Judicial College guidelines – personal injury awards explained


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When making a personal injury compensation claim it is common for Claimant’s to question how much compensation they are likely to be awarded should their claim be successful.

We have attempted to answer that question as much as possible with our personal injury claims payout guide, which assigns a financial value to the pain and suffering caused by a variety of different injuries. This financial value is influenced by the guidelines set by the Judicial College.

Here we look at the Judicial College guidelines in more detail and provide more information regarding how personal injury payouts are calculated.

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What is included in a personal injury compensation payout?

Personal injury compensation payouts are generally made up of two types of damages: General Damages and Special Damages.


These are damages paid out to compensate for the actual injuries you have suffered, and as such are calculated to reflect the pain, suffering and loss of amenity (sometimes called PSLA) you sustained as a direct result of the injury.


These are calculated in order to compensate the Claimant for any financial losses they incur because of the injuries they have suffered, which commonly includes: medical costs, loss of earnings, travel costs etc…

The Judicial College have published their “Guidelines for the Assessment of General Damages in Personal Injury Cases” as a general guide that helps legal professionals determine the value of general damages, as these are more vague and open to interpretation than special damages.

How much compensation will I get?

Compensation payouts for personal injury claims can range from just a few hundreds of pounds up to hundreds of thousands of pounds. The amount you could be awarded depends on the type of injury you suffer and how severe it is.

Under the Judicial College guidelines, for example, a minor hand injury is eligible for general damages of anywhere between £700  – £4,000, and then depending on how the injury has affected your work and led to loss of earnings and any other expenses, it could increase to a lot more after special damages are also taken into account.

At the higher end of the scale, Claimant’s who suffer severe and dramatically life-altering injuries such as quadriplegia can expect to receive a payout commensurate with the devastating affect such an injury has on their life – with general damages in advance of £300,000 in some cases. There would also be a whole career’s worth of loss of earnings as well as ongoing care costs and house modifications to take into account for special damages in such cases, which can increase the payout even further.

While it is always worth getting an idea of how much you could claim, it is worth noting that the Judicial College guidelines should be treated as a guide only. Every case is different and subject to different sets of circumstances which can lead to varying payout amounts for very similar injuries.

What is the “plus 10%” rule?

Everyone involved in a modern personal injury claim – the Claimant, the Defendant, their legal representatives and the Courts – wants to see cases settled as quickly and efficiently as possible.


In order to encourage both parties to settle without the need to go to Court, the Claimant is offered an extra 10% on top of the amount recommended in the Judicial College guidelines if the Defendant later fails in Court to beat a Claimant’s offer to settle the claim.

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For more information on making a personal injury claim, or if you would like to learn more about how much compensation you could be entitled to, contact our expert legal team today:

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