Accident on Holiday - Your Rights Explained
If a tour operator has sold you a package holiday at a single price, it’s their responsibility to ensure every aspect of it meets with the local safety standards. So if you’re injured in an accident on holiday at your hotel or resort, or on a tour or event that your tour operator has arranged, you may be entitled to compensation.
Of course, you’re likely to have been covered by travel insurance while on holiday, for medical expenses and costs, but each travel insurance policy will offer a different level of protection, and will usually have a policy excess to pay. Any payout from your travel insurer will probably be well below what you actually need to cope with the full impact of your injury.
But thankfully, there are laws that give injured British holidaymakers an extra level of protection if they suffer an accident abroad resulting in injuries and want to be fully compensated. With the right compensation settlement, you should be able to recover any medical fees and other expenses you’ve paid out, be reimbursed for your loss of earnings and have the funds to access your future care and support needs.
Our Holiday Claims Solicitors are experts in helping holidaymakers obtain compensation and rehabilitation support following accidents abroad. For example:
For free legal advice get in touch with our Holiday Claims Solicitors and we’ll be happy to assess the details of your claim. We may be able to deal with your claim on a No Win, No Fee basis – ask us for details.
What Laws Protect Holidaymakers?
Package Travel Regulations
While some people choose to arrange each element of a holiday separately, many prefer to book a package holiday instead, so every aspect can be paid for in one go and provided by a single company.
If that’s the case, then under the Package Travel Regulations, your tour operator is responsible for any element of your trip, such as your hotel, transfers or flights, and could be liable if something goes wrong. For instance, if you slip and fall on a wet floor surface in the hotel and there were no signs displayed warning of the potential hazard, or the floor was defective, this could be grounds for making a claim.
The Montreal Convention states that an airline is responsible if you’re injured at any stage of your flight. This can include boarding and disembarking the plane, as well as mid-flight. For more information see Accident on an Airline.
If your package holiday includes air travel, the tour operator must have an Air Travel Organisers Licence (ATOL). The ATOL scheme gives a guarantee that holidaymakers will be protected from being stranded overseas or from losing their money if something goes wrong.
Travel operators must be checked by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) in order to obtain an ATOL and will then be required to pay money into its financial security scheme. This means the CAA can compensate consumers if the worst happens and the travel operator is unable to pay them back.
You can easily check on the CAA website if a tour operator is a member of the ATOL scheme before booking a package holiday.
If you were injured in an accident on a cruise ship, see Cruise Ship Accident claims.
What Can I Claim Compensation For?
If you claim compensation for an accident on holiday, your settlement will be valued to reflect:
- The pain and suffering you’ve gone through following your accident
- Any loss of income if you’ve not been able to work
- Medical expenses and out of pocket costs that you’ve incurred
- Loss of enjoyment if you suffered distress and disappointment because of your holiday accident
- Loss of value - reflecting that the holiday you experienced wasn’t up to the standards you expected and paid for.
We can also help you if you are claiming compensation on behalf of a child who has been injured in an accident on holiday.
Simpson Millar is a national law firm with over 500 staff and offices in Bristol, Cardiff, Lancaster, Leeds, Liverpool, London - Euston, London - Fleet Street, London - Teddington, Manchester, Morecambe and Southport.