No one really wants to have an accident. If you’ve stumbled over a loose paving stone, tripped in a pothole and suffered an injury, you may be able to claim compensation from the local council.
Your council has an obligation to ensure that areas like paving and roads and public areas are safe to use. There are certain criteria that have to be met in order to prove that the council were negligent in some respect. For instance:
- A pothole needs to be more than 40 mm deep.
- A paving stone that is not even and which you trip over needs to protrude more than an inch.
Pedestrians and road users such as cyclists are the most vulnerable when it comes to poorly maintained pavements and highways. You often don’t spot a problem until it’s too late.
Of course, suing the council can seem like a daunting prospect for most people. That’s why you need to gather your evidence and employ the services of an experienced legal team to help out. The good news is that law firms generally offer a no win no fee service which means you don’t have to start paying out sums of money to get involved in litigation.
What Evidence Should You Collect?
It’s generally the case that the road or pavement that was in disrepair when you had your accident will have been fixed by the time your claim comes to court. That’s why it’s important for you to collect evidence at the scene as much as possible. That will include taking photos of the damaged area – most of us carry around smart phones nowadays so it should be relatively easy to document things.
- You should also get someone to measure the pothole or area that contributed to your injury at the time. This isn’t always possible if you are in a lot of pain, but it makes a lot of sense when you are trying to prove your case to the council.
- If there are witnesses, make sure that you gather their contact details, including name and address so that they can be called on if needed.
- Any serious injury from an incident like this should be reported to the police as it can cause more accidents if left unattended. You will also get an incident number that you can use as proof of the accident.
Getting Legal Advice in Newcastle
It’s not always that easy to do these things on the spur of the moment but understanding the type of evidence that can help make your case can be important in the future. The next stage, of course, is to sit down and discuss your potential claim with a qualified personal injury lawyer.
Any claim needs to be made within three years of the incident occurring, although there are exceptions where this can be extended. It’s a good idea, however, to make your claim as soon as possible after the incident so that things are still fresh in your mind.
Sit down with the team at Accinet and get a free consultation in the first place to see if there is a case to answer by the council.
If you have had an accident and been injured which you feel is due to negligence by the local council, contact our experienced personal injury solicitors today to find out how we can help. Our no win no fee service means that you can get the advice and support you need straight away.