Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS) is a terrible, debilitating and life-changing condition. Until relatively recently, awareness of CRPS, even within the medical profession was woeful.
BLB Solicitors were the first dedicated CRPS compensation claim lawyers in the UK. We understand CRPS and the fundamental importance of protecting you and your family financially for the future. We have a proven track record of recovering the maximum compensation for CRPS, very often high six figure and seven figure awards. Nothing can compensate you for the torment of CRPS, but removing the financial burden can at least remove a major worry.
So far we have recovered over £53 million pounds in compensation for people suffering CRPS.
“It’s difficult to believe it’s over! My union solicitors were an utter joke but you’ve been unbelievable from start to finish. I’m so pleased I finally plucked up the courage to call you.” TW (£535,000 compensation recovered for CRPS), March 2018
Damages for pain, suffering and loss of amenity
In the UK, as with other types of injury and medical condition, judges have fixed the range of compensation available for the pain and suffering of CRPS, including its affect on your quality and enjoyment of life. Compensation for the actual pain and suffering of CRPS are woefully low; up to a maximum of about £80,000.
However, the largest part of your compensation award for CRPS will be your financial losses, which are divided into your ‘past loss’ (ie losses to the date that the claim settles) and your ‘future loss’. Every claim is different, but common types of claim are set out below.
Past Loss (also known as Special Damages)
Loss of earnings
Many people with CRPS will be unable to work or will have had to reduce their hours or find a new job entirely. As part of your CRPS compensation claim you are entitled to claim your net loss of earning (ie your take home pay, not including income tax and National Insurance).
If you are self-employed or part of your income comes from bonuses or overtime, then the calculation may not be as straightforward and a degree of estimation may be required. Perhaps the calculation can be done by comparison with a work colleague. Often with self-employed claimants, your CRPS compensation lawyer will instruct an expert forensic accountant to calculate and project the figures for loss of earnings.
Loss of pension
In our experience, this is often overlooked by solicitors. As a matter of law, most employers must contribute to your pension. If you cannot work, you are losing out of valuable pension contributions. These should be included in your CRPS compensation claim.
“Following an accident at work I received a foot injury which left me with a condition called CRPS. The solicitors firm I had initially were beyond bad. The best thing I ever did was to speak to Andrew Atkinson at BLB. Not only is a really caring person, he really understands CRPS and helped to get me some private treatment that I know I would never have got on the NHS. I can’t thank him enough.” PB (£465,000 compensation recovered for CRPS), May 2018
It almost goes without saying that you should include in your CRPS compensation claim any treatment costs which have not already been paid by the other side. Typically, these may include the cost of physiotherapy, occupational therapy, cognitive behavioural therapy, nerve blocks, spinal cord stimulation/dorsal root ganglion stimulation and residential pain management programmes.
In many cases, at the beginning of your CRPS compensation claim, we will arrange a case manager, who is typically an independent nurse or occupational therapist, to advise and help you with issues such as adaptations to your home, specialist disability aids and equipment and even treatment.
The cost of the case manager should either be paid direct by the other side or form part of your CRPS compensation claim.
“Thank you so much for everything. I couldn’t have hoped for a nicer, kinder and more understanding solicitor. Your confidence is infectious!” JW (£322,000 compensation recovered for CRPS), March 2018
The cost of care
Most people require some form of care and/or assistance. This can include domestic cleaning, gardening and cooking, as well as help with bathing, dressing and personal care. Sometimes you will have paid for this care and assistance. More often it is provided by your family and friends.
Clearly, you will not have paid your partner or child to cook or clean for you, but if these and other activities are ones that, in the absence of the accident, you would have otherwise have contributed to or done for yourself, the law allows you to recover payment on their behalf as part of your CRPS compensation claim.
Adaptations, aids and equipment
Typical adaptation can include ramps and widened doorways to improve access, stairlifts, larger or easier access baths and showers and modified height work surfaces.
There are numerous disability aids and equipment which can make living with CRPS just that much easier. Some are inexpensive; some very expensive. Common ones we have claimed are Smart Crutches, Loopwheels for wheelchairs, perching stools, specialist beds and chairs, grab rails, disability scooters, rough terrain scooters and driver-adaptations for cars. These should all be included in your claim by your CRPS compensation claim lawyer.
Your CRPS compensation solicitor will advise you on your entitlement to interest on your damages.
“Thank you. This money is literally lifechanging, I can’t even begin to tell you what it means to me and my family.” AD (£1.1 million compensation recovered for CRPS), August 2018
Future losses are those that you will incur after your claim settles. This is where the law attempts to use a crystal ball to ascertain what is likely to happen in the future, as compared to what would most likely have happened if you had not been injured. In almost every case, your future losses will form by far and away the largest part of your CRPS compensation claim.
Your future losses are likely to be a continuation of your past losses plus, depending upon your circumstances, a few other heads of claim. In broad terms, the calculation will usually be the annual loss/cost of each item, projected forward to a certain point in time. This will normally be the term of your average life expectancy or nominal date of retirement, depending upon the type of loss. These calculations are inevitably lengthy and complicated and this is another reason why you should only instruct a specialist CRPS compensation claim lawyer.
Typically, your CRPS compensation claim for future loss will include (but is not limited to):
- Loss of earnings – including loss of chance of promotion and career progression;
- Loss of pension;
- The cost of future treatment;
- The cost of care, including gardening, DIY and decorating;
- Case management;
- Adaptations, disability aids and equipment;
- Child care;
- Dog walking;
- Additional cost of holidays – going on holiday will no longer be as straightforward as before you developed CRPS. Not only will your choice of holiday be far more restricted, but the cost is likely to be greater. You will need a larger hotel room to help you mobilise, assistance will be required with luggage, a business class seat on your flight will provide you with additional elbow and leg room – the list goes on. These should be investigated by your CRPS compensation lawyer and included in your claim.
“Andrew, I feel so lucky to have found you. What a difference you made! Let’s face it, with [previous solicitors] the claim was heading for the rocks. Thank you so much.” TR (£430,000 compensation recovered for CRPS), October 2018
How much CRPS Compensation might you receive?
Unfortunately, this is not easy to answer until all of the evidence is available. However, as a result of the devastating effect that CRPS has on every aspect of your life, total compensation amounts are usually high, typically into high six figures or seven figures.
Compensation amounts for CRPS do vary from person to person, often considerably. This is for a host of reasons – no two people are the same. Some will, for example, have had a better response to treatment, or will require less help than others, or will be able to continue working. All of these issues can and will affect the amount of compensation recoverable. However, a specialist CRPS compensation claim lawyer will work hard to recover the maximum amount to protect you and your family financially for the future.
How long does the CRPS compensation process take?
Almost all of our clients begin their CRPS compensation claims with non-specialist law firms; usually the large factory-type law firms who advertise in the media. Unfortunately, not only can their lack of knowledge and understanding and general poor standards cause damage to your claim, but their corner-cutting can actually delay the time to settlement. This is because when we take over your claim there is inevitably a lot of work for us to do initially in order to put right all of the errors they have made and to get the claim back on track.
Of course, as we have said above, every claim is different and that affects and determines the amount of evidence that is required in each individual case before we can advise you accurately on the value of your claim. Avoid any solicitor who claims to be able to value your claim accurately at the outset. This is impossible and is a clear demonstration that they are not a specialist CRPS compensation claim solicitor.
Another factor relevant to time is that some defendant insurance companies will throw every possible obstacle in your path in an attempt to undermine you and your claim and delay settlement. We are experts at anticipating and navigating around these obstacles, but this all affects the time to settlement.
In simple terms, we settle claims as quickly as is possible without cutting corners and never losing sight of the overriding importance of maximising the amount of CRPS compensation that you need to protect you and your family for the future. In the meantime, we always do our best to keep you afloat financially with interim payments.
“What a relief it was to find you! My last solicitors didn’t have a clue what they were talking about and I really don’t think they even believed me. I just got the feeling that they wanted the my claim settled as soon as possible, whatever the implications for me.” JK (£420,000 compensation recovered for CRPS), June 2018
We are leading specialist CRPS Solicitors. If you believe that your current solicitor lacks a thorough understanding of CRPS, or are otherwise unhappy with the conduct of your claim, please do not hesitate to contact us on 01225 462871 or complete the Contact Form at the bottom of the page. You will speak direct to one of our specialist CRPS Solicitors and all calls are treated in the strictest confidence. Many clients say that picking up the phone to us was the best decision they ever made.