A Guide to Claiming Pub or Bar Injury Compensation

The following guide takes you through what you need to know about making a pub or bar accident compensation claim.


Injuries sustained in bars, pubs and nightclubs leading to occupiers liability compensation claims are all too common. What should you do if you sustain an injury in a bar or pub?

Excessive alcohol consumption often leads to attacks or fights which can result in injury. Incidents of this nature would be considered a criminal matter;


Criminal Claims

Being the victim of a violent crime is often a frightening and distressing experience and the physical and psychological effects can remain for a long time after the incident. If a claimant is attacked in a bar, it should be reported to the police as soon as possible.

The 'Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme' (CICA) is a government funded scheme designed to compensate blameless victims of violent crime in Great Britain.

The scheme means that it is not necessary to wait for a trial to happen. CICA uses the legal basis of "balance of probabilities" meaning what is the most likely version of events, not the criminal court test which is "beyond reasonable doubt".

Compensation can be claimed for pain and suffering experienced as a result of the attack. If the attack has made a pre-existing medical condition worse, a claim can also be made. Travel expenses, further medical costs and loss of earnings can also be claimed for.

A claim can be made up to two years after the attack, although the CICA encourages individuals to make a claim as soon as possible.

Negligence Claims

Accidents also occur as a result of company or occupier negligence.

If an individual is injured in a bar through staff or company negligence, it may be possible to make a claim.

As a lawful visitor to a pub or club, the business owner and the owner of the building have a duty of care to ensure that patrons are kept safe whilst on their premises.

Failure to abide by this duty of care could lead to very serious consequences.

As with all claims, in order to be awarded compensation the claimant would have to prove that someone else was to blame for the accident.

The amount of compensation available would be dependent on the type and severity of the injury. Compensation can also be claimed for further expenses such as travel and medical bills.

How can Quittance help if you have been injured in a Bar or Restaurant?

Quittance's panel of solicitors have assisted in occupier liability and negligence cases that include slipping on an unmarked wet floor and an individual receiving serious cuts from glass that was not disposed of correctly.

If you have suffered as a result of an accident in a bar, Quittance offer a free, no obligation consultation to discuss your options and advise you if you have a claim.

Call us on free phone 0800 612 7456 or complete an online form and we will call you back at a convenient time for you.

Following an accident how soon should a claim be started?

A person who has sustained an injury in an accident that was not their fault that took place within the last three years could be entitled to claim for personal injury compensation. Many claimants concentrate on treatment and recovery first prior to starting a personal injury claim, and a claim can commence whenever the claimant is ready until the three year period has elapsed.

Unless a settlement can be reached with the three years, and Court proceedings have not commenced, a claim for an accident becomes restricted from doing so, or 'statue-barred', meaning that an injured party is unable to make their compensation claim. By commencing a claim earlier, the claimant and their solicitor can negotiate a better settlement.

What is the position if there is uncertainty over who is to blame for a pub fall?

In order to assess if there is a valid legal claim the claimant and solicitor will be required to determine that the defendant was responsible or to blame and causation i.e. a breach of duty leading to actionable damage on the part of defendant.

Blame is not always clear cut - it may be that multiple parties share an apportioned liability for the incident, or that the injuries sustained resulted from the negligence of more than one party . Generally shared liability cases will be concluded on the basis of a proportion or ratio of the full pub fall compensation. For instance if it is estimated that the claimant is 75 percent responsible for the pub fall , then the claimant will get 75 percent of the total payout that would have been awarded if the defendant was entirely at fault .

Do I have a pub or bar injury claim?

You should be eligible to make a pub or bar injury claim if the injury happened:

  • within the last three years and,
  • another person was to blame.

Even if these two points don't apply to you, a claim may still be possible.

It costs nothing to find out - you can speak to one of our experts on 0800 612 7456.

A brief phone consultation will confirm whether you have a claim. We will not put you under any pressure to pursue a claim.

You can also find out if you have a claim with our Online Claim Checker.

What if it was a criminal incident?

If your Pub Or Bar Injury injury resulted from a criminal incident, you can pursue a claim via the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA). The CICA must receive your application within 2 years of the Incident Date.

Read more

What if a child was injured?

The 3 year rule does not apply to minors.

A claim can be pursued for anyone under the age of 18 by a parent, guardian or litigation friend. The injured child has up to the age of 21 to start a pub or bar injury claim on their own behalf.

Read more about claiming injury compensation on behalf of a child.

Check my claim online

How will compensation help you?

One of the purposes of compensation for personal injury is that it should try to put injured parties back in the position they would have been in had the accident or illness never occurred. With respect to providing to an injured person sufficient compensation financial compensation can only ever go so far.

Courts in England and Wales acknowledge that a pub fall can have a life-altering impact. Compensation may be awarded:

  • for any pain and suffering
  • to reimburse any medical expenses such as physiotherapy
  • to reimburse any other expenses or damage to personal property
  • to cover any loss of earnings including those anticipated in the future

How much compensation can I claim for a pub or bar injury?

The amount of money you could claim for your pub or bar injury will depend on:

  • the extent of your injury, and
  • any financial losses or costs you have incurred.

At the start of your claim, your solicitor will consider the many ways your pub or bar injury has affected your life. Your solicitor will take all of these effects into account to calculate the correct compensation award for you.

This calculation will factor in general damages and special damages.

General damages

General damages are awarded for pain, suffering and loss of amenity (PSLA).

Awards for general damages are set by the Judicial College and published in their guidelines for personal injury awards.

Special damages

Special damages are for financial losses and expenses you have incurred as a result of the accident.

See a list of what you can claim for:

Examples of special damages include:

  • Lost earnings (including future earnings)
  • Medical treatment costs
  • Physiotherapy
  • Travel costs
  • Costs of care
  • Costs of adapting your home or car

Find out what your claim could be worth now

Assessing a claim's value at the outset can be complicated.

If you would like a FREE claim estimate with no obligation to start a claim, call 0800 612 7456.

Alternatively, our compensation calculator will give you an instant estimate of what your claim is worth.

Calculate my injury claim

Caring and sensitive support

Your solicitor will handle your pub or bar injury case from the initial consultation through to the financial settlement. In addition, your solicitor will work with other specialists to help you with:

  • Financial support: interim payments while you are unable to work.
  • Advice: on personal injury trusts, tax and welfare benefits.
  • Coordination: with rehabilitation providers and therapists.
  • Access: to treatment and therapies not always available on the NHS.

How long will a pub accident compensation claim take?

Some injury claims are relatively straightforward where compensation is agreed without delay. Complex cases can take a longer amount of time to resolve. Certain factors can only prolong the claim - such as when the defendant alleges split liability.

As every case is different, it is very difficult to predict how much time will be needed to get to a settlement or award . Sometimes it can even benefit the claimant to hold out for a higher offer as this strategy can result in a larger award.

What is the chance of a claim being successful

The 3 tests involved in demonstrating liability in a personal injury claim are:

  1. duty of care
  2. breach of duty
  3. causation

Generally speaking, this means "Were the injuries caused by the defendant "

If it has been admitted by the defendant that they are at fault you likely have a very good chance of succeeding.

If liability is contested or only partly accepted it may be more difficult to win.

Several actions can be taken to help make a better claim. The below steps should be taken as soon as possible:

  • gather witness statements, including names and addresses
  • report the incident (e.g. in an accident book if injured at work)
  • if you have been injured in a public place such as a shop, report the accident to the owner, management or local authority

It is worth taking into account the above even in cases where months or years have passed.

How did your injury occur?

The claims process that your solicitor follows will vary, depending on how the injury occurred:

In a public place (e.g. supermarket, pavement)

If you have been injured in a public place, there are some key points you need to be aware of:

Public Place Claims - What you need to know

At work

If you are thinking of making a work accident or injury claim, there are some key points to be aware of:

Work Accident Claims - What you need to know

Other claim types

Find details on another type of claim:

See list of other claims

No win, no fee

Under a no win, no fee agreement, your solicitor agrees that you will have no legal fees to pay whatsoever if you do not winn your claim .

Our no win, no fee promise

Our no win, no fee guarantee means there is zero financial risk in making a pub or bar injury claim - even if you don't win your claim.

What do I pay if I win my pub or bar injury claim?

Your injury solicitor will receive a success fee which is deducted from your compensation, once your claim is settled. The solicitor's success fee can be up to 25%. Your solicitor will agree a success fee with you before you start your claim.

What do I pay if I do not win my pub or bar injury claim?

If your pub or bar injury claim is not successful then you won't have to pay your solicitor any fees.

Read more about No win, no fee

How can Quittance help?

Our highly experienced panel of solicitors have an excellent track record of winning injury claims. Your solicitor will fight for the best possible compensation settlement for you.

If you have any questions, or would like to start a No Win No Fee claim, we are open 8am to 9pm weekdays, 9am to 6pm on Saturday, and 9.30am to 5pm on Sunday.

Call us FREE 0800 612 7456 or arrange a callback:

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Pub Or Bar Injury FAQ's

Can I claim for someone else?

Yes. In certain circumstances, it is possible to claim compensation on behalf of another person in the capacity of a 'litigation friend'.

If an injured person is either too young or vulnerable, too injured or otherwise unable to claim on their own behalf, their litigation friend can handle the claim process on behalf of the injured person.

The litigation friend will be responsible for communicating with the solicitors, and for making decisions in respect of the claim.

Read more about claiming on behalf of another person.

Can I claim if I was partly responsible for an accident?

You may still be able to claim compensation even if you contributed to your accident or to your injuries.

However, if you were partly to blame (known as contributory negligence), your compensation may be reduced and it may be more difficult to prove liability.

Read more about claiming compensation if you were partly responsible for an accident.

How long will my claim take?

The length of time needed to secure compensation can vary considerably.

For example, straightforward car accident claims can settle in a matter of weeks, whereas complex medical negligence cases can take years.

Injury claims can also take longer if it is not clear who is responsible for your injury, or if liability is denied by the defendant.

Taken from average case times, this table sets out approximately how long personal injury claims take to settle:

Personal injury claim type

Estimated claim duration*

Road accident claims

4 to 9 months

Work accident claims

6 to 9 months

Medical negligence claims

12 to 36 months

Industrial disease claims

12 to 18 months

Public place or occupiers’ liability claims

6 to 9 months

MIB claims (uninsured drivers)

3 to 4 months**

CICA claims (criminal assault)

12 to 18 months**

*RTA and other claims processed through the Ministry of Justice portal can settle faster.
**Official Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) Government agency and Motor Insurers’ Bureau (MIB) figures.

Read more about how long personal injury claims take.

Will I have to go to court?

Highly unlikely. The vast majority of claims that are settled by Quittance’s solicitor panel are settled out of court.

Only a very small percentage (approx. 5%) of personal injury claims go to court. Generally, only very complex cases, or those where liability cannot be resolved, end up in court.

Cases that do ultimately go to court are held in front of a judge, not a jury.

Read more: Will my injury claim go to court and what if it does?

Will I have to go to a solicitor's office?

No. You will not need visit a solicitor's office. As with most professional services, it is no longer necessary to meet face to face with your solicitor. Personal injury claims are dealt with via email, post and telephone.

Should you need to have a medical, this will be arranged at a medical centre near you or at your GP's surgery.

Read more: Will I have to visit a solicitor's office?

Can I get an interim compensation payment?

If you suffer financial hardship as a result of an injury, you may be able to claim interim compensation payments.

An interim payment is a partial settlement of your claim which is paid before your claim is concluded. The amount you receive in interim payments would then be deducted from your final compensation settlement or award.

Read more about interim compensation payments.

Gaynor Haliday, Legal researcher

About the author

Gaynor Haliday is an experienced legal researcher and published author. She has had numerous articles published in the press and is a legal industry commentator.

Read more about this Quittance Legal Expert