How To Make Cosmetic Surgery Claims

If you have been harmed by negligent plastic surgery, you may wonder if you could be eligible to claim compensation. In this guide to cosmetic surgery claims, we begin by examining the eligibility criteria your case needs to meet in order to have a valid medical negligence claim. To help illustrate this, we look at examples of unnecessary harm patients could suffer if a cosmetic surgeon is negligent. Our guide also includes information on who could be liable for any injuries or illnesses that are the result of negligent cosmetic procedures. 

If you decide to claim compensation for medical negligence, you may like to know how much you could be awarded if your case has a positive outcome. We take a look at how cosmetic surgery compensation is calculated. To conclude this guide, we look at how a specialist cosmetic surgery solicitor can help you secure compensation on a No Win No Fee basis.

Contact our team today to find out more about how to sue a cosmetic surgeon for negligence. Our team are on hand seven days a week and can provide you with free impartial advice. Contact us via the methods below:

A woman blocking an injection with her hands following a nose surgery.

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When Are You Able To Make Cosmetic Surgery Claims?

When undergoing cosmetic surgery, or indeed any medical procedure, medical professionals owe patients a duty of care. This duty means that all medical treatment, including cosmetic procedures, must satisfy a minimum standard. It extends to surgeons and others on the surgical team, such as the anaesthetist and nurses involved in your care.

Medical negligence can occur if the surgical team fail to adhere to their duty causing a patient harm that was otherwise avoidable had the correct standard of care been delivered. You might be eligible to claim compensation if your operation has gone wrong or you suffered another form of avoidable harm as a result of the breach of duty.

So, in order to make a successful cosmetic surgery negligence claim, you need to prove that:

  • You were owed a duty of care by the party you are claiming against.
  • The surgeon or another member of the medical team failed to meet the expected service standards. In the case of surgeons, this is set by the Royal College of Surgeons Code of Conduct. For example, if your surgeon did not properly explain the risks associated with breast augmentation and you experienced bleeding that requires a further operation. 
  • This led to you being physically or psychologically harmed when you wouldn’t have been otherwise. 

Types Of Cosmetic Surgery

Cosmetic surgery claims could be made for any type of cosmetic surgery procedure (as long as the individual case meets the criteria discussed above). Some examples of common cosmetic procedures include: 

  • Breast augmentation
  • Laser eye surgery,
  • Brow or facelifts,
  • Liposuction, 
  • Rhinoplasty, 
  • Otoplasty,
  • Hair transplants or replacements,

No matter the type of cosmetic surgery you have undergone, if the procedure or aftercare was carried out negligently, you could have a valid claim. Our team are on hand to discuss your case.

Operating room with surgery in progress.

Is There A Time Limit For Claiming Cosmetic Surgery Compensation?

Your cosmetic surgery claim is subject to a limitation period or time limit. This means that typically, most medical negligence claims must be started within a three year period of either the incident taking place or of you being aware of the negligent treatment. This is set out in the Limitation Act 1980

However, there are exceptions to this general rule for those lacking the mental capacity to file a claim themselves and those who underwent negligent surgery before their 18th birthday. To find out more about time limits, speak to a member of our cosmetic surgery claims team.

What Are Examples Of Cosmetic Surgery Negligence?

There are various ways negligence could occur within the cosmetic surgery industry. Those who are involved in carrying out cosmetic procedures, including the surgical team and aftercare nurses, are expected to adhere to the same medical standards as any other healthcare professionals.

Circumstances which could be classed as medical negligence could include:

  • A surgical error, such as a foreign object being left in the patient. This is a never-event (it should never occur) and will likely require further surgery. 
  • A surgeon’s negligence could cause a scalpel error, which could leave scarring on the face or other parts of the body.
  • A breast augmentation surgeon uses breast implants that have not been approved by the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA – UK regulator)
  • Everyone involved with the cosmetic procedure is expected to maintain appropriate levels of hygiene. Additionally, all equipment should be sterilised to the correct standard. Failure to do so could result in a hospital-acquired infection. 

Contact an advisor today to learn more about circumstances which could be classed as negligent cosmetic surgery. Our team can also provide information on cosmetic surgery claims.

Who Would You Claim Against For Cosmetic Surgery Negligence?

We have a panel of expert medical negligence solicitors who could help with cosmetic surgery claims against the NHS or private clinics. No matter whether your cosmetic procedure was carried out by a private healthcare provider or the NHS, medical professionals must provide care to the correct standard. If they have failed to meet these standards and you suffered avoidable harm, you could be eligible to claim damages.

How To Claim Against Cosmetic Surgery Clinics? 

If your treatment was negligent, our team could help. A medical negligence solicitor from our panel can help you in many ways if you decide to appoint one. Among other things, they can gather the relevant evidence needed to prove your cosmetic surgery claim. Evidence is required to show the unnecessary harm you sustained and the liability for this harm. It may include:

  • Copies of your medical records, information on subsequent treatment and medications you have required.
  • Photographic evidence of your injuries (such as photos of excessive scarring).
  • Contact details of witnesses. Statements can be taken by the appropriate people during the claims process of anyone who witnessed the effect the negligent treatment had on your overall health.

To find out more about how we could help you, please contact us today.

Cosmetic surgery claims need supporting evidence, such as that kept in this notebook.

How Much Compensation For A Cosmetic Surgery Claim?

The settlements for successful cosmetic surgery claims may consist of up to two heads of loss (or parts): general and special damages.

General damages awards compensation for the physical pain and emotional suffering due to negligent treatment. Those responsible for assessing this part of your claim, such as your medical negligence solicitor or another legal professional, will use guidelines from the Judicial College to value how much should be claimed for pain and suffering. These guidelines (known as the JCG) include different types of injuries and illnesses. 

Below, we have included a table with examples of different injuries from the JCG 17th edition. The first entry does not come from the JCG and includes multiple injuries as well as compensation for financial losses. All figures are only a guide, and your settlement may differ due to the differences between claims. 

Type Of InjuryCategory Of InjuryCompensatory GuidelineNotes
Multiple Serious Injuries with Special DamagesMultiple and serious injuriesUp to £1,000,000+Compensation also includes special damages awarded for financial losses.
Injuries Affecting Sight(b) Total blindnessIn the region of £327,940Total loss of sight in both eyes.
Injuries Affecting Sight(C) (i )The loss vision in one eye and reduced sight in the other. £117,150 to £219,400The person has a serious risk of further sight loss in the remaining eye.
Psychiatric Damage GenerallySevere£66,920 to £141,240 The resulting injuries have caused a severe psychological reaction. This impacts every aspect of the claimants ability to cope with life. Their education or work and family life will all be affected.
Facial disfigurementScarring - very severe£36,340 to £118,790 Claimants will be aged 30 or under. They are left with severe psychological impacts and cosmetic disfigurement.
Facial disfigurementScarring - less severe£21,920 to £59,090The claimant has been left with both a serious psychological reaction and substantial level of disfigurement.
Digestive SystemTraumatic injury damage (i)£52,490 to £75,550The severe damage to the digestive system results in continuing pain and discomfort.
Skeletal InjuriesJaw fractures (ii)£21,920 to £37,210Permanent consequences, such as paraesthesia from a serious jaw fracture.
Skeletal InjuriesNose/Nasal complex fractures (i)£12,990 to £28,220 The claimant needs a number of operations and suffers with airway damage, breathing difficulty, damage to the nerves or tear ducts and facial deformity.
Skeletal InjuriesCheekbones fracture (i)£12,450 to £19,260Lasting consequences, such as an element of disfigurement and paraesthesia from serious fractures needing surgery.

Compensation For Financial Losses

In addition to general damages, you could also be awarded damages for the wider financial impact the surgical negligence has had on your life. These damages are referred to as special damages. 

The purpose of special damages in your cosmetic surgery claim is to reimburse you for costs and the overall impact on your finances. 

Examples of special damages which could be awarded include:

  • Compensation for loss of earnings. As a result of your injury you may have had to take time off work and have lost income. 
  • Medical expenses related to your injury. This could be to pay for corrective surgery, medications or psychological treatment to deal with the mental impact caused by negligent cosmetic surgery. 
  • The cost of travelling to and from appointments for medical treatment. 

You should save evidence of your losses as you may need to submit proof during the cosmetic surgery claims process. This could include invoices, bank statements and wage slips. 

Find out more about how much compensation for cosmetic surgery negligence you could claim by contacting our team.

How Long Does The Medical Negligence Claim Process Take?

Cosmetic surgery compensation claims are unique to that person, so the length of time each claim will take generally differs from case to case. 

Factors which could impact how long the cosmetic surgery claims process may take include:

  • How severe your injuries are. Cases with more severe complex injuries can take longer. An extended recovery period can also impact how long the claim takes. 
  • How much evidence you have to support your claim. The more evidence you have, the easier it may be to prove your case. 
  • Whether the defendant admits liability for your injuries or disputes your claim. If the defendant does dispute the case the process may take longer to complete. 

Get an assessment of your case by speaking to our team today.

Why Make A Cosmetic Surgery Claim On A No Win No Fee Basis?

Our panel of No Win No Fee solicitors have years of experience handling medical negligence claims, including cosmetic surgery cases. If, after assessing your case, we determine that you might be eligible to claim compensation, we can connect you to one of the cosmetic surgery solicitors from our panel.

Our panel generally offer a No Win No Fee service under a Conditional Fee Agreement. With such an agreement in place, you will not be asked to pay for your solicitor’s services prior to the start of the claim. You will also not be asked to pay for their services during the cosmetic surgery claims process nor in the event that your solicitor can not secure a compensation settlement for you.  

If your claim is successful, your solicitor will take a success fee from your awarded compensation. This fee is a legally capped percentage. This means that you will retain the majority of your settlement. 

Discover more about cosmetic surgery compensation by contacting our team. They can also assess your claim eligibility and connect you to a solicitor from our panel if you meet the criteria. To speak to a member of the medical negligence team:

A solicitor works on a No Win No Fee claim.

Read More About Cosmetic Surgery Claims

Here we have included resources from across our site as well as external resources.

Our resources:

  • In this guide you can find out more about how to prove medical negligence for your compensation claim.
  • Guidance on claiming compensation for negligent breast augmentation and eligibility requirements.
  • Sepsis is a serious and even life-threatening condition which can happen in rare instances after surgery. Find out more about claims for sepsis misdiagnosis in this guide. 

External references:

If you have any further questions about cosmetic surgery claims, please speak to a member of our advisory team.