Community Care Seminar on 8th March 2012

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BL Claims Solicitors specialise in personal injury, clinical negligence and travel claims, providing our clients with hands-on support, nationally.

We are rated as one of the top firms in the UK and believe in speaking to our clients in jargon-free language and ensuring you're speaking to a highly qualified lawyer right from the outset

Unfortunately, as a clinical negligence solicitor, my general experience is that liability for injury caused by negligent medical treatment is very often disputed until well into court proceedings. This means that my clients are often left, sometimes for many years where children are concerned, in a situation where they are dependent upon state help until their claim has been settled or decided by a court.

Outside of the litigation process, thousands of disabled individuals, who have no compensation claim to bring, are of course also dependent upon the state support available to them.

The tone of the course was fairly sombre, particularly in the current economic climate when the government is looking to make cuts to so many of the public services. It seems to be a sad fact that, in order to secure the care, education and housing that disabled people need and are entitled to by law, it is often necessary to pursue the complaint, Ombudsman or even legal route. 

We heard informative talks from a representative of Every Disabled Child Matters, experts in the fields of care, property adaptation and state benefits, as well as from leading lawyers specialising in this area of law. 

In terms of my own clinical negligence clients, I now feel better informed to ensure that my clients have an improved quality of life in respect of services that can and should be provided by the state, until their claim is settled or decided.

In terms of other disabled individuals, whilst I am confident that I am able to point them in the direction of professionals who can make sure that they have the care and quality of life, they are entitled to by law, it is a fact that the services of these professionals cost money, which many disabled people simply don't have. It was rather disheartening to hear just how much of an uphill struggle it can be for them to obtain the advice that they need, to enable them to receive their legal entitlement to care, accommodation and education.

Many thanks to AvMA for arranging such an informative seminar. It was certainly thought provoking, both in terms of the clients and families that I represent, and the much wider population.

Families with disabled children can contact for help and information about financial and statutory support available. Disabled adults and their families can visit their local Citizens Advice Bureau or local welfare benefits and money advice agency. Your local Council should be able to either give your this advice, or signpost you towards where this can be obtained from.

Kym Provan

Senior Solicitor - Clinical Negligence team

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