Learn About Public Liability Claims Against The Council

By Cat Grayson. Last Updated 21st May 2024. This is a guide on public liability claims against the council. It will discuss the eligibility requirements that need to be met in order for a personal injury claim to be valid, as well as the time limits that need to be adhered to when starting legal proceedings.

Additionally, it will look at the duty of care local councils owe, as well as some of the responsibilities they have. This guide also provides examples of how an accident could occur, and the subsequent injuries that could be sustained, if this duty of care is not upheld.

Later in this guide, we discuss personal injury payouts, including what they could be made up of, and how they are often calculated.

To conclude, we will discuss the benefits of working with one of the No Win No Fee solicitors from our panel and the services they could offer, such as help gathering evidence to strengthen your case.

Please continue reading to learn more about public liability claims. Otherwise, you can get in touch with our team through one of the following contact methods:

A dislodged computer keyboard tile that states 'personal injury law'.

Select A Section

  1. Public Liability Claims Against The Council – When Can You Seek Compensation?
  2. Examples Of Potential Compensation Claims Against Local Councils
  3. Potential Payouts In A Council Compensation Claim
  4. What Evidence Could Help You When Claiming Against The Council?
  5. Why Use No Win No Fee Solicitors For Public Liability Claims Against The Council?
  6. Learn More About Making Public Liability Claims

Public Liability Claims Against The Council – When Can You Seek Compensation?

When you are in a council-owned space, they owe you a duty of care under the Occupiers’ Liability Act 1957 (OLA). Under this legislation, they need to make sure that the space is reasonably safe for visitors. They could help maintain this duty of care by performing regular risk assessments, for example.

Not every instance of a public injury will result in the right to claim compensation. To form the basis of a valid claim against the council, you need to establish that you were injured as a result of their negligence. Negligence occurs when:

  • You are owed a duty of care.
  • This duty was breached.
  • You are injured as a result.

For example, councils are often responsible for streets and pavements. If they were aware that a faulty paving stone was causing a tripping hazard but didn’t fix it, and this caused you to trip and injure your knee, then you may be able to make a claim.

Our team of advisors are here to help. When you get in touch, they can evaluate your potential compensation claim against the local council for free.

Examples Of Potential Compensation Claims Against Local Councils

As we’ve already mentioned, you need to be able to prove that not only did the council breach their duty of care, but also that you were injured to be able to make a public liability claim. So, what could council negligence look like in the context of a personal injury claim? 

  • A defective paving stone is reported to the council, but they do not fix it within an adequate timeframe. You trip over this paving stone, hitting your head on the curb and suffering a severe head injury.
  • An employee in a council-owned building, such as a leisure centre, fails to put out any wet floor signs after mopping. This causes you to slip and fall, and you dislocate your knee as a result. 
  • The council is aware of a broken step on a public stairwell, but does not fix it or signpost that it is faulty. This causes you to fall down the stairs, and break your ankle.

All claims are different, and certain circumstances, such as when you were injured, might affect your ability to claim. To find out if your case could be valid, get in touch with a member of our team today.

Potential Payouts In A Council Compensation Claim

In successful public liability claims against the council, awarded payouts can be divided into two main heads of claim. These are special and general damages. 

General damages compensate for the psychological and physical pain your injuries have caused you. The severity of your injuries, recovery time, loss of enjoyment, and impact on your well-being are all considered when valuing your injuries.

Personal injury solicitors may also use the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG) and medical records to help them calculate the value of general damages in your claim.

The JCG lists different types of injuries at different levels of severity. Whilst we have included some of these in the table below, these are only to be used as a guide.

InjurySeverityCompensation Bracket - GuidelinesComments
Multiple Severe Injuries And Special DamagesSevereUp to £1000,000+Multiple severe injuries and special damages, such as compensation for lost earnings.
BackSevere (a) (i)£111,150 to £196,450Damage to the spinal cord and nerve roots which lead to very serious consequences.
HeadModerate (c) (iii)£52,500 to £110,720Memory and concentration are affected and the ability to work is reduced with a small risk of epilepsy. However, any dependence on others is very limited.
LegLess Serious (c) (i)£21,920 to £33,880An incomplete recovery from fractures.
AnkleModerate (c)£16,770 to £32,450Fractures and ligament tears causing less serious disabilities.
KneeModerate (b) (i)£14,840 to £26,190Injuries that involve, for example, dislocation or torn cartilage, causing a mild future disability.
WristLess Severe (c)£15,370 to £29,900Injuries resulting in a permanent disability, such as a degree of persisting pain and stiffness.
ArmSimple (d)£8,806 to £23,430Fractures of the forearm that are simple in nature.
FootModest (g)Up to £16,770This bracket covers cases of a simple metatarsal fracture with ongoing symptoms.
HandModerate (h)£6,910 to £16,200Penetrating wounds, deep lacerations, and crush injuries are covered in this bracket.

Special Damages After An Accident In A Public Place

Special damages compensate for the financial losses that you have incurred due to your injuries. For example, you could claim back the cost of:

  • Loss of earnings.
  • Travel costs to and from the hospital. 
  • Expenses for medical care.
  • Costs for making adaptations to the home.

Evidence, such as payslips, travel tickets and invoices, can help prove any losses.

If you want a personalised estimate of how much you could be awarded following a successful claim, please speak with an advisor by calling the number above.

What Evidence Could Help You When Claiming Against The Council?

Evidence can help support public liability claims against the council as it can show a breach of duty occurred, and that this caused you to sustain harm. With that in mind, you might find it helpful to gather:

  • CCTV footage of the incident.
  • Photographs of the accident site and your injuries. 
  • A dated diary with your mental and physical symptoms recorded. 
  • Copies of medical records, including doctor notes.
  • Contact information from any possible witnesses.

If needed, one of the solicitors from a panel may be able to help you collect evidence and build you claim, provided you have valid grounds to seek compensation. Get in touch with our advisors today if you wish to make a public liability claim with help from a solicitor.

Why Use No Win No Fee Solicitors For Public Liability Claims Against The Council?

Our panel of No Win No Fee solicitors may be able to offer you a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA). A CFA is a contract that means that when your claim begins and while it is ongoing, you do not owe any costs to your solicitor for their services. This remains the same if your claim is found unsuccessful. 

On the other hand, if you have a successful claim, your solicitor can take a percentage of your compensation as their success fee. However, this is legally capped ensuring you keep the majority of your settlement. 

If you need any other guidance on public liability claims against the council, or would like to find out whether a solicitor from our panel could assist you in seeking compensation on a No Win No Fee basis, contact an advisor. To do so, you can:

Learn More About Making Public Liability Claims Against The Council

You can find more of our helpful guides below:

You can find some helpful external resources below:

Thank you for reading our helpful guide on public liability claims against the council. If you have any other questions, please contact an advisor using the details provided above.

Page by EY

Published by NL