If you have suffered neglect or abuse (physical or sexual) due to the negligence of social services whilst in their care, you may have a claim against the local authority.
In certain circumstances, a claim could be made against the local authority for abuse by individuals that are not employed by social services such as a parent, another family member or a person visiting your home.
We’re specialists in getting justice and compensation for people who were let down whilst in the care of their local authority. Our friendly and dedicated team of Abuse Solicitors are here to listen as soon as you’re ready to talk and we’ll tell you if you can make a claim for compensation, during your initial free consultation.
You could qualify for Legal Aid, depending on your financial situation. If not, we could deal with your case on a No Win, No Fee basis.
Meet some of our Abuse Claims Solicitors
Why Choose Simpson Millar?
- We’re specialists – Our expert team of Abuse Solicitors understand this extremely complex area of law and can make the process as straightforward and stress-free as possible
- We want to open up the law – We’ll always talk to you in clear, straightforward language, and we won’t use complex legal jargon
- Accredited Lawyers - We’re members of the Association of Child Abuse Lawyers (ACAL) and we subscribe to its code of conduct
- We’ll keep you up to date – You’ll have a specific solicitor to contact who will keep you updated regularly
- Clear about your Legal Costs – We’ll be upfront about your legal costs in advance
Can I Claim Compensation for Abuse in Local Authority Care?
If you were under the care of the local authority and suffered neglect or abuse, you could make a claim against them if they were legally responsible to protect you from harm.
Circumstances in which the local authority could be held responsible for the neglect or abuse are:
- Where a local authority has assumed responsibility to protect you from danger
- Where the local authority has done something which prevented another from protecting you from danger
- Where the person that caused you the harm was under the local authority’s control
- Where the local authority’s employees created a source of danger
The rules around whether the local authority can be held responsible can be quite complex. That’s why it’s important to speak to a specialist Abuse Solicitor as they can advise you whether you have a claim.
People We've Helped
We helped a 30 year old man who’d been sexually abused at the age of 11 by a trainee social worker while living at a children’s home. The abuse had a lasting impact on him.
He self-harmed, suffered from depression and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and attempted to commit suicide.
But with the help of our Abuse Solicitors, he received a total of £50,000 in compensation. You can read the Full Case Study.
What’s the Claims Process?
- When you are ready to talk, we’ll speak to you confidentially about your experiences in the care of social services (local authority) to see if we can assist you to bring a claim. This initial consultation is free.
- If we take on your case, we’ll investigate your claim and request relevant documents and records, including your social care records.
- We may arrange an independent medical assessment with a medical expert. The expert will prepare a medical report outlining how the abuse has affected you and any treatment you need now and any future needs you may have.
- We’ll provide details of your claim to the local authority and start negotiations for a fair and appropriate settlement that meets your needs and reflects what you’ve been through
- Most abuse cases don’t go to Court, but if it does, we’ll be here to advise you one step at a time. We’ll instruct a Barrister to advise on your claim and to represent you at court.
How Long Do I have to make a Claim?
If the abuse occurred in childhood, you have until your 21st birthday to issue court proceedings in order to bring a claim for the abuse you suffered within time.
Importantly, it is well recognised that it often takes survivors of abuse a long time to talk about what happened to them. In some circumstances, the court can be persuaded to allow claims to proceed out of time.
Even if the abuse occurred many years ago, you may still be able to bring a claim and we can advise you whether we think we can persuade the court to allow you case to proceed out of time.
If the abuse occurred when you were an adult, you have 3 years from years of the date of the incident or period of abuse if there was more than a single incident.
Human Rights Act Claims
When the abuse occurred there may also have been a breach of your human rights. We’ll also consider if you have a claim under the Human Rights Act 1998.
Criminal Injuries Compensation Claims
You may be able to make a Criminal Injuries Compensation claim for the abuse you experienced whilst in the care of the Local Authority, if you have reported the abuse to the police. We’ll consider if you have a Criminal Injuries Compensation claim.
How Do I Pay My Legal Costs?
You may qualify for Legal Aid, depending on your financial circumstances. Alternatively, we could handle your claim on a No Win, No Fee basis, which means if your claim is successful, some of your legal costs will be paid. You won’t pay anything if your claim is not successful.
If you have Legal Expenses Insurance this could cover your legal costs. You would usually buy this as an addition to a motor or home insurance policy.
For free legal advice call our Abuse Claims Solicitors
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Simpson Millar Solicitors are a national law firm with over 500 staff and offices in Billingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Catterick, Lancaster, Leeds, Liverpool, London and Manchester.