Being a member of the armed forces comes with a unique set of risks, but it's perfectly reasonable to expect that you're provided with the equipment to protect you and to do your job properly.

If you've suffered an injury because of defective military equipment, then our solicitors could help you claim compensation through a civil case, in addition to anything you may have received through the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme (AFCS).

Our lawyers have previously secured compensation for military personnel who were issued with the following pieces of defective equipment:

  • Weapons and ammunition
  • Transport - including land vehicles
  • Aircraft - including component parts
  • Combat body armour
  • Personal protective equipment (PPE) - including facemasks or ear defenders
  • Diving equipment
  • Parachutes
  • Heavy machinery
  • Ladders.

The consequences of defective equipment in a combat situation can be tragic. We have experience helping service personnel or their loved ones claim, if faulty equipment (or a lack of equipment) has caused or contributed to their injuries.

If you’ve been injured by defective military equipment while serving in any capacity in the Army, Navy, RAF or Special Forces, you may be able to claim compensation. You could also claim if you were injured while serving in the Army Reserve (formerly the Territorial Army), Navy, RAF or Special Forces Reserves.

A number of our solicitors who handle defective military equipment claims are former armed forces personnel themselves. We have a proven track record in establishing that faulty equipment or a lack of training has caused an injury.

If you have any questions about claiming compensation, call us today on 0800 056 4110 for a free initial consultation about your case, or contact us online and we'll get back to you.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Who Can Claim Compensation For Defective Equipment?

If you've been injured because of defective equipment, you could claim compensation. You could also claim compensation on behalf of a loved one who has died (or who now lacks mental capacity as a result of their injuries).

There are a number of circumstances in which our lawyers have helped service personnel and their families, including:

  • Equipment malfunctions
  • Inadequate equipment, for example offering too little protection for a particular situation
  • Insufficient training in the use of equipment
  • Equipment not being made available when needed

We've represented clients who have been injured in Iraq, Afghanistan, Sierra Leone, Canada, Germany and Kenya, but making a claim certainly isn't affected by where an accident occurred. You could be able to claim whether you were in a training accident in the UK or overseas, or while on tour.

Defective equipment is often grounds to overturn the defence of combat immunity, which the Ministry of Defence sometimes uses to prevent it being sued for injuries sustained in combat situations. The MoD could be responsible for your injuries while you were in combat if they were caused by faulty equipment – find out more about how combat immunity can affect a claim.

You normally have three years to claim compensation, from the date the injury happened. In cases where a loved one has lost mental capacity, there is no time limit for claiming.

If you're unsure whether or not you'll be able to make a claim, call us today on 0800 056 4110 for a free initial consultation. We'll discuss your accident, and offer our expert advice about your options.

What Kind Of Injuries Can I Claim Compensation For?

We've helped service personnel claim compensation for a number of different injuries caused by defective military equipment. These range from recoverable conditions like broken bones to long-term and permanent conditions such as deafness, loss of limb and psychological damage.

Tragically, defective equipment can also result in fatal injuries, and we have helped families claim compensation in these situations too.

You could be able to claim compensation for injuries that took place during combat, in training, or while on tour – provided that the injury was caused by defective equipment, or a lack of training in how to use it properly.

The type and severity of your injury can play a large role in how much compensation you can claim for, particularly if it's serious enough to lead to a military discharge. When calculating a settlement, we'll take the following things into account:

  • Your age, rank and specialism
  • Your condition, and its severity
  • Psychological trauma
  • Medical expenses you've had to pay, as well as travel expenses to any appointments
  • Your care and support needs – both now and in the future
  • Modifications to your home
  • Mobility aids
  • Your pain and suffering

    We'll also make sure that the loss of the following types of income/benefit are taken into account:

  • Service earnings
  • Pension contributions or resettlement grant
  • Commitment bonuses
  • Specialist pay and allowances
  • Service benefits, including loss of subsidised quarters and Learning Credits

If you'd like to find out more about making a defective equipment claim, contact us on 0800 056 4110 for a free consultation. We'll discuss your situation, and offer our advice on your options.

Why Choose Irwin Mitchell For A Defective Military Equipment Claim?

A number of our military solicitors are former service personnel themselves, so we completely understand the concerns that you may have about making a compensation claim for an injury caused by defective equipment.

Among our armed forces experts is a former Ammunition Technical Officer, bringing specialist knowledge to cases involving defective ammunition.

We have a proven track record in making compensation claims against the Ministry of Defence, and have been involved in a number of landmark military cases, including establishing that a helicopter should be classified as work equipment for its passengers and crew. We have also run cases on the lack of enhanced body armour, which has led to it becoming standard personal protective equipment (PPE) as a result.

Bringing a claim against the MoD can be a daunting prospect, and it helps to have the experts on your side. There are strict rules against discriminating against service personnel who make compensation claims, and any settlement we secure will come out of a special MoD budget rather than affecting your unit.

We pride ourselves on being a full service law firm, and offer ongoing support to our clients after a claim has ended. In addition to handling your claim, we can help through a number of our personal legal services, providing support with:

  • Buying or selling a house
  • Divorce, children and family matters
  • Employment difficulties
  • Financial planning including tax and trusts
  • Wills, trust and probate services

If you have any questions or concerns about making a claim, and how we can help, call us today on 0800 056 4110 for a free initial consultation. Our solicitors will discuss your case with you, and offer their expert advice on your options.

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We're proud to be part of The Royal British Legion Solicitor's Group


Our Armed Forces Expertise

Since 1987, our specialist military injury team has helped hundreds of injured personnel from the Army, RAF and Royal Navy to claim compensation. We are considered one of the top law firms in the country for military claims and several cases we were involved in were recently featured in the Chilcot Inquiry.

We work closely with a number of Armed Forces welfare branches and organisations, and are the PAX appointed legal representatives under the PAX Personal Accident Insurance Scheme. We're also proud supporters of:

  • The Royal British Legion Solicitors Group
  • Help For Heroes
  • SSAFA Forces Help

Several of our solicitors were part of team that recently won The Claims Innovation Award for Legal Service Team of the Year (2016) for their pro bono work within The Royal British Legion Solicitors Group (TRBLSG).


Our Offices

Our offices are located in major cities throughout the UK and have excellent transport links.