Any civilian sub-contractor of the armed forces, member of the armed forces or former member of the armed forces can claim compensation for an injury sustained as a result of Ministry of Defence negligence providing that the incident happened within the past three years. It is also possible to claim if you are a close relative of someone who has suffered fatal injuries in any such accident.
The same rights as everyone else
Although there are a few particular exceptions, most armed forces members who sustain injury as a result of another party's negligence have the right to make an accident claim, most commonly against the Ministry of Defence.
In addition to making a civil military accident claim, affected parties may also be able to make applications through the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme or War Pension Scheme.
Furthermore, just as with civilian workers who sustain fatal injuries in their workplaces, family members of armed forces members and sub-contractors whose accidents end in fatality should also be able to make compensation claims for their loss.
Claims for injuries sustained in conflict
For the most part, the principle of "combat immunity" means that armed forces members and their families cannot make claims for injuries sustained on the frontline.
However, there are notable exceptions, and each case is assessed individually. For example, if the injury is sustained on the frontline but is not related to combat or is related to some clear failing of safety provision on the part of the MoD, it may be possible to make a successful military accident claim.
Board of Inquiry
A Board of Inquiry (BOI) (sometimes also called a Regimental Inquiry) is a regulatory investigation into any military-related accident that results in serious injury or fatality.
BOIs are not courts but tribunals or panels and, as such, the media require special permission if they are to report on them. Furthermore, because of their special status, BOIs are governed by the "Queens Regulations".
BOIs are concerned with establishing the cause of an accident, so as to provide answers and to help prevent similar incidents from taking place in the future. They must be presided over by an officer who is ranked not lower than captain, while at least two other officers must also be present for the process to be considered legitimate.
The MoD says that BOIs must be convened within two days of the military accident occurring; however, they should be adjourned in the event it is decided that a criminal prosecution may be appropriate.
Seth Lovis & Co, military accident claim solicitors
In most cases, if you are looking to make a military accident claim you have three years from the date of the accident to commence your claim; in the event of a fatal accident, it is likely that you will have three years from the date on which your loved one died.
The specialist military injury solicitors at Seth Lovis & Co can help you decide whether it would be in your interests to proceed with a claim.
Please call our team in London today on 0808 252 0678 for more information about how we may be able to help. Alternatively, fill out an online claim form.
We are based in the heart of legal London, within easy reach of mainline and underground stations. However, we are also willing to come to you wherever you are in the country.