How long do I have to make a compensation claim after an injury?

8 questions have been answered on this subject - ask us your question

The rules for making a claim for personal injury compensation state that there is a period of 3 years from the date of an accident in which an injured party must register their claim. This time limit is called ‘limitation’. Should an injured party fail to register their claim within a 3 year time period, the claim will be statute barred and they will then be unable to seek compensation for their injuries.

An exception to this rule is for minors. A person under the age of 18 years at the time of their accident have until their 21st birthday in which they can register a claim. Another exception is for industrial diseases, where the limitation period is 3 years from the date of medical diagnosis. This is because industrial illnesses may take years to present. There are other very rare exceptions to the 3-year rule that may enable an individual to overturn the limitation limit. This would normally apply to individuals who were so seriously injured that they could not manage their own affairs and no carer commenced a claim for them.

In all circumstances, it is advisable to make a claim at the earliest opportunity and to not wait the full 3 years. This allows time to prepare a strong claim and therefore maximise the prospects of a successful outcome.

Whilst the 3-year period is there, in usual circumstances, claims companies and solicitors require a good 6-month period of the limitation to remain in order that full investigations can be completed, and correspondence can be entered into with the alleged liable party. Many people don’t know about the need to allow sufficient time to run their claim and often find that they have ruled themselves out by missing the 3-year deadline or contacting us with only a month or less to go. They usually find themselves statute barred and unable to claim.

Beating the claim deadline

Direct2Compensation never rule anything out and are happy to go the extra mile to assist clients in making genuine claims. Indeed, only this week we have managed to move mountains to assist a client who contacted us with only 4 days of his 3-year period remaining. In normal circumstances, this would not provide sufficient time to enable us to help. However, the injuries sustained were very serious – the client could yet lose the leg that was injured.

We immediately contacted one of our specialist solicitors to discuss the case. The value of the claim for the client was high and all parties wanted to help. Following the advice from our solicitor, we decided to take the unusual step of registering the claim in the courts before contact was made with the 3rd party. Clearly, we had to make speedy investigations beforehand to ensure that we knew the identity of the parties involved to ensure that we were not wasting our or the client’s time. Once done, we paid the fee and decided that this claim was worth risking our time, money and effort upon.

Taking risks and helping clients

We are happy to take such risks and put our money on the line to help such clients. Sure, if we win this no-win, no-fee claim for our client, we will get our money back plus fees, but that is not the point. We are a business with a keen ethical stance that ensures that we push the boat out to help individuals who are not always in a position to help themselves.

If you are in need of a reliable and approved claims management company to manage your accident compensation claim, look no further. We offer genuine peace of mind, honesty and a friendly caring service.

8 questions have been answered on this subject - ask us your question

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Comments & Questions

Read on for questions and advice about claiming...

I was diagnosed with sun damage on my head , i worked for the council for 25 years and have been finished 27 years is it to late to make a claim now?

Ian Morris

Not only are you probably outside of the limitation period to pursue a claim, but you would have great difficulty in establishing that the employer had been negligent.


I was injured as a 17 year old back in 2003 from an RTA, when I tried to make a claim (I don’t know who with, but the form got sent to me without asking for it). I got told at the time that it was partially my fault that I got injured and was not entitled to any compensation.
Long story short, I ended up on a car bonnet while trying to stop a drunk driver leaving a car park, and the driver hit a wall with me still on the bonnet. Lucky to survive, took a long time to fully recover physically and mentally, still have scaring. To be told this was my fault at the time didn’t sit well but at 17 I just accepted it, but is it too late to follow this up?
On a separate occasion in 2005 while I was 19, I was assaulted with a pint glass round the back of the head as I was walking home. The individual was caught and sentenced in court, I never received any compensation for this either despite being hospitalised and resulting in permanent scaring, again would this be too late to follow this up?

Ian Morris

Unfortunately, you are unable to do anything about these incidents in terms of claims due to the time that has lapsed between the incidents and today. Personal injury claims must be made within 3 years of the date of an accident (or before the 21st birthday for anyone under the age of 18 at the time of an accident/injury) and criminal injury assault claims have a 2 year limitation period.



If I had an accident in August 2018 would my right to make a claim run out in August 2020 or 2021?


Ian Morris

You have 3 years from the date of the accident to pursue your claim. Therefore, the example you give would see your 3 year period expire in August 2021.

If you would like help to make your claim, please call us on 01225430285.


I crushed and injured my toe at an old employer (woolworths). This was over 10 years ago. They did cover my doctors bills at the time but I was also starting a job with a new company and at the time I didn’t want to “look bad” to my new employee so I just “soldiered on”.

The toe has permanent damage and still causes me a lot of pain and limits somethings I do in my life today.
Is the case too old to follow up?

Thank you.

Ian Morris

Sadly, your right to make a claim for personal injury compensation for the accident you had at work some 10 years ago is no longer available to you. You needed to have acted upon your claim within 3 years of the date of your injury and as 10 years have passed, you are sadly 7 years out of limitation.

Chat with us for friendly, expert advice 01225 430285