Making an injury claim can be a confusing process. In this article, we’ll discuss steps to take when making a military injury claim.
If you’ve suffered an injury from your time in the military, then you may need to speak to someone who deals with military injury claims to seek compensation. It might feel confusing initially. However, the process of making a claim can be straightforward with the right assistance.
Of course, how difficult the matter can depend on the severity of your injury and claim, but there are plenty of helpful resources available to help guide you through the process. In this article, we’ll discuss what you can claim for and outline the steps to take to get your claim started.
What Are the Most Common Military Injuries?
There are various reasons why someone may make a military injury claim. Some of the most common injuries and reasons to make a claim include:
- Injuries from training exercises
- Injuries on the battlefield
- Blast or firearm injuries
- Collisions involving military vehicles
- Injuries caused by military equipment
- Cold weather injuries, including hypothermia and frostbite
- Hot weather injuries
- Musculoskeletal injuries
- Falls from height and crush injuries
- Hearing loss and tinnitus
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
It’s important to follow through with your claims to get help financially. Military injury claim compensation can help with the cost of:
- Private medical treatment
- Rehabilitation and specialist therapy
- Home and vehicle adaptations
- Specialist equipment
- Care and household assistance
- Loss of earnings
- Future loss of earnings and pension
- Loss of resettlement grant
- Travel expenses for hospital appointments
- Loss of other service benefits.
What is the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme?
The Armed Forces Compensation Scheme (AFCS) was set up by the government to provide compensation to military personnel injured on or after 6 April 2005. It’s managed by Veterans UK and uses a tariff system to award set payments for injuries caused by service.
The two main types of AFCS awards include:
- A tax-free lump sum payment for pain and suffering
- A Guaranteed Income Payment (GIP) which is a tax-free, index-linked monthly payment.
For those no longer serving who have a disablement caused or made worse by serving before the 6th of April 2005, you can make a claim through the War Pension Scheme instead.
Whilst it’s advised to make a claim through the AFCS, it’s also a good idea to make a civil claim again the Ministry of Defence at the same time. This is because claims that go through the AFCS are capped at £650,000. You might be likely to secure a higher level of compensation from a civil court if your claim qualifies.
How Long do you Have to Make a Claim?
As mentioned, the AFCS covers injuries sustained from service from the 6th of April 2005, you have 7 years to make a military injury claim from when you sustained the injury. However, you have 3 years to make a military personal injury claim for civil claims.
Steps to Take to Make a Claim
When it comes to making the claim, you have several options. You don’t necessarily have to hire a legal professional to make the claim, but it’s highly recommended that you do to receive the appropriate amount of compensation.
You’ll find free independent advice from a range of charities and organizations such as the Veterans Welfare Services. Whether you go through a solicitor or charity, it’s paramount that you speak to a professional about your injury. Let them listen to how it’s affected your life and how it’s likely to affect the rest of it. That way, they can determine how to proceed with your claim.
After speaking to a professional about your injuries, a form will be submitted through the AFCS and then you will have to await the result. It’s unlikely your claim will end up in court unless, of course, you disagree on the outcome or amount of the claim awarded. Most civil-military injury claims can also be settled out of court through negotiation.
Can You Make a Claim Whilst Still Serving in the Military?
Yes, you can make a claim whilst still serving in the military and it should not affect your status in the army at all. You have a right to make a legal claim for injuries sustained in a non-combat situation. You should not be discriminated against for making a claim, and you cannot be discharged, disciplined, or sanctioned in any way for it whilst still serving.
Making a military injury claim…
It’s important to make a claim where you’ve experienced an injury whilst serving. This is mainly to help aid you in recovery or financially ease your adjusted lifestyle due to the injury. Whilst you don’t have to speak to a professional it’s highly recommended that you do, as experienced solicitors can help you gain the maximum compensation possible. If you’ve experienced a life-changing injury, then this is especially important to have for you and your family.
Please be advised that this article is for general informational purposes only and should not be used as a substitute for advice from a trained legal professional. Be sure to consult a lawyer/solicitor if you’re seeking advice on military-injury claims. We are not liable for risks or issues associated with using or acting upon the information on this site.