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Thorneycroft News for April 2013


11th April 2013

FAQ’s on Funding of litigation

  • “Why am I having to lose up to a quarter of my damages”

    • The insurance industry persuaded the Government that successful Claimants should have to pay their own success fees when instructing solicitors on a no win no fee basis, capped at 25% of damages. We on the Claimant side lobbied hard against these proposals, believing that the losing insurers should continue to pay the success fee themselves, but the Government ignored our arguments and the applicable change to the law came into effect from April 1st 2013. What this means in practical terms is that, as your success fee and unrecovered base costs will almost always exceed 25% of damages, then this is the amount that will have to be deducted from recovered damages to go towards your legal fees at the successful conclusion of your case.
  • “The Insurers seem to be doing very well from the rule changes, do they contain any good news for me as an innocent claimant?”

    • General damages for Personal Injury are being increased by 10% to offset the loss to you. You are still able to instruct an experienced Personal Injury specialist litigator from our firm to fight the insurers upon your behalf, and advise you upon the appropriate level of settlement, as well as paying upon your behalf for the disbursements that you will inevitably incur when pursuing your claim, such as Medical report and Court fees.
  • “Do I have to pay any legal costs if I lose, and can I take out insurance against that risk”

    • If you instruct us on a no win no fee agreement then as long as you follow our advice and don’t mislead or misinform us, you don’t have to pay anything towards our own fees if you lose the case at trial. You can be held liable for the other side’s legal fees however, up to a maximum of the level of damages you are awarded (which would leave you with nothing) if you refuse an offer in settlement of your claim, and that offer is the same as or more than the sum ultimately  allowed by the judge at court. We strongly recommend that you take out ATE (After The Event) legal expense insurance against this risk, in the event that you don’t already have full legal expense cover. The premiums tend to be reasonable if taken out at the point of instruction and are deferred to the conclusion of your claim, so there’s no payment up front just a deduction from your damages.
  • “Are there alternative methods of funding my claim?”

    • If you do not have full legal expenses cover in place already then we would always prefer to act for you on a conditional fee basis. Other firms may offer different funding arrangements but this is our standard approach for all our clients as it allows us to provide you with a consistent high standard of service.


FAQ’s on After the event insurance

  • “Why do I need ATE insurance?”

    • You need ATE insurance to pay for disbursements and the other side’s costs in the event that your claim fails.
  • “Don’t I benefit from QOCS protection?”

    • You will benefit from QOCS protection providing the third party are prepared to accept that they are responsible for your injury. However, even if they do accept they are responsible, they may not accept that your injuries are as severe as you say they are. If they don’t they will not settle the case and so we will need to go trial to prove your claim. If this happens the judge will need to make a decision and you could lose your case. You may lose the QOCS protection meaning that you will need to pay for the other sides costs.

      QOCS protection doesn’t apply if there is dispute over the costs of repairs to your vehicle or credit car hire, so should we need to go to court to recover the costs, should we lose, the ATE policy will cover the costs of the other side.

  • “What will happen if the other side make an offer and it’s not acceptable?”

    • We will do all we can to maximise damages and this may mean that we need to go to court. If we beat their offer then it’s not a problem, but if we don’t you will be liable for the other sides costs up to the amount of their offer, meaning that you could end up with nothing, unless you have ATE insurance that will pay the other sides costs.
  • “Am I still liable for the ATE premium if my case is lost or if you decide to drop the case at some stage because you don’t think I have a reasonable case?”

    • You only pay the premium if your case is successful, but the insurance will still cover all the costs if your case is lost or we decide that your case no longer has reasonable prospects of succeeding.
  • “My claim is for clinical negligence, so isn’t the premium recoverable from the other side?”

    • Only partly. The policy covers your disbursements and the other sides costs, but the only part that’s recoverable from the other side is the element that relates to your disbursements. The part of the premium that that pays for the other sides costs in your case is lost will be deducted from your damages at the conclusion of your case and providing it is successful.

East Cheshire Hospice Firewalk

30th April 2013

East Cheshire Hospice Firewalk took place last friday, Thorneycrofts team raised over a thousand pounds. More details to follow shortly.

Invitation to the Alderley Edge launch of the Macclesfield & Wilmslow Business Awards 2013

24th April 2013

Details of the Alderley Edge launch of the Macclesfield & Wilmslow Business Awards 2013 are now confirmed and we are delighted to invite local businesses to attend and find out more about this great local initiative.

The event will take place at The Yard in Alderley Edge on Thursday 16th May 2013 between 6.00pm until 8.00pm.

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East Cheshire Hospice firewalk challenge

12th April 2013


East Cheshire Hospice is a cause we support regularly within the Macclesfield community in order to help them raise the £6,000 required every single day to simply keep going.

Rachel Stow, managing director and her PA Gail Wilson will be taking part in their latest challenge, the firewalk, on Friday 26th April at East Cheshire Hospice, where they will walk across 15ft of red hot embers in aid of this very important charity.

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Thorneycroft Solicitors sponsor Macclesfield & Wilmslow Business Awards launch event

5th April 2013

To promote the event and encourage entries from businesses based in and around Alderley Edge, Thorneycroft Solicitors are delighted to announce that they are to sponsor an additional Macclesfield & Wilmslow Business Awards launch event at The Yard in Alderley Edge.  It will take place at 6pm on Thursday 16th May 2013.

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Teacher awarded £70,000 compensation for unfair dismissal

24th April 2013

A teacher has successfully claimed a substantial amount of employment compensation after a court ruled that she had been unfairly dismissed from a secure unit for problem youngsters.

The Tribunal was told that she was accused of breaking rules over disciplining a youngster, having poor relationships with colleagues and breaking health and safety rules.

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£7,000 out-of-court settlement in dental negligence case

22nd April 2013

A woman has received £7,000 dental negligence compensation in an out-of-court settlement against her dentist, with her case of misaligned teeth called the “most severe” ever seen by a specialist. The patient took legal action against her dentist after he failed to refer her for corrective orthodontic treatment and to address her gum disease.

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Man wins brain injury compensation after pothole fall

2nd April 2013

An Australian man has won compensation following a fall caused by a pothole that caused him serious brain damage.

The victim was on his way home from a friend’s house when he tripped into a pothole and fell heavily causing him to require brain surgery.

The man’s claim for brain injury compensation was settled at the High Court after years of litigation and he is to receive damages from a housing group who has been held responsible.

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