) above, but less serious and involving shorter periods of acceleration, and also lacerations, twisting, or bruising injuries. Where there is continuous aching or discomfort, or occasional pain, the award will be towards the upper end of the bracket. Where recovery has been complete or almost complete the award is unlikely to exceed £5,160 (£5,680 accounting for 10% uplift). Modest injuries that resolve within a short space of time will attract lower awards.Up to £12,900
Ankle Injuries
(a) Very Severe
Examples of injuries falling within this bracket are limited and unusual. They include cases of a transmalleolar fracture of the ankle with extensive soft-tissue damage resulting in deformity and the risk that any future injury to the leg might necessitate a below-knee amputation, or cases of bilateral ankle fractures causing degeneration of the joints at a young age so that arthrodesis is necessary.
£46,980 to £65,420
(b) Severe
Injuries necessitating an extensive period of treatment and/or a lengthy period in plaster or where pins and plates have been inserted and there is significant residual disability in the form of ankle instability and severely limited ability to walk. The level of the award within the bracket will be determined in part by such features as a failed arthrodesis, the presence of or risk of osteoarthritis, regular sleep disturbance, unsightly scarring, impact on employment, and any need to wear special footwear.
£29,380 to £46,980
(c) Moderate
Fractures, ligamentous tears and the like which give rise to less serious disabilities such as difficulty in walking on uneven ground, difficulty standing or walking for long periods of time, awkwardness on stairs, irritation from metal plates, and residual scarring There may also be a risk of future osteoarthritis.
£12,900 to £24,950
(d) Modest Injuries
The less serious, minor or undisplaced fractures, sprains, and ligamentous injuries. The level of the award within the bracket will be determined by whether or not a complete recovery has been made and, if recovery is incomplete, whether there is any tendency for the ankle to give way, and whether there is scarring, aching or discomfort, loss of movement, or the possibility of long term osteoarthritis.
Where recovery is complete without any ongoing symptoms or scarring, the award is unlikely to exceed £6,560 ( £7,220 accounting for 10% uplift). Where recovery is complete within a year, the award is unlikely to exceed £4,690 ( £5,160 accounting for 10% uplift). Modest injuries that resolve within a short space of time will attract lower awards.
Up to £12,900
Achilles Tendon
(a) Most Serious
Severance of the tendon and the peroneus longus muscle giving rise to cramp, swelling, and restricted ankle movement necessitating the cessation of active sports.
In the region of £36,060
(b) Serious
Where complete division of the tendon has been successfully repaired but there is residual weakness, a limitation of ankle movements, a limp, and residual scarring and where further improvement is unlikely.
£23,460 to £28,240
(c) Moderate
Cases involving partial rupture or significant injury to the tendon. The level of award within the bracket will be determined by the treatment received (whether conservative or invasive), the level of recovery made, ongoing pain, any continuing functional disability, and permanent scarring.
£11,820 to £19,770
(d) Minor
A turning of the ankle resulting in some damage to the tendon and a feeling of being unsure of ankle support would fall within this bracket. The consequences of these injuries may be similar to modest ankle injuries and further guidance may be obtained from bracket (N)(d).
£6,820 to £11,820
Foot Injuries
(a) Amputation of Both Feet
This injury is treated similarly to below-knee amputation of both legs because the common feature is loss of a useful ankle joint.
£158,970 to £189,110
(b) Amputation of One Foot
This injury is also treated as similar to a below-knee amputation because of the loss of the ankle joint.
£78,800 to £102,890
(c) Very Severe
To fall within this bracket the injury must produce permanent and severe pain or really serious permanent disability. Examples would include the traumatic amputation of the forefoot where there was a significant risk of the need for a full amputation and serious exacerbation of an existing back problem, or cases of the loss of a substantial portion of the heel so that mobility was grossly restricted.
£78,800 to £102,890
(d) Severe
Fractures of both heels or feet with a substantial restriction on mobility or considerable and permanent pain. The bracket will also include unusually severe injury to a single foot. Examples include injuries that result in severe degloving, extensive surgery, heel fusion, osteoporosis, ulceration, or other disability preventing the wearing of ordinary shoes. It will also apply in the case of a drop foot deformity corrected by a brace.
£39,390 to £65,710
(e) Serious
This bracket will include injuries less severe than in (d) above but leading to continuing pain from traumatic arthritis or the risk of future arthritis, prolonged treatment and the risk of fusion surgery.
£23,460 to £36,790
(f) Moderate
Displaced metatarsal fractures resulting in permanent deformity and continuing symptoms. There may be a risk of long-term osteoarthritis and/or future surgery.
£12,900 to £23,460
(g) Modest
Simple metatarsal fractures, ruptured ligaments, puncture wounds and the like. Where there are continuing symptoms, such as a permanent limp, pain, or aching, awards between £5,980 ( £6,580 accounting for 10% uplift) and £11,730 ( £12,900 accounting for 10% uplift) would be appropriate. Straightforward foot injuries such as fractures, lacerations, contusions etc. from which complete or near complete recovery is made would justify awards of £5,980 ( £6,580 accounting for 10% uplift) or less. Modest injuries that resolve within a short space of time will attract lower awards. Awards for minor foot injuries resolving within a few months, with little impact on lifestyle or day to day activities, are unlikely to exceed £2,090 ( £2,300 accounting for 10% uplift).
Up to £12,900
Toe Injuries
(a) Amputation of All Toes
The position within the bracket will be determined by, for example, whether or not the amputation was traumatic or surgical and the extent of the loss of the forefoot together with the residual effects on mobility.
£34,270 to £52,620
(b) Amputation of the Great ToeIn the region of £29,380
(c) Severe Toe Injuries
This is the appropriate bracket for severe crush injuries, leading to amputation of one or two toes (other than the great toe) or falling short of the need for amputation or necessitating only partial amputation. It also includes bursting wounds and injuries resulting in severe damage and in any event producing significant continuing symptoms.
£12,900 to £19,770
(d) Serious Toe Injuries
Such injuries will be serious injuries to the great toe or crush and multiple fractures of two or more toes. There will be some permanent disability by way of discomfort, pain, or sensitive scarring to justify an award within this bracket. Where there have been a number of unsuccessful operations or persisting stabbing pains, impaired gait or the like the award will tend towards the top end of the bracket.
£9,010 to £12,900
(e) Moderate Toe Injuries
These injuries include relatively straightforward fractures or the exacerbation of a pre-existing degenerative condition or laceration injuries to one or more toes. Cases involving prolonged minor symptoms and/or the need for surgery resulting in prolonged discomfort and permanent scarring are likely to justify awards towards the upper end of this bracket. Only £4,770 ( £5,250 accounting for 10% uplift) or less would be awarded for straightforward fractures or crushing/soft tissue injuries of one or more toes with complete resolution or near complete resolution. Modest injuries that resolve within a short space of time will attract lower awards.
Up to £9,010

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