Plain Speaking Promise

personal injury claims explained

At Smith Jones we pride ourselves on our professional yet “plain speaking” approach. The advice we give is based on many years of experience and stands for itself – without needing to be masked with legal jargon or confusing language.

We understand that having to deal with the law or speak to a lawyer for the first time can be daunting. So, we always take the time to explain what’s going on in a friendly and relaxed way. We talk through your options with you and clarify the process, step by step.

Here are some of the most commonly used legal phrases and terms with a simple explanation of what they really mean.

Conditional fee agreement (CFA) explained

Also known as a “no win no fee” agreement, a conditional fee agreement is used to pursue a claim without any cost to the claimant if unsuccessful.

Disbursements explained

These are the costs which we incur during the running of your case – covering, for example: items such as GP notes, police reports, land registry fees and medical reports.

Liability explained

In law, a person is “liable” if they are: responsible for / the cause of something that happens. For example, we will need to prove that somebody was liable (responsible) for your accident through their negligence.

Limitation period explained

This is the time limit within which you must bring your claim. In the UK this is 3 years but each country’s law is different. In some countries you have as little as one year.

ATE Insurance explained

Where applicable we will take out an After the Event (ATE) Insurance policy on your behalf to cover the cost of disbursements and the other side’s costs should you lose your case. This allows us to run your case on a no win, no fee basis.

Damages and settlement explained

This is the compensation (damages) or money (settlement) you will receive if your claim is successful.

“The friendly team helped me all the way through my claim. They kept me informed at all times and provided an excellent service.”

Mr David Siviter

We hope that these explanations help de-mystify some of the language around the process of personal injury claims but if you have any further questions please call our FREE accident advice line on 0800 195 95 90 and we will be happy to talk to you about your claim and answer any questions you may have.

if you're not sure whether you can make a claim, then phone our free helpline on 0800 195 95 90 and we will assist you.

0800 195 95 90

Speak to our specialist personal injury lawyers today on our 24/7 Freephone helpline


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"...they worked so hard and asked so many questions and they never backed down and I think I could have so easily lost the case if it wasn't for their preserverence..."


  No Win, No Fee

 Helping our Clients for Over 25 years

  We recover your loss of earnings

Making a claim with Smith Jones is easy


One of our experts gives you a quick call to get the information they require


We evaluate your case and begin proceeding on a No Win No Fee basis


If successful, you receive a cash sum. Our average payout is over £11,500