Animal-Caused Road Accident Injury Compensation Claims

If your life, or the life of a loved one, has been affected by a road accident we can help.

The purpose of this guide is to help anyone who has suffered a road accident and is considering a legal claim for compensation. If you are looking for medical advice, please see the NHS website.

In our guide to claiming animal-caused road accident injury compensation:

Introduction

Livestock loose on Britain's roads account for around 1,000 road traffic accidents every year. Given the size of larger livestock, including cows and horses, these accidents have the potential to cause serious injury.

Livestock on road

Livestock on the road

Despite vigilance on the part of farmers, animals can escape their enclosures and wander into nearby roads. In cases where the farmer has failed to repair a broken gate or fence, the farmer is likely to be negligent and liable to pay compensation to road users injured as a result.

In some cases, however, loose livestock can be caused by a gate being left open. This could be a failure on the part of a farm worker or an unknown party, such as an anonymous rambler. This can, in some cases, make negligence more difficult to prove.

Typical injuries resulting from livestock on the road

One of the most common injuries sustained by drivers and passengers involved in a collision with livestock is whiplash.

Other common injuries include muscular damage, bruising and sprained or broken limbs caused by the impact of hitting a cow or horse, or by hitting a tree, fence or other vehicle while attempting to avoid the animal.

Who is liable for accidents involving livestock?

In many cases, the farmer who is responsible for the livestock will be held accountable for any road accidents that the animals cause.

Most farmers protect themselves from the financial consequences of paying injury compensation by taking out public liability insurance.This insurance is designed to cover the costs of any accidents caused by the animals owned by the farmer, or by any work undertaken by the farmer in the course of his normal duties.

What to do following an injury

Medical attention should be sought as soon as possible, even for minor injury, to prevent deterioration.

It may be that you will need a physical examination by a doctor to ascertain the extent of your injuries, or you may require x-rays or other follow-up examinations.

Whiplash can develop into chronic pain if not treated appropriately, but compensation cannot be sought for this kind of subsequent injury if it results from a failure to seek treatment.

Evidence of the cause of livestock on the road

Broken fences and gates may be subsequently repaired, so it is recommended to act quickly after an accident to gather evidence, including photos.

A solicitor will able to advise further on this point, even if you are undecided about actually starting a claim.

Do I have an animal-caused road accident injury claim?

It should be possible to make an animal-caused road accident injury claim if your injury happened:

  • in the last three years, and;
  • someone else was at fault, and;
  • that person owed you a duty of care.
Check my claim

Do I have a claim? - Common questions

What if the road accident was my fault?

If you think you were partly responsible for the road accident or for your injury, it should still be possible to make a claim.

In these cases, claims are usually settled with a split liability agreement.

For example, if you were 50% responsible for your injuries, you would receive 50% less compensation.

Read more about when there is uncertainty as to who is to blame.

What if the driver was uninsured or untraceable?

If the driver responsible for the injury is either uninsured or untraceable, a claim can be pursued through the Motor Insurers' Bureau (MIB).

The MIB is an independent body that pays road accident compensation to the victims of uninsured or untraced (unidentified) drivers.

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 an animal-caused road accident injury claim on their own behalf.

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

Can I claim if the animal-caused road accident injury made an existing injury worse?

Yes, although demonstrating this can be more difficult than proving a straightforward animal-caused road accident injury injury, so legal and medical advice should be sought as early as possible.

What if I want to make a multi-party or group claim?

A multi-party claim (sometimes referred to as a 'group claim' or a 'class action') brought by a group of people who have sustained the same or similar injuries due to the negligence of the same defendant. How you start a multi-party claim will depend on the circumstances and we recommend you speak to a solicitor for more information.

How much compensation can I claim for an animal-caused road accident injury?

The amount of money you could claim for your animal-caused road accident 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 animal-caused road accident 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.

What can I claim for after an animal-caused road accident injury? (see list)

Examples of special damages (losses you can claim for) include:

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

How is compensation calculated if I have multiple injuries?

If you have sustained multiple injuries, the compensation amounts are not simply added together.

The upper bracket of the most serious injury may be considered as a starting point, with a reduced amount applied for the other less severe injuries.

For example:

General damages for a serious neck injury can be £52,000

For a less severe ankle injury, in isolation, you would typically receive £8,000.

However, if you have a serious neck injury and a less severe ankle injury, you would typically receive £52,000 + a reduced percentage of £8,000.

Special damages, such as loss of earnings are not usually increased if you have multiple injuries. Read more about multiple injury claims.

What is the average injury compensation for an animal-caused road accident 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 animal-caused road accident injury will depend entirely on your specific circumstances.

Your animal-caused road accident injury compensation will be calculated based on the unique impact your injuries have had on your life, your ability to work, and the actual financial losses you have incurred as a result of your injuries.

Can I see the complete judicial college tables?

The table above (excerpted from the Judicial College Tables) shows the most common animal-caused road accident injury claims. To see the complete list see: Judicial College Injury Tables.

Will I have to pay tax on my animal-caused road accident injury compensation?

If you receive financial compensation following an animal-caused road accident injury injury, specific legislation ensures that you do not have to pay tax on it. This is the case no matter whether the compensation is received as a lump sum or as staggered payments.

Animal-caused road accident injury compensation

Calculating how much compensation you can claim for an animal-caused road accident 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 animal-caused road accident injury claim could be worth now:

Calculate compensation

How long does a road injury claim take?

The length of time needed to win compensation for a road accident can vary considerably.

For example, a simple liability accepted road accident claim could be settled in a month or two. However, if liability is denied it could take longer. Typically, a road accident claim should take 4 to 9 months. For more information, see: How long will my claim take?

Caring and sensitive support

Your solicitor will handle your animal-caused road accident injury claim 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.

No win, no fee

Under a no win, no fee agreement (known as a 'Conditional Fee Agreement' or 'CFA') you can make an animal-caused road accident injury claim without having to pay upfront legal fees. If your animal-caused road accident injury claim is unsuccessful you won't have to pay any money to your solicitor.

Our no win, no fee promise

Our no win, no fee guarantee means there is absolutely no financial risk in making an animal-caused road accident 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 animal-caused road accident 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 animal-caused road accident injury claim?

If your animal-caused road accident injury claim is not successful then you will not have to pay any fees. Your solicitor may take out insurance to ensure there will be nothing to pay.

Is there a catch?

The Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA) sets out the terms between you and your solicitor., No Win No Fee is a regulated activity and as such there should be no nasty surprises in the agreement. Nevertheless, it is recommended that you read the agreement carefully and ask any questions if you are unsure.

How can Quittance help?

Your solicitor will fight for the best possible compensation settlement for you, the highly-experienced panel of solicitors have an excellent track record of winning road accident 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, and 9.30am to 5pm on Sunday.

Call us FREE 0800 612 7456 or arrange a callback:

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Animal-caused road accident 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 do I have to make an animal-caused road accident injury claim?

In general, you have a time limit of up to 3 years from the date of the animal-caused road accident injury to make an injury claim.

The last date you can make a claim is known as the claim limitation date - after which your animal-caused road accident injury claim becomes 'statute barred'.

Can I claim for an animal-caused road accident 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 612 7456 to find out if you are still able to claim animal-caused road accident injury compensation.

In reality, there are a number of factors that can affect whether a car accident claim will be taken on by a solicitor.

Calculate your claim limitation date

Will I have to go to court?

Highly unlikely. The vast majority of claims that are settled by the 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 early compensation payment?

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

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.

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.

Read more about this Quittance Legal Expert