If you've been injured while off duty in an accident that wasn't your fault, or you've been assaulted, our solicitors may be able to help you claim compensation.

We understand that service personnel have different needs when making a claim. Concerns about loss of service benefits, pay and allowances following an injury are common, and we'll ensure that all these things are considered when pursuing compensation on your behalf.

Insurance companies often have limited knowledge of the value of a lost service career, so without specialist military lawyers to accurately value your claim, it could be settled for less than you’re entitled to.

We've represented service personnel who have been in a number of different kinds of accidents, including:

In some instances – such as injuries sustained at a gym or service-approved sporting event – it may be possible to claim from the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme (AFCS). Our specialist solicitors will be able to advise you on who we will need to claim against for your injuries.

Our lawyers are also experienced in claiming through the Criminal Injuries (Overseas) Compensation Scheme, which is a specialist scheme for service personnel (and their families) who have been assaulted abroad.

If you’ve been injured in an off duty accident while serving in the Army, Navy, RAF or Special Forces you may be able to claim compensation. You may also be able to claim if you were injured while serving in the Army Reserve (formerly the Territorial Army), Navy, RAF or Special Forces Reserves.

We have the largest personal injury team in the UK, claiming over £1 billion in the last two years alone for our clients. No matter the injury, and no matter the circumstances, you will be met with compassionate, practical advice that puts your well being first.

If you have any questions about claiming compensation for an accident that happened while off duty, call us today on 0800 022 3321 for a free initial consultation about your case or contact us online and we'll get back to you.

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Off Duty Accident Claims - More Information

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Frequently Asked Questions

Who Can Claim Compensation For An Off-Duty Accident?

If you were involved in an accident that wasn't your fault while you were off-duty, then you may be able to make a claim for compensation.

There are different rules for military personnel who are injured while on duty, but if you were off-duty at the time then you'll generally have the same rights to make a claim as a civilian would.

The only difference may be if you were on a base, but off-duty, when your accident happened. In this case, it may be that the Ministry of Defence is liable for your compensation, depending on the circumstances of your accident. In this case, you may also be able to claim under the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme, though there is nothing stopping you from making a civil claim too.

If you were off-base at the time of your accident, then you can make a claim if someone else was responsible for your injuries, whether it was an accident caused by another party's negligence, or a criminal assault.

You generally have three years from the date of your accident to bring a compensation claim, though there are a few exceptions. If you were under 18 at the time, for example, you will have three years from the date of your 18th birthday to claim.

In the case of fatal accidents, the family of the deceased have three years from either the date your loved one died, or the date you received the post-mortem results.

There is no time limit for people who don't have the mental capacity to make legal decisions, which often applies to those who have suffered serious brain injuries.

We've helped our clients claim for a wide range of injuries, in an equally wide range of circumstances, including:

Injuries that we have helped our clients claim for include:

  • Soft tissue injuries
  • Broken bones
  • Serious injuries
  • Fatal injuries
  • Psychological trauma.

However, these lists are by no means exhaustive – no matter what your circumstances, if you believe that someone else was responsible for your injuries, then you may have a claim. For more information, call us on 0800 022 3321 and we'll be happy to discuss your options in a free initial consultation.

What If My Accident Happened While I Was On Leave Abroad?

Travel is a central part of the lives of many in the armed forces, and accidents while on leave abroad are common. If you were injured in an accident that wasn't your fault while you were on leave abroad, you still have the same rights as civilians to make a claim.

However, whatever your status, the rules for claiming compensation can be different from country to country, so there may be different rules or time limits to if you were making a claim at home.

If you were travelling with a package tour operated by a company located in England or Wales, then there are special provisions under the Package Travel Regulations 1992 that mean you'll be able to claim through the UK courts. However, if you were travelling independently, then you may have to bring a claim through the local courts of the country where your accident took place.

If this is the case, we work with an international network of partner law firms to ensure we have all of the knowledge of local laws required to handle your case. Representatives from these firms can also attend court hearings on your behalf, so you don't have to worry about returning to the country in question to go to court.

When making a claim for an accident that happened abroad, there may be different time limits to the usual three year timeframe for claims in the UK, so it's vital that you contact us as soon as possible to ensure you don't miss out on your opportunity to claim compensation that you're entitled to.

If you have any questions or concerns about making a claim abroad, then contact us on 0800 022 3321 for a free consultation on your case.

Can I Claim If I Was Assaulted Abroad?

Since 1979 the MoD has operated the Criminal Injuries (Overseas) Compensation Scheme, which mirrors the UK Criminal Injury Compensation Scheme. This allows service personnel deployed abroad (and their families) to claim compensation if they are the innocent victims of violent crime.

You normally have two years from the date of the assault to claim through the Criminal Injuries (Overseas) Compensation Scheme. If you have been the victim of criminal violence after being stationed overseas, it’s important to contact us as soon as possible so we can begin investigating your claim.

Claiming compensation can be a daunting prospect for anyone, so it helps to have the experts on your side. If you have any questions about our services, and how we can help, don't hesitate to contact us on 0800 022 3321 for a free initial consultation on your claim.

Awards and Accreditation

We're always proud to be recognised for the work we do for our clients and have been named as a leading firm in the latest legal guides - which provide information and recommendations about lawyers and law firms in the UK.

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Excellent and well known team that acts quickly and is a pleasure to work with." 
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What Our Clients Say

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I am so happy i chose Irwin Mitchell as my solicitors, they have done nothing but help me threw my recovery since my tragic accident, I am still recovering and they do their absolute best to make my life easier…

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Royal British Legion


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.