How Much Compensation Can I Claim Against A Doctor Or GP Negligence?
By Stephen Kane. Last Updated 14th September 2021. Welcome to our guide to making a claim for GP negligence compensation. Here, we explain how to report a negligent doctor ahead of GP negligence claims.
According to a 2021 survey conducted by the NHS, 83% of patients were pleased with their GP experience during this particular year. Of the 850,000 patients surveyed, 95.6% said they had confidence and trust in their healthcare professional. As it stands, a person’s GP (an abbreviation of a general practitioner) is usually trustworthy and greatly appreciated. However, there are instances when an accident occurs. If you have suffered from an injury as the result of a medical accident or complication, then it might be that your GP acted in a negligent manner. In cases such as these, you might be entitled to claim compensation.
Significantly, 45.8% of patients have a GP they prefer to see, which indicates how much we value a good, conscientious doctor. Negligence from healthcare professionals can lead to an exacerbation of an existing condition or can even cause new, more worrisome conditions. It can even result in death. Whether a GP has provided an incorrect diagnosis or has prescribed the wrong medication, has failed to act on test results correctly or failed to refer a patient to a specialist, negligence can be damaging. It can harm your health, your home life, and your finances.
How do I know if I have a claim for GP negligence?
Given the rules and regulations which govern medical care, you may find yourself asking, ‘do I have grounds to make GP negligence claims?’. Trying to determine the answer to this question is tough. As you will see in this guide, there are many factors you must take into account. However, if your GP has acted in a negligent manner, you may be entitled to compensation.
We work with a panel of medical negligence solicitors (authorised and regulated by the solicitors regulation authority) to help you claim the compensation you deserve. For a consultation about your case and free legal advice about any social care you receive, you can contact us today:
- Call us on 0800 073 8804
- Complete a contact form to get a callback
- Use the live chat feature on your screen to contact your local advisor
Select a section:
- A guide to Doctor and GP negligence claims.
- What is a GP negligence claim?
- General practitioner’s duty of care.
- Is doctor and GP negligence common?
- What different reasons for a doctor and GP negligence claims are there?
- Are there different types of GP negligence claims?
- What to do if you have been a victim of doctor or GP negligence?
- Claiming for GP negligence for another person.
- How to begin a doctor or GP negligence claim.
- What can you include in GP Negligence Claims?
- How much compensation will I get for a GP negligence claim?
- How long does a GP negligence claim take?
- NHS GP negligence compensation claims.
- No win no fee GP negligence claims.
- Why choose us as your claims service for a GP negligence claim?
- Call for free advice on GP Negligence Claims
The purpose of this guide is to provide you with an insight into the compensation claims process. Becoming embroiled in a compensation claim can be a stressful, confusing time, especially for those already suffering due to their injuries. As such, this guide provides a quick introduction to the process and how it can benefit you.
In this guide, we will examine the varying definitions of GP negligence claims, the length of time such a claim can take to complete, how to find the right law firm, and potential GP negligence payouts. While your case will have its own unique considerations, the guide is designed to provide information for those who believe they might have a claim, pointing them towards the next step towards winning the maximum compensation you deserve. And we note how to report a negligent doctor as well.
GP negligence claims can be defined in a variety of ways. Generally, it pertains to situations in which a GP has failed in their duty of care. This concept will be explained later in the guide. However, once this is demonstrated in a legal environment, it can be proved that the GP has provided negligent treatment or substandard care. If this is the case, then the claim against the GP has a greater chance of being successful.
Therefore, once you have demonstrated that your GP acted negligently and failed in their duty of care, you can attempt to win compensation.
This compensation is designed to address your losses. These losses can include demonstrable financial expenditures, such as medical treatment costs, travel costs, and lost wages. But it can also include more abstract damages, including compensation for the pain and suffering you have endured due to the negligence. With the correct legal assistance, you can ensure that a medical accident does not become too costly.
Time limits to consider
When making such a claim, there are several considerations you need to make. For instance, the GP negligence claims time limit is generally three years from the time of the accident. If the patient was under the age of 18 at the time of the accident, the time limit begins on their 18th birthday.
These rules apply by law due to the Limitation Act 1980. So consider if it has been more than three years since you were affected by an act of medical negligence. If it has, then you may unfortunately be unable to start a compensation claim.
Exceptions to the time limit and litigation friends
If a victim is currently a child, then they will be unable to start their own claim before they’re 18. However, there is the possibility that a personal injury claim can be started by someone else on behalf of a victim who is still currently a child. This representative looking to start the claim could serve as a litigation friend. Their role will be to protect the interests of the injured party. If you wish to represent someone else as a litigation friend, then you’ll need to be appointed by a court, which should happen as long as you are deemed suitable for the role. Usually, someone who serves as a litigation friend for a child is someone who is particularly close to that child, such as a parent or guardian.
Besides when someone under 18 is involved, another way the three year time limit for claiming can be put on hold is when the injured party lacks the mental capacity to make decisions independently. In the event that the victim later regains enough mental capacity to act as an independent person, the three year time limit will activate from the moment this occurs (assuming of course that the victim is 18 or over). While a victim is still lacking the mental capacity to make decisions independently, a claim could potentially be started on their behalf with the help of a litigation friend.
Evidence and choosing legal representation
As well as time limits, you should consider the evidence you can provide in support of your claim, as well as which law firm is best placed to help you. Of course. that is assuming that you wish to hire a solicitor to support your claim. We will cover these issues (and more) in this guide.
According to the National Health Service (NHS) Act of 2006, General Practitioners owe their patients a duty of care. GPs are expected to provide skilled, reasonable care when administering treatments to patients.
This means that your GP must have the necessary educational and legal qualifications required to practice in the United Kingdom. Reasonable care means that your GP needs to exercise reasonable caution when diagnosing patients, giving advice, or administering treatments. Duty of care will likely play a large role in any compensation claim.
The NHS’s 2019/20 Resolutions Annual Report revealed that new clinical negligence claims increased by 9.35%. Strikingly, maternity claims costs account for around 70% of the cost of medical negligence cases are becoming increasingly common.
Additionally, GP negligence can manifest in several different ways. Keep these in mind as we explain how to report a negligent doctor. Cases can include (but are not limited to):
- Failure or delay in investigating symptoms, referring the patient to a specialist, or acting on test results.
- Inappropriate or insufficient medicine prescriptions.
- Failure to review medication.
- Inadequate monitoring of illness.
Given the huge volume of patients requiring medical attention in UK hospitals every day, accidents and mistakes can occur. Added to that, they can be costly. At the same time, there is an increasing number of patients seeking private medical care or care for cosmetic issues. These cases can also be affected by negligence. If you believe that a case of GP negligence has harmed you, then you may be owed compensation.
With the human body prone to such a wide range of medical complaints and conditions, it should not be a surprise to note that cases resulting in GP negligence (or medical negligence in general) can involve many different circumstances. Among the most common GP negligence claims examples are:
- Surgical Complications: While most GPs will not perform surgical procedures, they can prescribe and advise on such matters in a negligent manner. Should you suffer injuries due to a poorly performed surgery, the GP may be at fault.
- Anaesthesia Mistakes: in a similar fashion to surgical complications, anaesthesia mistakes can result from negligence on the part of a GP. Failure to diagnose or note potential complications arising from anaesthesia can damage your health.
- Cosmetic Procedure Errors: errors resulting from cosmetic surgeries are becoming increasingly common. Errors can result from misdiagnosis or bad advice, which can, in turn, be the fault of a GP or other doctor.
- General Misdiagnosis: your GP is expected to issue a timely and correct diagnosis of your condition so that the illness can be treated before your health worsens. If they fail to do this, and you can prove that their inaction has made the situation worse, GP negligence claims could be made.
- Care Negligence: If you or any of your loved ones live in a nursing home or assisted care facility and they sustain injuries due to improper care, you can also make a compensation claim.
Essentially, a GP’s negligence can result in all manner of health-related accidents. Even the prescribing of bad advice can be viewed as a negligent action.
While each compensation claim can have its own unique qualities and considerations, it can be possible to group the majority of claims into four broad categories. These three categories are:
- Contributory Negligence: in cases of contributory negligence, it is decided that the patient’s own action or inaction was a contributing factor to their health concerns. If, for instance, a GP prescribed medicine but the patient failed to administer it, the patient will be deemed responsible. As such, no compensation is likely to be awarded.
- Vicarious Liability: vicarious liability claims refer to a situation in which you choose to make claims against the organisation responsible for employing and managing the defendant. Their management of the medical practitioner may be seen as at fault. For instance, GP claims against the NHS can be categorised as vicarious liability claims.
- Gross Negligence: the most serious of the three categories in matters concerning medical professionals. Given that doctors, GPs, and other medical staff have a duty to prioritise their patients’ health, cases of gross negligence involve the defendant disregarding this completely. In addition to compensation claims, all gross negligence cases are typically taken to court, and guilty parties will revoke their medical licences.
Depending on the circumstances of your particular case, our experts will be able to tell you if your claim matches closely with any of the main four categories when dealing with potenial GP negligence claims. And this will also help as you recognise how to report a negligent doctor.
If you have been the victim of GP negligence, there are several steps that you can take to ensure better your compensation claim is successful. In situations such as this, we advise that you:
- Gather Your Evidence: records are very important. Any statements, prescriptions, notes, and letters issued by your doctor, GP or medical practitioner can be important.
- Get a Medical Assessment: there are two reasons for this. The first is to ensure that you are not currently being mistreated. Seeking advice from a different doctor or GP can help restore your health. Secondly, seeking this advice can allow you to determine the long-term health implications of the GP negligence as well as corroborating any potential claim you might have.
- Find a Law Firm: Given any potential lawsuit’s complexity, having legal representation can be essential. If you speak to our team, we can arrange for you to have a medical assessment with a local doctor. Likewise, we can offer a free consultation session to go over your case.
Should you decide to move forward with a claim, we can act as your proxy. This can mean dealing with the organisation or GP in question, filing the correct paperwork, and handling the claims process on your behalf.
In cases in which GP negligence leads to the death of a loved one or when the person(s) affected is unable to claim compensation, a third party can do so on their behalf.
If you can prove the GP’s negligence and are either a parent, spouse or civil partner, you can claim what is known as a bereavement award. This is claimed through the deceased party’s estate and currently stands at just under £13,000. In addition, it is possible to claim funeral costs and compensation for pain and suffering that the deceased person might have endured.
Now, in the cases of parents claiming deceased children, they may do so, providing that the child was below 18 years of age. In situations where a civil partner or spouse was financially dependent on the deceased, it is also possible to make a dependency claim and ensure that the family does not suffer financially due to GP negligence.
The easiest, quickest way of launching GP negligence claims is to hire a legal professional. If you call our offices, for example, we get started by arranging for you to participate in a free, no obligations consultation session. The purpose of this consultation is to provide you with an expert opinion as to the merits of your case. We’ll examine any evidence you can provide and discuss the matter in great detail with you. In making GP negligence claims, there are three factors to take into consideration. You should be able to prove that:
- A duty of care was owed.
- That the GP failed in their duty of care.
- You suffered harm as a direct result of this failure.
Following the consultation session, if we believe you have a viable claim, we can provide complete guidance on the next step. We can provide fact-finding to gather further evidence, a medical assessment with a doctor local to you, and discuss how our ‘No Win No Fee’ agreement could help you. All of this is part of the process of how to report a negligent doctor.
If you are considering a compensation claim for GP negligence, you might be interested in knowing exactly what damages you can recover. It is not only the health concerns themselves which are compensated. With the right legal team, you can seek compensation in the form of:
- General damages: these relate to the pain and suffering which you may have endured. It can also include the impact on your day-to-day life and losses to your reputation.
- Care claim: if your personal injury or health concerns have required hiring a nurse or personal carer, then the costs can be compensated following a successful claim.
- Loss of earnings: if you have been forced to take time away from work, any loss of earnings will be factored into the settlement. Additionally, it can be possible to claim the loss of future earnings in some cases.
- Travel Expenses: This can include expenses from travelling back and forth from medical appointments, including fuel costs and train fare.
- Medical Bills: Medical bills can include the need for specialist equipment, private treatment, or physiotherapy.
If you have suffered an injury due to a GP’s negligence, being able to claim back the above expenses through GP negligence claims can help restore the financial balance of your life.
Determining the amount of compensation you might receive following GP Negligence claims is not simple. We have included the below table as a rough GP negligence claims calculator, allowing you to obtain pre-determined figures based on average payouts in the past. However, it should be remembered that the unique circumstances of your claim can mean that your payout amount may well be different.
|Foot Injury||Modest||Up to £12,900||Minor damage to foot and simple fractures; pain as result of injury.|
|Foot Injury||Moderate||£12,900 to £23,460||Displaced metatarsal fractures and continuing symptoms/deformity.|
|Foot Injury||Severe||£39,390 to £65,710||Fractures of both heels/feet or unusually severe injury to a single foot.|
|Achilles||Moderate||£11,820 to £19,770||Partial rupture or substantial injury to the tendon.|
|Ankle Injury||Severe||£29,380 to £46,980||Significant affect on mobility and extensive treatment needed.|
|Knee Injury||Moderate||Up to £24,580||Includes lacerations, dislocations and torn cartilage; can result in minor instability or other mild future disability.|
|Knee Injury||Severe||£24,580 to £90,290||Less severe and severe disability, including loss of function.|
|Leg Injury||Moderate||£26,050 to £36,790||Complicated/multiple fractures to one limb or severe crushing injuries.|
|Leg Injury||Severe||£90,320 to £127,530||Serious injuries falling short of amputation.|
The above injuries are selected examples designed to indicate how big a role the severity of an injury can play in any compensation claim. If the negligence of your GP has caused an injury or health concern and you would like an estimate of any potential payout, discuss the matter with our team today. We can analyse GP negligence claims and the potential payouts which may be offered based on the case details provided to us.
Depending on the nature and severity of your case, your claim is typically fought over the course of many months. As such, the average length of time is eight months. Due to the unique nature of every case, however, certain claims can take much longer. If you would like an estimate of the amount of time it might take to make a claim, you can call our offices and arrange for a free consultation session.
The NHS is expected to provide routine screenings, prescriptions, treatment of mild or severe health conditions, surgeries, and end of life care to patients and – just like GPs – the NHS also owes patients a duty of care to exercise skill and caution when handling medical cases. However, due to the sheer number of patients, the NHS can sometimes provide the same quality healthcare to all patients.
We have worked on many NHS GP negligence claims over the years. We have succeeded in helping our clients obtain compensation for NHS misdiagnosis, surgical negligence, errors in prescriptions, and incorrect medical advice.
A three-year statute of limitation on NHS GP negligence claims is standard in many compensation cases. The NHS also provides their own channel for complaints, offering procedures to provide you with a solution before resorting to legal action. However, the two are not mutually exclusive, and it is possible to hire legal assistance even after making a complaint that has not been resolved. Call us today to learn how to report a negligent doctor or make NHS GP negligence claims.
Perhaps the most difficult part of making a compensation claim is dealing with the finances. In the aftermath of a health scare, trying to make GP negligence claims can seem like a tough battle. This is particularly true if you have had to take time away from work or purchase expensive medical equipment or hire private healthcare. Such accidents can cost you a lot of money, and hiring an expert legal team can be expensive.
This is why we offer a ‘No Win No Fee’ agreement. Consequently, clients don’t have to pay upfront or worry about debts or, in their case, costing too much. We take our costs from the final compensation amount. This only happens when the case is successful. This arrangement, also referred to as a Conditional Fee Agreement, can be a huge help when you’re seeking compensation.
Picking the right law firm is important. You need to trust and rely on your medical negligence solicitor to win you compensation for hospital negligence. This is why so many clients turn to us.
We put the well-being of our clients first, making it our number one priority. This could be offering a free legal consultation to help guide you through the early stages of your process of offering a medical assessment with a local doctor, so you don’t need to worry about the long term implications of your issue. It can even be the ‘No Win No Fee’ agreement we offer, helping you forget about any upfront costs.
If you want to take advantage of our years of legal experience, we’re only ever one phone call away. Thanks to our professional knowledge, you can find that fighting for compensation is much easier than you ever expected.
If you would like to discuss a potential medical negligence claim, you can either call 0800 073 8804 or fill out the contact form on our website. For experienced legal representation, get in touch today.
GP Negligence Compensation FAQs
Can you sue a GP?
If a doctor is negligent, which affects your health, you could make a medical negligence claim. You’re welcome to contact us about GP negligence claims and whether you could potentially start such a claim if you’ve been affected by a doctor’s negligent behaviour.
How do I complain about a GP?
You can make a complaint through the NHS medical complaints procedure. But, if the results prove to be unsatisfactory and you’ve suffered medical negligence, you could consider making a claim.
What qualifies as medical negligence?
Medical negligence happens when a medical professional doesn’t provide a patient with the appropriate care.
Can I take my GP to court?
Yes, you can, but only if there is clear evidence of your doctor causing either physical or psychological harm.
Is it worth complaining about the NHS?
Yes, and it’s something patients should do to allow the NHS to demonstrate how they can improve their services.
What if my GP won’t refer me?
It may be worth changing your GP in this scenario.
Can I sue my GP for misdiagnosis?
You can if there is sufficient proof that the diagnosis was incorrect.
Do the NHS settle out of court?
NHS Resolution can handle out-of-court settlements.
Have you or a family member been wrongly diagnosed? Find out if you can claim compensation today.
If you suffer an injury or negligence at a care home, read about making a claim for care home negligence.
We have a guide for you to see what to do after receiving the wrong medication at a care home.
Find out how to complain about an NHS doctor or GP on this NHS complaints procedure link.
Every NHS organisation has a complaints procedure. To complain about an NHS service such as a hospital, GP or doctor, click this link to find out more.
Thank you for reading our guide to making a claim against a GP. We hope you have learned a lot about GP negligence claims and GP negligence compensation. But please speak to us if you need to know how to report a negligent doctor.