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Every year in the UK more than three million people suffer injury in an accident. Whether it has occurred at home, on the road, in the workplace, or outdoors, if the accidents is the fault of another party – for example, an employer or a car driver – they may be liable for compensation to be paid to the injured person.A compensation claim can only be made by, or on behalf of, a person who has suffered a personal injury or illness that was the fault of another party – for example, an employer, road user or holiday tour operator.

In most personal injury compensation claims, the person making the claim is the person who suffered the injury. That person has what is known as 'title to sue'. He or she is also the person who will benefit from any compensation that is awarded. When making the claim for compensation, the injured person is known as the “claimant” or the “pursuer”.

Executors and litigation friends

There are some situations where the person who suffered the injury cannot make the claim. This may be because:

  • they have died – a fatal accident claim
  • they are too young – a child accident claim
  • they are mentally incapable – a loss of capacity claim.

In these cases, someone else can step in to act on the injured or deceased person's behalf - usually an Executor (in the case of a fatal injury) or a parent or trusted relative in the case of a child or adult with limited mental capacity; in the latter two cases the person acting on behalf of the claimant is known as the "litigation friend".

There are some cases where it will not be appropriate to have a parent act on behalf of the child – for example, if the child sustained injury in a car accident caused by the parent.

Whatever the case, any compensation awarded in these claims will still belong to the person who suffered the injury (or their estate). It will not belong to the person who made the claim on their behalf. If the person is under 18 or does not possess mental capacity to manage their own funds, a trust can be established to ensure their long-term interests are provided for by any settlement awarded.

Thompsons solicitors in Scotland

Thompsons is Scotland's leading personal injury firm and has many years of experience in helping families claim compensations for serious and life-changing injuries.

We look to ensure that every detail is considered, including education, accommodation, care, family arrangements, any pressing short-term financial needs and the long-term financial future including loss of future earnings.

If you or someone close to you has been injured call our personal injury lawyers for an immediate, no obligation, free legal consultation on 0800 0891 331.

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