Premature Hospital Discharge Claims Explained
By Danielle Jordan. Last Updated 22nd November 2023. Welcome to our guide on how to claim compensation for premature hospital discharge. Have you suffered an injury or illness because you have been discharged from the hospital too soon? If so, and it was a result of a medical professional failing to provide you with the correct level of care, there is a very high chance that you will be able to claim some compensation if this has caused your original condition to become worse. As a patient, you are owed a duty of care, and this means that the hospital staff need to make sure they take all reasonable steps to ensure you receive the correct care. Part of this means that you should only be discharged when ready.
If you have experienced an unsafe discharge from the hospital with a lack of health and social care, we could connect you with our solicitors who could help you get the compensation you deserve provided you have a valid claim. Here at Legal Expert, our solicitors all have experience in medical negligence claims, and they could help you take steps to get the compensation you deserve. For more information, you can reach us on the following details:
- Telephone: 0800 073 8804
- Online form: Fill out the online contact form with your query and an advisor will get back to you.
- Live chat: Speak with an advisor using the live chat function below.
But before you give us a call, read on to discover everything you need to know about premature hospital discharge claims.
Select A Section
- When Could You Claim Against A Hospital For Premature Discharge?
- Reasons For Being Discharged Too Early
- Proving You Were Discharged From Hospital Too Soon
- Compensation Amounts For Premature Hospital Discharges
- I Was Harmed By Being Discharged From Hospital Too Soon – How Long Do I Have To Claim
- Unsafe Hospital Discharge – No Win No Fee Legal Assistance
There are specific eligibility criteria that you must satisfy if you would like to claim compensation due to an unsafe discharge from hospital. Once a hospital agrees to provide you with treatment, they automatically owe you a duty of care. This means that the hospital and medical professionals responsible for your treatment must provide you with the correct standard of care. If they fail to do so, you could suffer unnecessary harm.
In order to make a medical negligence claim, you must have evidence that proves:
- You were owed a duty of care.
- The hospital or medical professionals working there breached this duty.
- You suffered harm that could have been avoided as a result.
One of the advisors from our team can discuss the circumstances behind your premature hospital discharge and help evaluate whether you might be eligible to seek compensation.
Potential issues that may lead a patient to be released from hospital too early could include mistakes in reading a medical report, inaccuracies in medication and treatment, failing to carry out the right tests or misdiagnosis. Have you been harmed due to a premature discharge from hospital? If so, you will have a strong case if you can show that the defendant, i.e. the facility or doctor, did the following as a result of failing to meet the correct level of care:
- Did not ensure medical stability
- Failure to conduct the correct testing before the discharge
- Did not properly treat or diagnose the issue
- Failure to schedule a necessary follow-up appointment
Your medical negligence claim will need to be supported with sufficient evidence. It could help prove that the hospital breached their duty of care and caused you unnecessary harm as a result.
Here are a few examples of evidence that could be useful when proving you suffered unnecessarily due to an unsafe discharge from the hospital:
- Contact information from any witnesses. For example, if a friend or family member were with you during the premature hospital discharge.
- A copy of your medical records. These can help illustrate how your condition was impacted by being released from the hospital too soon.
- Test results. These could include X-rays, scans and blood tests. They could show the extent of your initial condition or the harm you suffered when you were discharged too early.
Additionally, your case may be subject to the Bolam test. This is when a panel of experts trained in the relevant field will assess the actions of the professional who discharged you and judge whether or not that was negligence.
If you have any questions about what evidence could be submitted for your case, get in touch with an advisor from our team.
Those eligible to make a medical negligence claim for the harm they have suffered due to an unsafe discharge from a hospital could receive general and special damages in their settlement.
General damages compensate you for the harm you have experienced due to an unsafe hospital discharge. When legal professionals are valuing this head of claim, they may refer to the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG) for help. This document provides compensation guidelines for various types of harm. We have included some of the figures listed in the 16th edition of the JCG in the table below. However, please note the top entry is not taken from the JCG.
This table should be used as a guide only.
|The type of injury you have sustained:||Some extra notes:||The average payout amount for the injury you have sustained:|
|Multiple serious illnesses or injuries||Your settlement may include compensation for incurred expenses such as home adaptations and lost income as well as your pain and suffering.||Up to £500,000|
|Full Arm Amputation||Loss of the arm at the shoulder.||Not less than £137,160|
|Below Elbow Amputation||Loss of the lower arm.||£96,160 to £109,650|
|Loss of One Hand||Either through amputation, or permanent loss of function.||£96,160 to £109,650|
|Severe Back Injuries (ii)||Such as breaks to the back, which will have a permanent affect on the life of the victim.||£74,160 to £88,430|
|Moderate Back Injuries (ii)||Damage to the muscles and ligaments of the back.||£12,510 to £27,760|
|Minor Back Injuries (i)||Sprains, lacerations and bruising, which will heal rapidly and have no lasting affect.||£7,890 to £12,510|
|Less Severe Head Injuries||The impact on your sleep and daily activities are considered.||£15,320 to £43,060|
|Minor Leg Injuries (C) (iii)||Soft tissue damage, sprains and very minor fractures.||Up to £11,840|
Special damages may also be included in a medical negligence claim to cover for the financial losses or expenses you have experienced due to the medical negligence.
Some examples of the losses you could be compensated for under this head of claim include:
- A loss of earnings.
- Essential travel expenses.
- Care costs.
- Medical expenses.
Providing evidence of these expenses and losses could help support your claim for special damages, e.g. bank statements, invoices and payslips.
For a free valuation of your potential medical negligence claim, you can contact our advisors.
If you suffered harm because you were discharged from the hospital too soon, you will generally have three years to start a claim. This can either be:
- Three years from the date of your early discharge,
- Three years from the date you were first made aware of the medical harm caused
However, there are exceptions in place to the time limit in some instances.
People who lack the mental capacity to make a claim can have their time limit suspended or can be represented by a litigation friend. For example, if someone elderly was discharged from the hospital too soon, and they suffered from Alzheimer’s, they may not be able to represent themselves in civil proceedings. If a claimant regains the capacity to represent themselves, then their time limit will begin on the date this occurs.
If the claimant was under the age of 18 at the time of the negligent discharge, then their 3-year time limit would begin on the date of their 18th birthday. Alternatively, a litigation friend can be used before this time.
Please reach out to one of our team for any help you may need with your claim.
If you have suffered harm from an unsafe hospital discharge, you may be concerned about the costs of hiring a solicitor upfront if you’re eligible to claim. However, you could enlist their help under a No Win No Fee agreement.
The arrangement generally means:
- No surprise fees or hidden costs as you’ll agree to any prices with your solicitor before entering into the contract
- No upfront fee
- A success fee might be deducted from your compensation if your claim is settled, but this is limited as per the Conditional Fee Agreements Order 2013, so you won’t be overcharged
- Not having to pay your solicitor if your claim for a negligent discharge fails
Get in touch if you have suffered from a failed discharge and would like to work with one of our No Win No Fee solicitors to help you secure a compensation payout.
Thank you for reading our guide on claiming compensation for premature hospital discharge.
Resources and Useful Links
Hopefully, you have found the information you need about making a compensation claim for being discharged from the hospital too soon. However, you may find the links below helpful too:
Hospital Negligence Claims– This is our guide on hospital negligence claims
Being Discharged – NHS– This link takes you to the NHS website, where you will find information on being discharged from the hospital.
Dental Negligence Claims – Visit this guide to find out about making a claim following dental negligence.
Care Home Negligence Injury Claims – See this guide to learn about claiming for care home negligence.
Doctor Negligence Claims – In this guide, we explore whether you could make a claim against your doctor for negligence.
How Much Compensation For Medical Negligence Resulting In Death? – This guide will explore how you could make a claim on behalf of someone who has experienced death as a result of medical negligence.
How To Make A Misdiagnosis Claim – Visit our guide about claiming compensation for harm sustained after a medical misdiagnosis.
Further Medical Negligence Guides
- Medical Negligence Solicitors For Bradford
- Bristol Medical Negligence Solicitors
- Medical Negligence Solicitors For Bromley
- Medical Negligence Solicitors For Burnley
- Medical Negligence Solicitors For Burton Upon Trent
- Medical Negligence Solicitors For Bury
- Canterbury Medical Negligence Solicitors
- Medical Negligence Solicitors For Carlisle
- Chatham Medical Negligence Solicitors
- Chelmsford Medical Negligence Solicitors
- Hospital Infection Claims Guide