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I Do Not Know Who Owns The Land/Property Can I Still Make A Personal Injury Claim? – How To Find Out Who Owns The Land/Property?

If you’re injured in an accident, which was caused by somebody else’s negligence, you may already know that you could make a compensation claim.  What happens though if you’re left asking this question: “I’m not sure who owns the land, can I still make a personal injury claim?”

Well, this guide is going to try and provide you with all of the relevant information.  If you’re already in position to begin a claim, call us today on 0800 073 8804.  One of our personal injury specialists will happily discuss your claim for you.

If you need more information first, then please carry on reading this guide which should answer all of your questions.

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A Guide To Making A Personal Injury Claim When You Don’t Know Who Owns The Land Or Property

Making a personal injury claim for an accident on land, or in a property, where the owner is unknown can be tricky.  How do you sue someone if you don’t know who they are or what if liability is denied?

In this guide, we’re going to try and help you resolve these types of issue.  We’ll also show what amounts of compensation you might be entitled to, what type of injuries you can claim for and how to use no win no fee services to make a claim.

We’ll also try to answer some of these common questions:

  • “How do I claim injury compensation where liability is in dispute?”
  • “Who is liable if someone falls on your property?”
  • “How many personal injury claims go to court?”
  • “What is contributory negligence?”
  • “Do I need a personal injury solicitor to make a personal injury claim?”
  • “What is the average payout for a personal injury claim?”

We’ll cover methods of finding out who owns a property and how to prove your claim if there is disputed liability.  This type of claim can be quite complex, especially if the defendant and their solicitor deny any wrongdoing.  Using Legal Expert means you’ll have an experienced personal injury solicitor on your side.

If you still have questions after reading this guide, please get in touch.  These types of claims can be tricky, so we’re happy to help you by offering free legal advice about what you need to do prior to making a claim.

What Is An Unknown Or Disputed Liability Accident Claim?

Under UK law, you are able to claim compensation for an injury caused by somebody else’s negligence.   Usually it is quite obvious who was at fault and caused the accident but in some cases it’s more difficult.

As an example, if you have an accident at retail stand in a shopping centre and the retailer denies liability as they believe it is down to the shopping centre.  Who is to blame?  What if the shopping centre also denies liability?

You could be left in limbo not knowing where to turn.  It’d be quite easy to walk away and not bother claiming at this point, but we think you should continue trying to identify who’s to blame.  This guide is going to try and help you understand what you can do in cases where it’s difficult to ascertain who is liable.

Importantly, there are personal injury claims time limits in the UK.  This means that you’ll need to have started any claim within 3 years of the accident happening.  Don’t leave it too late though, as a personal injury lawyer will require time to prepare the claim.

When It Could Be Difficult To Know Who Is Liable For Your Accident

You might think that making a claim for compensation for an accident would automatically be made against the owner of property or land where the accident happened.  In some cases, that might be true, but not always.

Another legal entity exists who could also be claimed against – the occupier.  Under the Occupiers Liability Act 1957, the occupier can have a duty of care to visitors which supersedes any duty that the owner might have.  So, who do you claim against?

It can be even trickier to make a claim when you don’t know who actually owns a piece of land.  There are some things you can do to identify a land or property owner which we’ll explain in the next section.  We’ll also provide information about the different laws can be used to base a claim on.

Finding Out Who Owns The Land Or A Property

It can sometimes take a lot of detective work to find out who owns a piece of land.  There are 25 million entries in the UK land registry, which can be searched, but there are other pieces of land that are unregistered.

The land registry offers an online search facility.  For a fee, you can search by address or location.  The title deeds will tell you the landowners name and any rights of way across it.

If you’re unable to identify who owns a piece of land, a claim could still be possible.

Things you could try to identify who owns a piece of land include:

  • Speaking to other property owners nearby.
  • Check the electoral register.
  • Ask in local shops, pubs or post office.
  • Make a search of the local authority records.
  • Ask the local council if they’ve ever had any planning requests.

Local knowledge is often the key to finding out who owns, or who is responsible for a piece of land or property, but it can take a lot of work tracking down that knowledge!

If you’re unable to locate the landowner following the above steps, call our team.  We may be able to help even though you’ve not yet identified the owner.

Claiming Compensation Under The Occupiers Liability Act

Under the Occupiers Liability Act (1957), the person or company which occupies a building or piece of land, has a duty of care for all visitors.  Essentially, the occupier has to ensure that any visitor is ‘reasonably safe’ at all times.

This means that the occupier should take steps to reduce risks to visitors.  There are many things that an occupier could do including:

  • Ensuring all staff are trained in health and safety measures.
  • Warning visitors of any risks with signage.
  • Making unsafe areas “out of bounds”.
  • Repairing any defects quickly.

There are many other steps that can be taken.  The main test for liability is whether your accident and injuries could’ve been prevented had the occupier done something differently.

Cases Involving Contributory Negligence

Sometimes, in cases of disputed liability, the claimant has to admit to being partly to blame for an accident.   This is known as contributory negligence.  It doesn’t mean a claim can’t move forward though.

For instance, if you slipped on a wet floor where no warning signs were in place, but you were looking at your phone instead of looking where you were going, you would be partly at fault.

In these cases, the defendant might accept some responsibility, but not all.  Therefore, the solicitors from both sides would agree a percentage of liability.  If your solicitor agreed you were 25% liable for the accident, you’d receive 75% of the normal compensation award.

What If Liability Is Denied?

In some personal injury claims, liability is denied completely by the defendant.  In these cases, Legal Expert will assess the arguments put forward to them by the defendant.

Even though it’s very rare for claims to end up in court, we’d have to assess the chances of you winning the case if it did so.  If we believe that you have a strong case, then a court date could be set.   We would always try to counter any arguments before going to court but in some cases, it is the only way for a claim to be settled.

However, if the defence solicitor highlighted a strong defence which we believe would be held up in court, your case would end.

Accidents And Injuries On Private Property

Any occupier of a private commercial property has a duty of care to ensure the safety of all visitors, even those who shouldn’t have been on site.   If you’re involved in an accident, caused by negligence and you were injured, you might be able to claim against the company responsible.

If you are injured in a private property, you should:

  • Find out who owns or occupies the property and report the accident to them. They should record it in an accident report form.
  • Seek medical treatment for your injuries. Obtain copies of the medical records as evidence of your injuries.
  • Ask witnesses for their details. If they are able to do so, ask for a statement of what they saw too.
  • Take photographs of the scene of the accident. Capture as much detail as possible including the cause of the accident.  Try to do this as quickly as possible before anything is repaired or removed from the scene.
  • If there is CCTV footage covering the area, ask for a copy. CCTV is usually only retained for short periods, so act quickly to secure it.
  • Photograph any visible injuries. These can be used in addition to the medical records to prove the extent of your injuries.
  • Write a summary of what happened. It’s quite easy to forget details such as places, times, dates etc so doing this will help you later on.

When you have all of these details, give legal expert a call to discuss your claim.  We’ll assess whether you have a strong case or not.  If you do, we offer no win no fee claims for all cases we take on.

Accidents And Injuries On Public Property

In the same way that private landowners have a duty of care, public property owners do too.  This might be the local authority or council.   If you’re not sure who owns the land or property, contact any local authorities and ask them.  They will soon be able to tell you if it is their responsibility.

In some cases, where accidents have happened on public highways (footpaths, pavements, cycle paths etc), the claim might be made under the Highways Act 1980 instead of the Occupiers Liability Act.

Steps should be taken to secure evidence similar to the previous section.  Any photographs, witness statements or CCTV footage will help make your claim easier.  Councils will usually pass any claims against them to the provider of their public liability insurance who will deal with your solicitor.

Accidents And Injuries In A Residential Property

We often receive questions like:

  • “Does homeowners insurance cover you if someone is injured on your property?”
  • “What happens if someone gets injured on your property?”
  • “If someone gets hurt on your property are you liable?”

Essentially, homeowners could be held liable for accidents on their property if they were caused by negligence.   The homeowner may have an element of public liability insurance included as part of their home insurance policy.

The occupier of the property has a duty of care to ensure visitors remain reasonably safe for the duration of their visit.  They are bound by the Occupiers Liability Act in the same way as other property occupiers mentioned earlier.

Therefore, if you’re injured in a residential property, whether as a visitor, tradesman (builder, plumber etc) or visitor, you might be able to begin a claim.

Give our experts a call with details of your accident and let us know what happened.  If possible, try to gather any of the evidence discussed earlier in this guide.

What Could I Claim When Injured On Land Or Property

When a claim for compensation is prepared, it can include multiple parts.  Each part is based on different types of losses.  The losses that might be included in a claim include:

  • General Damages: This is compensation that’s paid to the victim to cover the pain and suffering caused by their injuries.
  • Travel Expenses: If your injuries cause extra travelling, you may be able to claim the cost back. This could be if you have to make alternative travel arrangements.  These costs could also cover any fuel costs and parking costs associated with medical appointments.
  • Medical Expenses: You might be able to claim for prescriptions, treatment (such as physiotherapy) and any over the counter medicines linked to your injuries.
  • Care Costs: As well as medical costs, you may need to claim for any professional care required because of your injuries.
  • Loss of Income: If your salary is reduced because of time off caused by your injuries, you might claim this loss back.  You could also claim for future income loss if your problems are long-term.
  • Personal Property Damage: If items are damaged when you are injured, such as clothing, luggage or jewellery, you could claim the cost of repairing or replacing the item.

Keep any receipts associated with your claim and give them to your solicitor.  If you’re not sure if you’ll be able to include an expense, give us a call first.  We’ll let you know if we think it’ll be allowed as part of your claim.

Personal Injury Calculator For Accidents On Private Or Public Property

You’ll probably want to know the amount of compensation that you might be entitled to prior to claiming.  A personal injury claims calculator can give you an indication which is why we’ve included the table below.  It includes information which lawyers, judges and insurers use to agree compensation figures for specific injuries.

InjurySeriousnessMaximum PaymentComments / Details
HandMinor to seriousUp to £54,280This very wide range of injuries starts with bruising and other soft tissue damage and up to loss of use of the hand (long term).
WristMinor to severeUp to £52,480This very wide range of injuries starts with strains and sprains through to loss of the use of the wrist (long term).
ArmModerate to severeUp to £114,810This very wide range of injuries starts with injuries which are painful but do heal and go up to injuries that cause paralysis and other permanent damage.
FingerMinor to severeUp to £21,920This very wide range of injuries starts with bruising and tissue damage and up to the amputation of one or more fingers.
ThumbMinor to severeUp to £48,020This very wide range of injuries starts with tissue damage injuries and go up to the amputation of a single thumb.
BackMinor to severeUp to £141,150This very wide range of injuries starts with sprains, strains and bruising and go up to injuries causing restricted movement and pain while healing (long term).
NeckMinor to severeUp to £130,060This very wide range of injuries starts with very simple soft tissue damage injuries and go up to those which cause loss of movement with permenant pain.
ToeModerate to severeUp to £49,120This very wide range of injuries starts with bruising, strains and soft tissue damage through to the complete amputation of all toes.
AnkleMinor to severeUp to £61,120This very wide range of injuries starts with sprains, strains and bruising and go through to loss of use of the ankle (permanent).
Foot Minor to very severeUp to £96,120This very wide range of injuries starts with soft tissue damage and up to injuries which result in the loss of the entire foot.
LegMinor to severeUp to £119,220This very wide range of injuries starts with basic soft tissue damage injuries and go up to injuries which result in a permenant disability.

This table isn’t comprehensive as there are too many injuries to list here.  If your injury isn’t listed, please call.  One of our advisors will happily provide you with an estimated compensation figure.

No Win No Fee Claims Where You Do Not Know Who Is Liable

After answering the question “I’m not sure who owns the land, can I still make a personal injury claim?”, the next one is often “How can I afford to make a claim?” and that’s where no win no fee claims can be the answer.

A no win no fee claim means a solicitor has agreed to take on your case and will only be paid if they win compensation for you.  If they lose, they don’t get paid anything at all.

You’ll be given a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA) which is what no win no fee is known as legally.  It will confirm the fact you don’t pay if the case is lost.  It will also provide details of the success fee.

A success fee is a percentage of your compensation that will be paid to the solicitor if they win the case.  The good news is that you don’t actually have to find the funds to pay the success fee.  When a case is won, compensation is paid to the solicitor who retains their fee and sends the rest straight to you.

Success fees are limited to maximum of 25% of your compensation but could be less.  No win no fee makes claiming a lot less stressful and risk-free in that you won’t have to stump up any money to fund the claim at any point.

Why Make Your Claim With Us?

Legal Expert have been helping our clients for many years.  We are experienced in all sorts of personal injury claims, including those where liability has been disputed.

We are friendly, professional and committed to ensuring our clients receive the best possible compensation amount in every case we take on.  During your claim, we are always on hand to answer any questions that you may have.

We try to follow the same personal injury claims settlement process for all cases to be as efficient as possible, but sometimes delays are beyond our control.  We will, though, keep you up to date throughout the claim to ensure you know what’s happening.

When choosing the best accident claim company to take on your case, reviews can be really helpful. If you’d like to read some reviews from previous clients, then take a look here.

How To Contact Our Team

Hopefully this guide has helped you to decide that you’d like to make a claim with Legal Expert.  If so, you can get in touch with us in many ways, including:

  • Telephone: Give our team a call on 0800 073 8804 and speak with a specialist advisor.
  • Live chat: If you’d prefer to start your claim online, use our live chat feature, 7 days a week.
  • Email: Send details of your claim to info@legalexpert.co.uk and we’ll get back to you at a suitable time.
  • Online: If you prefer, you can fill in this online form to start your claim.

When you contact us, we’ll offer you a free initial consultation where we’ll offer free legal advice for any questions you have.  We’ll also assess your claim and decide whether you have a strong case or not.  If you do, we’ll prepare a no win no fee agreement.  Once signed, we’ll start working on your claim right away.

Helpful Guides And Resources

Thanks for reading this guide which has hopefully answer the question “I’m not sure who owns the land can I still make a personal injury claim?”.  For more information, we’ve linked to some further documents which you might find useful.

Personal Injury on Private Property – Information on how to make a claim on for an accident on private property.  In this instance, the landlord or owner of the land is known.

Accidents at Rented Property – A guide on making personal injury claims for accidents in a rented property.

Council Property Accident Claims – Details of when it is possible to make a personal injury claim against the local council.

The Occupiers Liability Act (1957) – The government legislation that outlines the duty of care that occupiers have to visitor of their property.

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