If you are making a claim for a personal injury you have sustained in a road traffic accident, it is important to be aware that you can claim compensation for assistance provided to you by a family member as a result of your injury. This is known as a claim for “services”.
Services provided can take the form of a number of everyday tasks that you may be unable to carry out without help because of your injury. Common examples are getting washed and dressed, preparing meals, housework, food shopping and driving to appointments.
This type of claim can only be made if the injured person has received help and assistance from a family member. For instance, if help and assistance has been provided by a friend or neighbour then it cannot be included.
Under the Administration of Justice Act 1982 it is possible to make a claim for two different types of services:
Help that you have received from others (S8)
S8 of the Administration of Justice Act 1982 allows the injured person to claim for help and assistance they have received from family members from the date of the accident until such a point that help and assistance is no longer deemed to be necessary. This includes washing, dressing and assistance with driving, housework, cooking or shopping.
Services claims are usually assessed using an hourly rate. It is therefore helpful if the amount of help and assistance that a person has received can be broken down into how much help they have received per week in hours and for how long. If the services were provided for a relatively short period of time then quite often the Court will apply a broad brush approach and make an award usually in the region of a few hundred pounds.
Help you would have provided to others
A claim for help that you would have provided to others can be made under Section 9 of the Administration of Justice Act 1982.
A claim under Section 9 means that the injured person is able to claim for the value of services that he or she would have provided to a family member had the accident not occurred. Typical examples under this section are DIY, decorating and gardening.
It is important to note that a family member cannot claim for the help and assistance that they provided to an injured person on their own. It must be included as part of the injured person’s case.
If you have been injured in a road traffic accident and are being provided by this kind of assistance by family members, it can be beneficial to keep a record of who has provided you with assistance, the length of the period during which they assisted you, what tasks they assisted you with, and how long roughly they spent carrying out each of these tasks.
If you have been injured in a road traffic accident, it is important to seek specialist advice to ensure that all heads of claim available to you, including a services claim, are accounted for. Our specialist personal injury team can be contacted on 0333 060 5725.