11 Aug 2023

Audio Vestibular Treatment: A Lifeline for Individuals with Brain Injuries

Brain injuries can have profound and lasting effects on an individual’s physical, cognitive, and emotional well-being. One often overlooked consequence of brain injuries is their impact on the auditory and vestibular systems, which play a crucial role in maintaining balance, spatial orientation, and overall sensory perception. In this blog, we delve into the realm of audio vestibular treatment, shedding light on its significance in helping those with brain injuries regain control over their lives.

Understanding Audio Vestibular Treatment:

Audio vestibular treatment is a specialised therapeutic approach, that addresses issues related to hearing, balance, and spatial awareness. It encompasses a range of interventions aimed at mitigating the challenges faced by individuals who have sustained brain injuries. These treatments are designed to optimise the function of the auditory and vestibular systems, ultimately improving the quality of life for those affected.

Benefits of Audio Vestibular Treatment for Brain Injury Survivors:

  1. Restoration of Balance:

Brain injuries can disrupt the delicate balance mechanisms within the inner ear, leading to dizziness, vertigo, and difficulties with coordination. Audio vestibular treatment employs a variety of exercises and techniques to retrain the brain and inner ear, facilitating the restoration of balance and reducing the risk of falls.

  1. Enhanced Spatial Awareness:

Impaired spatial awareness is a common issue for brain injury survivors, leading to difficulties in navigating and interacting with the environment. Through targeted therapies, audio vestibular treatment helps individuals re-establish a stronger sense of spatial orientation, improving their ability to move confidently and independently.

  1. Auditory Rehabilitation:

Brain injuries can affect auditory processing and lead to hearing problems. Audio vestibular treatment includes strategies to enhance auditory perception and processing, aiding in the interpretation of sounds and speech.

  1. Reduced Sensory Overload:

Many brain injury survivors experience sensory overload, where normal stimuli become overwhelming. Audio vestibular treatment incorporates techniques to help individuals adapt to sensory stimuli, reducing distress and promoting emotional well-being.

  1. Cognitive Benefits:

The auditory and vestibular systems are closely connected to cognitive functions such as attention, memory, and problem-solving. Audio vestibular treatment can indirectly enhance these cognitive abilities by optimising sensory inputs and their integration within the brain.

  1. Improved Quality of Life:

By addressing the challenges posed by brain injuries, audio vestibular treatment empowers individuals to engage more fully in daily activities, participate in social interactions, and experience an improved overall quality of life.

Legal Considerations:

In cases where brain injuries have resulted from accidents or incidents caused by negligence or wrongdoing, individuals may be entitled to compensation. It’s essential to consult with experts who specialise in personal injury cases related to brain injuries. Coulthursts can help assess the circumstances, gather evidence, and navigate the legal process to ensure that brain injury survivors receive the support and compensation they deserve.

Audio vestibular treatment offers a ray of hope for individuals grappling with the aftermath of brain injuries. Its multidimensional approach, focusing on balance, spatial awareness, and auditory rehabilitation, can significantly enhance the lives of those affected. By understanding the importance of audio vestibular treatment and seeking appropriate legal assistance from Coulthursts, brain injury survivors can take crucial steps toward rebuilding their lives and securing a brighter future.

Author:  Karen Hayes who is a brain injury solicitor with more than 20 years’ experience.  Read more about Karen here

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21 Jun 2023

Why it’s time to wise up and wear a head cam

Britain’s leading police officer for preventing road deaths believes that cyclists should wear head cameras to deter dangerous motorists because the evidence this would provide would enable the police to successfully prosecute lawbreakers threatening their safety.

Detective Chief Superintendent Andy Cox, formerly the most senior road safety officer with the Metropolitan Police and now the National Police Chiefs’ Council lead for fatal collision investigation reporting, said it would make cyclists what he called “part of the road danger solution” because police could not solve the problem on their own.

He made the announcement when he tried to raise awareness of the issue as he cycled 30 miles around central London with the campaigning BBC broadcaster, Jeremy Vine, who is well-known for recording near misses he has with motor vehicles while cycling to work in the capital[1].

His statement provides welcome support for all of us at Coulthursts as we are the leading brain injury lawyers specialising in winning compensation for people who have life changing Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) issues. We have always made it clear that although not necessary for pursuing a claim for damages, the existence of head cam footage can greatly enhance the likelihood of a successful outcome.

It also comes at a time when the Government is actively pursuing a policy of encouraging more people to travel by cycle and on foot to enhance their health and well-being and as part of the fight against pollution and global warming.

It is aiming to make cycling and walking the preferred mode of transport for all journeys under five miles by 2040. At the same time, its framework, Active Travel England, envisages that half of all journeys in towns and cities will be walked or cycled by 2030.

The Government’s aspirations in this direction have been helped by the cycling converts who turned to self-power transport during the Covid lockdown as a legal way of escaping from the constraints of their homes and discovered that they rather liked the freedom of peddling down the open road.

The post-pandemic popularity of cycling is quite marked. In England, there were almost 6.5 million regular cyclists by 2021 – a rise of more than 28 per cent compared with five years previously.

Other parts of the United Kingdom also recorded increases, though of a rather more modest level. During roughly the same period, the percentage of people from all age groups in Scotland increased from 10.3 to 12.8 and in Northern Ireland from 12 per cent to 18 per cent. Respondents to a smaller sample in Wales revealed that 4 per cent of them cycled at least once a week for genuine travel purposes.

Government figures from 2014-16 showed that 9.5 per cent of adults each claimed to cycle at least 53 miles a year. By 2019-20, the average yearly distance travelled by each cyclist had increased to 88 miles per year.

In addition, the Government’s National Travel Survey showed that 47 per cent of people in England had access to a bike in 2020 and many of the new converts have remained as committed cyclists. This is supported by the fact that the UK spent £514 million on cycles during 2022 compared with only £390 million in 2018.

However, there is a downside. As cycling has increased in popularity, so have the accidents involving cyclists and they make bleak reading. Latest statistics show that more than 100 cyclists are killed and more than 4,000 are seriously injured every year, 56 per cent of cyclist fatalities occur on rural roads and the biggest single cause of cyclist casualties of all sorts is when they are wearing dark clothing and cannot be seen properly[2].

It is therefore a sobering thought that, according to The Brain Charity, 45% of British cyclists admitted to riding without a helmet even though wearing one could reduce the risk of brain injury. The body has now teamed up with a cycle gear manufacturer to draw attention to the danger[3].

Lightweight cameras are available for as little as £26 and it is also advisable to have  rear facing and forward facing cameras mounted on the cycle to catch shots which do not occur in an area where the cyclist does not happen to be looking at the time[4].

The matter has never been more important than it is now as the Government has been quick to latch onto new cycling converts as an important part of its drive towards a greener travel landscape.

Against such a background, there has never been a better time for cyclists wearing helmets and head cams to be as natural and common as motorists and their passengers wearing seatbelts.

For our terms of use and disclaimer follow this link: https://coulthursts.co.uk/legal-terms-of-use/

[1] https://www.standard.co.uk/news/uk/cyclists-wear-headcam-deter-dangerous-drivers-police-jeremy-vine-b1002004.html

[2] www.provizsports.com/en-gb/blog/uk-cycling-statistics/

[3] https://www.thebraincharity.org.uk/endura-bike-helmets-project-heid/

[4] www.cyclingweekly.com/group-tests/bike-helmet-cameras-327336#Cycling%20Safety%20Camera

10 May 2023

Spotting the signs and symptoms of concussion – an exclusive new graphic

Just click on the image above to find out more.

Concussion – or to give a more accurate description, a mild traumatic brain injury – can often go undetected or unreported for some considerable time, yet the possible long-term consequences can be devastating.

Following on from our informative blog on this subject, we have now produced an exclusive graphic of some of the vital signs to look out for if you think you, or someone you know, may be suffering from the effects of concussion.

For our terms of use and disclaimer follow this link: https://coulthursts.co.uk/legal-terms-of-use/

13 Apr 2023

Coulthursts further strenghtens talented team

Coulthursts, The Brain Injury Lawyers, have further strengthened their top legal team with the arrival of Kevin Walker who has joined the firm as a Brain Injury Lawyer.

Kevin, who for 29 years has been handling large catastrophic injury claims of up to £10 million, brings a wealth of experience to Coulthursts which is the only law firm in the UK specialising entirely in helping people to rebuild their lives following the effects of a traumatic brain injury (TBI).

“Kevin has long had a special interest in brain injury cases, and is particularly excited about the groundbreaking way we help clients to rebuild their lives as quickly as possible by paying for the rehabilitation they need before we have settled their claims for damages,” says MD Philip Coulthurst.

“His past experience includes occupying a variety of very senior and niche legal roles, including managing a Serious and Catastrophic Injuries team, advising on complex workplace accidents, motorcycle accident claims, and assisting with claims relating to road traffic accidents here in the UK and in other countries. He will be a most helpful and resourceful addition to our team.”

Kevin adds: “I am delighted to be joining Coulthursts because their entire ethos so closely matches the specialised area of legal work to which I have devoted my working life.

“Few traumas are more destructive than TBIs which can blight not only the lives of those affected themselves, but also the families and loved ones who support them. Coulthursts’ system of funding the care they need, whilst at the same time pursuing their claim for damages, is wholly impressive and I am proud that I will now be a part of the company being able to offer its services to even more clients in need of this specialist help.”

For our terms of use and disclaimer follow this link: https://coulthursts.co.uk/legal-terms-of-use/

06 Mar 2023

The little clues which show you may be concussed…and why you should seek legal & medical advice

According to NHS inform, concussion is the “sudden but short-lived loss of mental function that occurs after a blow or other injury to the head”[1]. It adds that concussion is “the most common but least serious type of brain injury” and that “…the medical term for concussion is minor traumatic brain injury”.

So whilst a concussion is sometimes perceived to be an almost innocuous occurrence – the kind we usually associate with a sports field injury or an assault, or road traffic accident – the reality can be very different.

For, as indeed NHS inform attests to, a concussion is very much a traumatic brain injury. And even if ‘minor’ (or ‘mild’ as is the common term), the consequences can still be devastating for those that do not recover quickly.

Indeed, the effects of a concussion aren’t always immediately evident, and instead can gradually develop over time, with the person concerned not realising that they are suffering from it.

The signs are there but people often do not recognise them, particularly if they have been in an accident or incident, may be in pain and/or on medication. In fact, patients could be suffering from a range of over two dozen symptoms, including headaches, fatigue, poor memory, poor concentration, light sensitivity, sadness, anxiety, getting easily irritated, dizziness and even feeling worn out after a good night’s sleep.

And if their injury has been caused by a third party – for example, in the case of an accident, violence or even a fall – then it would also be advisable to seek legal advice from a specialist in cases involving Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), and ideally with a speciality in concussion.

“Even though someone may have had a brain scan after an impact or violent shake to their head and no bleed has been found, they may still have suffered a concussion as concussions cannot be seen on a brain scan,“ explains Philip Coulthurst, MD of the specialist brain injury lawyers Coulthursts.

If you have been examined for concussion and your symptoms worsen, or if you later become aware of further symptoms – including those that make you feel nauseous or affect your thinking processes, or if you have worsening headaches, dizziness, problems with balance, slurred speech, loss of consciousness, sleepiness, weakness (and many other possible symptoms besides) – then you should return to A&E immediately. Note: You should have been given a head injury advice leaflet at A&E,  which among other things will advise you when you should return to A&E. It is important you follow the advice you have been given by any doctor.

Conversely, if you did not receive a head injury advice leaflet, then you should be able to find information online from the hospital you went to, but always err on the side of caution. You can also ring NHS 111 if you are unsure what to do and there are many useful sources of information to be found online, including this leaflet from Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust – https://rb.gy/g1hwii

“Most people recover quickly from a concussion or head injury, but a significant minority, particularly those whose injury was severe enough to go to hospital, do not,” adds Coulthurst. “Often, they can go on to suffer ongoing persisting symptoms.”

A concussion is clinically known as a mild TBI, although in the UK the words concussion and head injury are more commonly used. In fact, around 90% of those attending A&E with a head injury are classified as a concussion or mild head injury.

“Most concussions occur without a loss of consciousness,” explains Coulthurst, “yet, for those who do not fully recover, this can be anything but mild and can affect a person’s day-to-day life, including their personal relationships and ability to work.”

Indeed, according to one study, it “…is becoming clear that ‘mild’ is indeed a misnomer for this disease, because many patients experience significant and persistent symptoms. For these patients, mild Traumatic Brain Injury [Concussion] is anything but mild.”[2]

“The challenge with this is that it can then be extremely difficult to access healthcare and treatment for those who suffer ongoing problems following a concussion,” concludes Coulthurst, “and treatment can often be limited to focusing on one symptom or issue such as headaches or emotional problems.”

“As part of our service when representing clients, we are often able to help secure access to the best treatment and rehabilitation for concussion, mild TBI and post-concussion syndrome, and our focus is to do this as soon as possible and often long before any claim is settled. This helps to ensure that the necessary treatment, which our clients would often struggle to secure any other way, is not only delivered, but also at the time they need it most.”

“So, if you, or someone you know, may still be suffering symptoms from a concussion or mild TBI, then please get in touch.”

[1] https://www.nhsinform.scot/illnesses-and-conditions/injuries/head-and-neck-injuries/concussion#:~:text=Concussion%20is%20the%20sudden%20but,is%20minor%20traumatic%20brain%20injury.

[2] McMahon et al 2014 – Symptomatology and Functional Outcome in mTBI: Results from the prospective TRACK_TBI Study

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08 Feb 2023

The road traffic casualties who may be missing out on compensation

As many as half of all Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBIs) are believed to be caused by road traffic accidents (RTAs). But many of those injured are unaware they may have a case for support and compensation. What can be done to ensure injured parties get the support they need?

According to the best estimates available, some 1.4 million people attend hospital every year with a TBI1, and 160,000 of those then go on to be admitted for a longer stay. However, a significant proportion of people who sustain a TBI in a road traffic accident are thought to be missing out on compensation to which they are entitled, simply because they do not think they have a case.

The casualties slipping through the net include those who are partly at fault for the accident in which they were involved, or who are related to the person at fault. Others who mistakenly think they cannot make a claim, are those injured by a driver not subsequently prosecuted by the police, or who were in a crash with an uninsured driver or unknown driver. The injured party in all these scenarios could still be entitled to compensation to help them rebuild their lives.

According to the RAC Foundation, by September last year there were 40.8 million licensed vehicles on the UK’s roads, including 33.2 million cars, 4.1 million vans, 1.5 million motorcyles, 500,000 HGVs, and 150,000 buses and coaches2. On top of this there are also an unknown number of cycles and, of course, pedestrians. With all these different users sharing our crowded roads, it is therefore unsurprising that accidents happen.

In fact, someone is killed or seriously injured on UK roads every 16 minutes3, and there are thought to be a number of reasons why road traffic accident (RTA) rates remain consistently high:

· The driver or rider failing to look properly (37%)

· The driver or rider failing to judge the other person’s path or speed (19%)

· The driver or rider acting recklessly, hurried driving or speeding (16%)

· A poor turn or manoeuvre (12%)

· Loss of control (11%)

And whilst there have been considerable advances in vehicle technology, the likelihood of head injuries at speeds in excess of 10 mph remains high.

A TBI is usually caused by an impact to the head. This external force can cause a focal injury to the brain. An impact to the head, or if the head is violently shaken without any impact, can also cause what is known as an acceleration/deceleration injury. This is where there is a sudden violent movement of the head causing the brain to move and rotate inside the skull. These can cause bruising (contusion) to the brain and trauma to the blood vessels causing bleeding (hematoma or haemorrhage). Contusions and Bleeds will usually be seen on head scans; however, an acceleration/deceleration injury can cause the shearing or stretching of the nerve fibres (axons) inside the brain which are microscopic and unlikely to be visible on a brain scan. Concussions and those labelled a ‘mild head injury’ are also unlikely to be seen on any scan but can cause ongoing symptoms for some which can have significant consequences– see our blog on concussion.

The risk of TBI also depends on road user type (i.e. car, motorbike, bicycle or pedestrian), the speed of impact and the direction of impact. The higher the speed, the greater the impact on the skull and the brain. Research has shown that the risk of brain injury triples when the impact velocity is doubled.

Brain injury is also more likely in cars involved in side impacts, or where the change of speed is greater, like during a head-on collision. It is also more likely in vulnerable road users, especially where no head protection is worn, with pedestrians and cyclists six times more likely than car occupants to suffer moderate to severe brain injury on the roads.

The Office for National Statistics also gives us the following information relating to non-car road traffic accidents:

· Pedestrians – there are more than 700 pedestrian deaths, and 7,000 injuries annually

· Motorbikes – there are more than 600 motorbike deaths and almost 7,000 injuries annually

· Cycling – there are approximately 120 deaths and more than 2,000 injuries annually

Sadly, suffering from a TBI can be life changing, even if initially considered to be on the ‘mild’ end of the scale. It is therefore crucial to seek out specialist legal advice as soon as possible, even if you fear you may not have a case for compensation.

At Coulthursts, we are unique as a law firm in that we provide a joint legal and rehabilitation approach. We can will pay for and coordinate treatment and rehabilitation at the earliest opportunity, to give our clients the best chance of making the best and quickest recovery from their brain injury. At the same time, we deal with the legal claim and fight to obtain the best possible compensation. We also pride ourselves in providing support to the whole family and not just the injured individual.

Please do not hesitate to contact us to discuss your accident at no cost or obligation.

1 https://emj.bmj.com/content/39/3/233
2 https://www.racfoundation.org/motoring-faqs/mobility#a1
3 https://www.brake.org.uk/get-involved/take-action/mybrake/knowledge-centre/uk-road-safety

For our terms of use and disclaimer follow this link: https://coulthursts.co.uk/legal-terms-of-use/

21 Nov 2022

Experienced personal injury solicitor Karen Hayes joins Coulthursts

Karen Hayes has joined Coulthursts in the role of Brain Injury Solicitor.

Attracted by Coulthursts’ position as the UK’s only law firm dedicated entirely to providing legal  services for people recovering from traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)  – as well as the company’s new and innovative way of helping clients by funding rehabilitation up front before any settlement is reached – Karen brings with her more than 20 years’ experience in the area of personal injury.

“Karen has a long track record in working with a wide range of clients, including those with traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), spinal cord injuries, serious orthopaedic injuries and amputations,” explains MD Philip Coulthurst.

“She has demonstrated a clear passion for supporting clients with life-changing injuries throughout her career and, as such, she will be a great addition to the Coulthursts team as we focus on our position as the UK’s only law firm dedicated entirely to providing legal services for TBI claimants.

“We wish Karen every success in her new role at the heart of the Coulthursts team.”

Karen adds: “Traumatic Brain Injuries impact every aspect of life, not only of the individual involved but of their families, too, so this is a unique opportunity for me to deliver the best possible outcome for clients and their families.

“I have been impressed with Coulthursts’ commitment to supporting clients at every stage of their recovery, and I am looking forward to working in this new and unique way.”

For our terms of use and disclaimer follow this link: https://coulthursts.co.uk/legal-terms-of-use/

01 Nov 2022

What to do in the case of a hit & run

Many people think there is little they can do in terms of making a claim for compensation if they or a loved one is the victim of a Hit & Run road traffic incident. But the good news is, there is still much you can do to pursue a claim, even if the vehicle and driver are never identified, or they turn out to be uninsured. Brain injury lawyer Kirsty Mors explains more…

According to the latest government statistics on reported road casualties in Great Britain, more than 27,000 people suffered serious injuries on the UK’s roads in 2021, with another 100,000 suffering less severe injuries.

These only account for the incidents that have been reported to the police, the numbers are therefore likely to be a lot higher. In fact, up to half of all brain injuries are estimated to occur on the road. We don’t know exactly how many of these were as a result of a Hit & Run incident, but we do know it’s likely that in a high percentage of such incidents the drivers and vehicles were never identified.

As a result, for anyone affected by such an incident (including their families and loved ones), it can feel like nothing can be done with regards to pursuing a claim for compensation. After all, how do you pursue a claim against an unidentified driver?

But thanks to the creation of the Motor Insurers Bureau (MIB) in 1946 – a not-for-profit organisation funded by the UK insurance industry to protect victims of accidents caused by uninsured and untraced drivers – help is at hand. Through its Untraced Drivers Agreement, the MIB deals with more than 15,000 Hit & Run claims every year where the driver has never been identified.

There is therefore much that can be done to help anyone who has suffered a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) to get the help and support they need. Here is our advice to anyone who thinks they – or someone they know – may have a claim:

  • Get as much information as you can at the scene of the accident – witness details, statements, camera footage
  • Try to take down the make, model, colour and registration of the vehicle (or vehicles involved)
  • Always report the incident to the police as soon as possible, this should be within 14 days unless of the incident unless you have a good reason not to
  • Seek medical attention, either immediately or as soon as possible after the incident. The MIB will require evidence that you have sustained an injury, so having this documented by a medical professional as early as possible is helpful
  • Take photographs of any damage to your vehicle (if you are in a position to do so)
  • Notify your insurer (if you have one) but don’t rush into accepting your own insurer’s legal advice… always opt for a specialist who has exacting knowledge and experience of dealing with cases involving your specific injuries

We approach any claim under the MIB scheme in the same way that we would if it were a claim directly against a motor insurer. The MIB essentially acts as the defendant and it is still for the injured person to prove that they should receive compensation, and the level of compensation that they should receive, which is where we can help.

At Coulthursts, we have specific experience of successfully pursuing claims against the MIB and we always have the same end goal in mind – to secure the level of compensation that truly reflects the often devastating, long-term effects of being injured by an unknown, or uninsured, Hit & Run driver.

For our terms of use and disclaimer follow this link: https://coulthursts.co.uk/legal-terms-of-use/

31 Oct 2022

Why I value the Coulthurst Way

Brain injury lawyer Kirsty Mors explains how Coulthursts’ unique approach has allowed her to achieve so much more for her clients.

I joined Coulthursts in September 2020. What attracted me to the firm was that they specialised solely in brain injury and had a  unique model of funding clients’ rehabilitation and treatment from an early stage. This is unusual and something I had not come across before; the norm is to wait for the other party to agree to pay for treatment, which can be often 6-12 months down the line, or longer, and in some cases, they refuse to pay for any rehabilitation at all.

At Coulthursts, our focus is on what our clients need to enable them to start rebuilding their lives. In most cases, this is early rehabilitation, which we can arrange quickly, and in many cases even whilst the client is still in hospital, enabling them to be discharged to home where they are much more comfortable to begin the next stage of their journey.

Our rehabilitation and support service also extends to financial support, not only paying for treatment, but also emergency funds. Most of our clients are unable to return to work initially following their accident and will suffer loss of earnings. We can help ease this financial burden, which is great as it takes some of the stress from them, enabling them to focus on their recovery.

Just as importantly, our lawyers only have a small number of cases at any one time, which means I am able to be there for my clients to support them emotionally. My clients are people who are often facing the biggest challenge of their life and a brain injury not only affects my client’s life, but also the life of those around them. So being able to support my clients and their families is another part of what I love about my role at Coulthursts.

My job is very varied, one day, I will be dealing with the complexities of the legal claim one day, arranging a charity to deliver cat food to a client the next, or arranging for a client’s house to be made ready for the final stage of their rehabilitation. Whilst some of these things may sound small, they make an enormous difference to my clients and I get great satisfaction from being able to help them with their needs, no matter how small.

One area particularly rewarding is working with clients who have sustained a ‘mild’ brain injury, more commonly referred to as a concussion. These types of injury do not show on a traditional CT or MRI scan, and therefore there is no ‘evidence’ of structural damage within the brain. Despite this, the effects of their injuries can be devastating. These claims are ‘controversial’, and it is highly likely that they will be robustly defended, which is why it is so important to have a lawyer with specialist knowledge of such injuries so that they can carefully interrogate and collate the evidence to support the case. Without this, claims can be under settled, leaving the client without the settlement package they deserve, and which will allow them to get the best possible life outcome. As a firm, we have often taken over these types of cases from other solicitors due to our specialist knowledge in this area.

I naturally become a big part of my client’s life throughout the claim, and I am privileged to be able to stay in touch with many of them, and see how they are getting on with their life.

Whilst it can be difficult seeing the effects a brain injury can have on my clients, my job is extremely rewarding as I can dedicate my time in helping them to put their lives back together, piece by piece.

For our terms of use and disclaimer follow this link: https://coulthursts.co.uk/legal-terms-of-use/

03 Oct 2022

My journey to specialising in traumatic brain injury

Brain injury solicitor Caroline Bolton explains how joining the team at Coulthursts has allowed her to make a bigger difference to her clients’ lives.

I studied for a degree in English Literature at York University, before taking a two-year postgraduate course at The College of Law to enable me to convert to law.  A legal career appealed to me as the perfect combination of the analytical and creative skills I had learnt on my degree, with a more structured and fact-based approach.  Also, the law offered many diverse career options, given the huge range of different practice areas to work in after qualification.

In order to qualify as a solicitor, I then did a two-year training contract.  I worked with a high street firm where I did three different ‘seats’ – in conveyancing, wills and probate and personal injury.  Whilst I enjoyed the different challenges of all three departments, the satisfaction of working with injured clients by far appealed to me the most.  I therefore chose to specialise in personal injury law, and I have been working in this field since 2004.

The human factor to my work is extremely satisfying, as my clients are all individuals with different needs.  I often become involved with them at perhaps the lowest point in their lives, as they are dealing with the far-reaching consequences of serious or catastrophic injury.  Each case is totally unique, and my work is very varied, with no two days being the same.  What is common in all my cases however, is the need to work closely with my clients and their families in order to help them through the new challenges they are facing.  I consequently get know them very well, which is a hugely enjoyable part of the job.

I joined Coulthursts in January 2021 almost a year after the firm had started, as the opportunity of being able to work purely on claims involving Traumatic Brain Injury appealed to me.  A big difference to anywhere I have worked before, is that we each have only a very small number of cases at any one time.  We aim to keep our caseloads in single figures, whereas I have commonly had around 90 in the past.  This low caseload enables me to give each matter the time it needs, leading to better outcomes achieved more quickly than is typical in high-value claims.  Brain injury can affect every area of my clients’ lives, including their work, relationships, home life and social life.  They can easily become depressed and lonely, and it is crucial that I provide the best support possible by being available to respond to queries or concerns quickly.  This element of the role is extremely satisfying, as it makes a genuine difference.

Our aim is not simply to get justice by negotiating the maximum compensation, but also just as importantly to ensure that our clients have the best chance of making the best recovery possible.  We do this by really focusing on rehabilitation from an early stage, even whilst still in hospital.  We are unique in that we fund care and treatment directly, often long before this is agreed by the other party, which enables our clients to start rebuilding their lives straight away.

Perhaps surprisingly to my clients, is that often the milder brain injuries can be the more complex claims to deal with.  These sorts of cases require specialist knowledge, without which they can easily be under-settled.  The symptoms and effects of mild traumatic brain injury can be invisible or easily overlooked, and the individual is often in denial.  It can therefore be a delicate balancing act in these types of cases to address the issues in order to secure an appropriate outcome that is in my clients’ best interests.

My job as a brain injury solicitor is very varied, and whilst it can be challenging, it is ultimately extremely rewarding.  I could not see myself doing anything else!

For our terms of use and disclaimer follow this link: https://coulthursts.co.uk/legal-terms-of-use/