In England and Wales, under the limitation rules, where an individual is bringing a claim for compensation, court proceedings must be commenced within 3 years of the date of the accident, failing which the claimant will lose the right to bring his or her claim. However, injured parties who were under the age of 18 at the time of their accidents have until the day prior to their 21st birthdays to commence proceedings. A court has the discretion to extend or waive the limitation period if it is considered equitable to do so.
Legal Aid for personal injury cases was largely abolished in the late 1990s and replaced with arrangements whereby the client would be charged no fee if her or his case was unsuccessful (known as No win, no fee).
No win no fee is the term used to describe the Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA) between a law firm and their client. In a Personal Injury claim, this is an agreement between the client and their lawyer, which will enable the lawyer to take on a personal injury case on the understanding that if they lose the case, the client will not have to pay their lawyer’s costs.
However if the lawyer wins the case they will be entitled to their standard fee plus an uplift referred to as a success fee. In English law, the success fee cannot be greater than 100% of the lawyer’s standard fee.