Injury on a Night Out Compensation Claims
If your life, or the life of a loved one, has been affected by an injury, we can help.
Whether your injuries were caused by a slip, trip, fall or other incident, you may be entitled to claim compensation.
Claiming injury compensation with a solicitor
You can make a compensation claim for an accident in a public place with the help and support of a personal injury solicitor.
Your solicitor will ask you about how the accident happened, and they will collect evidence to prove what caused your injuries. Your solicitor will then identify who is legally responsible. Based on your injuries, lost earnings and other expenses they will also work out how much money you can claim.
Owners or occupiers of business premises should have insurance to cover the cost of injury claims, and your compensation will be paid out of this policy.
We can help you make an injury claim, on a No Win No Fee basis.
In this article
NHS statistics show that A&E admissions are measurably higher during the early hours of Saturday and Sunday morning. Injuries are often alcohol-related and may be the result of a criminal act. However, accidents can also occur due to negligence. If you are injured on a night out due to the actions or negligence of a bar or club, road user, or other party, you may be able to make a personal injury claim.
Liability for accidents on a night out
Under the Occupier's Liability Act, any person who occupies a premises such as a bar or restaurant could be held liable in an occupiers liability compensation claim when a visitor is injured. The liability extends to both the venue itself and any adjoining garden or car park.
Owners and occupiers of premises have a legal duty of care' towards their visitors. This means the occupier must do everything reasonably practical to keep visitors safe. Regular risk assessments should be carried out and adequate health and safety measures must be in place. If the owner or occupier fails to fulfil this duty, and a person is injured on a night out as a result, a claim is likely to succeed.
Can you claim if you were drunk?
A claim can often be made even if the injured person was drunk. This is often a factor in pub and bar injury claims.Premises must be suitable for their intended use and for intended users, which covers a wide range of considerations such as suitable barriers and handrails on raised platforms and stairs, and regular checks for spills on dance floors and in bathrooms.
If it is found that the drunk individual was partly responsible for their injuries, a spilt-liability claim may be made. The applicability of this route will depend on the facts of the case.
Some of the most frequent types of accident on a night out are slips, trips and falls. Common hazards which result in these include:
- Drink and food spillages
- Poor lighting
- Obstructions on the floor and stairs
These can result in a range of injures from sprains and bruises to broken bones and back problems. Other common injury claims include those for:
- Lacerations from broken glass
- Burns from hot plates
- Gastrointestinal illness (including food poisoning)
Do I have an injury claim?
AN injury claim should be possible if your injury occurred:
- in the last 3 years, and;
- someone else was at fault, and;
- that person owed you a duty of care.
Injury claim eligibility - Common questions
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 an injury claim on their own behalf.
Can I make an injury on a night out claim right up to the three-year limit?
Technically, yes. However, in practice, not always. Many solicitors will not take on an injury on a night out claim that only has a few months (sometimes even a year) left before the time limit expires. The panel of solicitors will take a claim on as late as possible where it is felt that the claim could be successful.
Gathering evidence to support a claim
Evidence could include medical records, accident book reports, witness statements, photographs of the scene and injuries, and CCTV footage. Your solicitor will advise on what evidence would be useful in your case.
If negligence is proved and liability accepted, the owner or other responsible party should have insurance in place to cover compensation costs. If alcohol or other reckless behaviour was involved, the liable party may seek to prove contributory negligence, which may reduce the final sum.
Criminal injury on a night out
If an individual has been assaulted on a night out, or otherwise injured as the result of criminal activity, the injured person can make a claim compensation through the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA). It is possible to pursue a claim with the CICA even if the identity of the assailant is unknown.
The amount of money you could claim for your injury will depend on:
- the seriousness 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 injuries have affected your life. Your solicitor will take these considerations into account to calculate the correct compensation award.
This calculation will factor in 'general damages' and 'special 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 are for financial losses and expenses you have incurred as a result of the accident.
What can I claim for after an injury? (see list)
Examples of special damages (losses you can claim for) include:
- Lost earnings (including future earnings)
- Medical treatment costs
- Travel costs
- Costs of care
- Costs of adapting your home or car
What is the average injury compensation for an injury claim?
The Judicial College injury tables give a approximate idea of the ranges awarded for different injuries.
However, the money you would receive following an injury will depend entirely on your specific circumstances.
Your injury compensation will be calculated based on the unique impact your injuries have had on your life and your ability to work, and on the actual financial losses you have incurred as a result of your injuries.
Should I set up a personal injury trust?
If you are receiving means-tested benefits and are awarded compensation following an injury on a night out injury, your benefits could be affected. In order to ring fence your compensation and protecting your benefits, you may be able to set up a "Personal Injury Trust" or "PI Trust". Read more: Should I set up a personal injury trust?
Calculate my injury compensation
Calculating how much compensation you can claim for an injury can be complicated.
Our injury compensation calculator tells you if you may have a claim, how much compensation you could claim, and what you can claim for.
Find out what your injury claim could be worth now:
How long does a personal injury claim take?
How long it can take to get compensation for an injury on a night out can vary considerably.
A straightforward uncontested occupiers liability claim could be settled in a couple of months. If the negligent person or company denies liability, the process might take significantly longer. Usually, an occupiers liability claim takes between 6 and 9 months. For more information on how long your claim could take, see: How long will my claim take?
How else can a solicitor help me?
Your solicitor will handle your injury claim from the initial FREE case evaluation, through to the financial settlement.
Your solicitor will work with other specialists to provide caring and sensitive support and 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.
Will I have to go to court?
Highly unlikely. Solicitors settle the vast majority of claims out of court.
Less than 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 decided by a judge or magistrate, not a jury.
Even if the claim does go to court, it is very unlikely you will have to attend.
How does no win, no fee work?
Under a no win, no fee agreement, your solicitor agrees that you will have no legal fees to pay if you do not winn your claim .
Our no win, no fee guarantee
Our no win, no fee guarantee means there is no financial risk in making an injury claim - even if you don't win your claim. Read more about making a No win, no fee claim
What do I pay if I win my injury claim?
Your injury solicitor will receive a success fee which is deducted from your compensation, after your claim is settled. The solicitor's success fee can be up to 25%. You and your solicitor can agree the success fee before you start your claim.
What do I pay if I do not win my injury claim?
If your injury claim is not successful then you do not have to pay any legal fees at all. Your solicitor may take out insurance to ensure there will be nothing to pay.
Is there a penalty if I withdraw?
Under a No Win, No Fee Agreement (CFA), fees may apply if a claimant refuses to cooperate, or abandons their claim after the legal work has started, or if the claim is fraudulent.
How we can help you
Your solicitor will fight for the best possible compensation settlement for you, and the highly-experienced panel of solicitors have an excellent track record of winning injury claims.
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
- 9.30am to 5pm on Sunday
Call us for FREE advice on 0800 376 1001, or arrange a call back from a friendly, legally-trained advisor:
- Find out
if you can claim
- No obligation
to start a claim
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.
Can I claim if I feel I was partly responsible for my accident?
Yes. You may still be able to claim compensation even if your actions may have contributed to the accident.
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.
How long do I have to make an injury claim?
In general, you have a time limit of up to 3 years from the date of the injury to make an injury claim.
The last date you can make a claim is known as the claim limitation date - after which your injury claim becomes 'statute barred'.
Can I claim for an injury after 3 years?
Possibly. The general rule for adults is that a claim must be started within three years.
However, the three-year countdown starts on the day you learned of your injury or illness. This will usually be the date of the accident, but could be the date your doctor gave you a diagnosis.
If you were injured as a child, you do have up until your 21st birthday to make a claim.
There other circumstances that can also impact the limitation date. Call us now on 0800 376 1001 to find out if you are still able to claim injury compensation.
In reality, there are a number of factors that can affect whether an injury claim will be taken on by a solicitor.
Will I have to visit a solicitor's office to start a claim?
No. You will not need visit a solicitor's office. Personal injury claims are handled by email, post and phone.
Should you need to have a medical, this will be arranged at a medical centre near you or at your GP's surgery.
I need the money now - what are my options?
If you are unable to work and have bills to pay, you may be able to claim an interim compensation payment.
An interim payment is an advance on your compensation payment. Any amount you receive in interim payments would be deducted from your final compensation payment.
Howard Willis, Personal injury solicitor
About the author
Howard qualified as a solicitor in 1984 and has specialised in personal injury for over 25 years. He is a member of the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL) and is a recognised Law Society Personal Injury Panel expert.