Military Claims

Our military claims team have a wealth of experience representing former and current service personnel with regard to all manner of injury claims.

What is a military claim?

We act for clients anywhere in the world who have been injured in connection with their military service, their work for the Ministry of Defence or private defence contractor work. To make a successful compensation claim for an injury, you must show that it was caused or worsened, at least in part, by someone else’s negligence.

Why choose Bolt Burdon Kemp?

  • Military specialists
    Our success in military cases is based on our in-depth knowledge of military pay and career structures, and how the forces deal with issues like medical treatment, training, equipment and pensions.
  • Highly Qualified
    All our specialist military solicitors are members of Forces Law and the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers.
  • No win, no fee
    Under our ‘no win no fee’ scheme, you won’t have to pay any legal fees if your claim is unsuccessful. We offer service personnel and veterans a 20% preferential rate for deductions from damages in CFA cases.
  • Coverage
    We represent service personnel and veterans who have been injured anywhere in the World.
  • Highly recommended
    The Legal 500 2020 said of us:

“Bolt Burdon Kemp has one of the best, if not the best, military teams.”

 

Types of Military Claims

Military compensation claims can involve:

  • I first approached Bolt Burdon Kemp after initially finding out I was being medically discharged from the army and from the word go they were highly professional, understanding and reliable.  Kate Roos in particular was fantastic throughout the whole process keeping me updated and at ease when I needed it the most.  Thank you very much and I highly recommend to anyone reading this!

    Former Private

  • "I would like to thank Bolt Burdon and Kemp solicitors for representing me in this case. In particular I wish to thank Philippa Tuckman and Vicki Reid for all the hard work put into my case. I was pleasantly surprised by how quickly someone was assigned to my military claim and also by how I was kept regularly updated by telephone, E-mail and by post. I also found you to be genuine, polite, approachable and very well informed on each occasion that I corresponded with you and was impressed with the level of customer service you delivered. Despite the complexity involved in establishing fault due to the prolonged nature of my condition in the military, involving treatment from a number of military and civilian doctors, surgeons and physiotherapists over a number of years, you seemed to know exactly who to approach and how to approach them in order to obtain the documents required to successfully pursue my claim. Again I appreciate that this wasn't easy, especially when the other side on occasion couldn't locate records that appeared to be either missing or non-existent, but in spite of those minor setbacks, you were still able to successfully settle my claim. The settlement itself was a good deal more than I was expecting and due the military settling this matter out of court the settlement process has actually happened very quickly. I would also like to thank Selina and the finance team for their fast response and regular E-mail updates during this settlement process. Should I ever need legal representation in similar circumstances in the future I honestly would not hesitate in requesting you to represent me again safe in the knowledge that my case would be handled thoroughly, diligently and effectively."

    Olly Former member of HM Armed Forces (Army) Military Claims

  • My wife and I can’t thank the BBK team enough, especially Claire, Rhicha and Charlotte who took on my case to closure, all three ladies have always been throughout my claim, professional, understanding, diligent, caring and honest at all times, a true credit to the firm, I was recommended to use BBK by a friend and I would also give BBK my full recommendation to any one reading this. The team kept us fully informed throughout the case with clear explanations as to case status and implications of decisions we had to make.  We truly felt that we were always given very clear information and the best advice, we were always kept fully informed.  We always had the opportunity to ask questions and responses were very quick when we did. Thank you again

    Ex infantry SGT Military claims client

  • Thanks again for your efforts on my behalf Ahmed. You have changed my life and revitalised my hope for my long-term future.

    Former Sapper, Royal Engineers

  • "I would like to thank you for all your excellent assistance in my case. I always felt you had a personal interest in my case and after the 5 long years it made all the difference…"

    Anonymous Military Claims

  • I would like to offer my sincere thanks to the Bolt Burdon Kemp team, especially Rhicha, who took on my challenging case. You, Rhicha, have always been professional, understanding, diligent and mindful at all times. you guided me in the most sensitive of ways through legal jargon and processes and I never once did not feel fully informed. Your belief in my case helped me on a personal level. I have no words to express how thankful I am to you, so thank you from the bottom of my heart for getting justice for me and changing mine and my family’s lives.

    THO

  • On a more personal note, I wanted to express to you my deepest and warmest thank you for what has been an exceptional outcome and unwavering job well done. It is always a pleasure to work with and align with individuals that hold a similar set of values and determination to see something through. Your support and mentorship over the past years has been second to none and demonstrates a morale justice that extends beyond business. I would also like to forward that sentiment to your team who have supported you and I throughout.

    Former Royal Marine Aircrewman

  • Serving as a Reservist I was injured due to the collapse of a ladder, while working for my unit. Bolt Burdon Kemp came highly recommended by a friend and lived up to that recommendation!! From start to finish, Kate Roos was a pleasure to deal with, putting up with my questions and providing me with frequent updates. She was always realistic and reigned in my enthusiasm, but was firmly on my side during the negotiations!!! I had never considered litigation before and would wholeheartedly recommend Bolt Burdon Kemp to my service colleagues.

    Stuart, London OTC

  • After being offered £10,000 by the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme for my injury I contacted BKK for their help.  Rhicha took on my case and from the onset I felt assured that I had the very best person representing me.  Standing by me every step of the way there was never a moment where I didn’t know what was going on.  Every development in the case was explained in a way that was straight forward and easy to understand. I am especially grateful for the emotional support and understanding Rhicha gave to me during the most sensitive and traumatic parts of the case; my welfare was put before anything else.  Often ringing Rhicha out of hours, she would always answer with kind words, reassurance and empathy. Rhicha’s pure professionalism and expert knowledge, without a doubt won me this case against the MOD.  Settling at a JSM for a life changing amount, that would not have been achieved without her. If I was in the unfortunate position to go through this process again, BKK and in particular, Rhicha Kapila would be my first choice and I would highly recommend her services.

    Anonymous

  • I approached BBK just after my Armed Forces Compensation Scheme claim had been refused at tribunal.  My case was far too complex for me to prove negligence on my own, even with the help of forces charities. From the outset it was clear that my claim would take time, compounded by the fact I was still and am currently still serving, also still receiving medical treatment.  I knew the treatment I received while in Afghanistan for a newly presented illness was negligible and BBK took the case on and from there they handled my case brilliantly. I knew I was in good hands.  This is not a firm that overloads its staff.  The team I was dealing with were always on hand for updates and seemed genuinely concerned when treatment wasn't working for me or I was having a bad time and compassion goes a long way in my book.  They were always professional but always understanding and adaptable to my needs. I quickly learnt that this is a firm that likes to get things done so we're on my wavelength.  It's key to keep things moving so swift responses to their questions and keeping them updated at all times was important to me as it makes their job easier being updated along the way rather than chasing people.  Claims can be time critical so it's key to stay on top of it. Making a claim against the MoD can be a daunting prospect, especially for younger soldiers who may feel they will get in trouble for doing so.  This is not something to worry about, especially when dealing with one of the top firms in this sector. The process took time but ultimately was made much easier by the team being so attentive and proactive and would recommend BBK highly to anybody and in fact have on a few occasions.

    Edward

  • Just want to say a big thank you for all the time and effort you have put into this case for me. I probably wasn't this easiest person to work with due to being away etc and again I thank you for your patience. Its been a pleasure and I'm very happy that I was pointed in the direction of Bolt Burdon Kemp.

    Military Claims Client

  • I would like  to take this opportunity to thank you for your support and advise.  You are always available when I needed for help and am so grateful for your dedication and hard work. Absolutely it’s been pleasure and a joy working with you.  Am more than happy for the settlement claim offer and without you, it would have been really hard for us get the amount we have been offered. I would definitely recommend you and your firm to friends and family. You have changed my life completely and I thank you from the bottom of my heart. Thanks again Hannah, you are a star.

    Mr Mahomed

  • "I just want everybody to know how patient you were and that you were looking out for my care and got me the best treatment. I’m 99 percent better than I was and with your help and the fact that they admitted they had messed up I have a different outlook on life and I can start my life again. Someone was always on the other end of the phone. Many thanks."

    Ieuan Williams

  • Rhicha and her whole team gave exceptional service.

    Chris Payne

  • "This letter should be regarded as appreciation of the services rendered by Bolt Burdon Kemp solicitors of Islington, London. In particular, the services provided by Philippa Tuckman and Tracy Smith. My case that is still ongoing was referred by the Royal British Legion in 2007. The prompt response and allocation of my solicitor Philippa Tuckman was seamless and timely. Throughout my legal case I have received a highly professional service at all times. Given the nature of my occupation working for the Royal Navy, Philippa and her team have been considerate and extremely understanding. Her knowledge on Her Majesty’s Forces employment and terms of service are beyond reproach. Bolt Burdon and Kemp have consistently provided advice in a manner that is understandable, accurate and reliable. Communication has been maintained both electronically, verbal and written. This communication has always been appropriate to my personal understanding of the legal system. This has permitted me to make informed decisions without pressure or uncertainty. I have always felt that my legal team are available to be asked questions on proceedings without feeling out of place. I have on two occasions made personal recommendations to work colleagues of Bolt Burdon Kemp services. This I believe is testament to their high degree of service provided to me in my case. I cannot recommend Bolt Burdon Kemp solicitors enough and more especially Philippa Tuckman and Tracy Smith."

    Anonymous Military claims

  • “I would like to give a massive thank you to Rhicha Kapila, Charlotte Norton who throughout my claim were absolutely fantastic! From start to finish I was fully informed and totally cared for. I would (and have) recommend Bolt Burden Kemp to anyone requiring legal help.”

    Anonymous Military Negligence

  • Kate Roos was excellent, she kept me updated and fully informed at all times, really fantastic.

    Anonymous

  • “When I was injured, I did not know what legal options I had.  A friend put me in touch with Bolt Burdon Kemp and from that point on it has been a very pleasant experience.  BBK have been professional throughout and handled everything with minimal input required from myself, producing a very positive result”

    Private in the Reserves

  • I have no hesitation in recommending Bolt Burdon Kemp as the legal firm any serving or veteran service personnel should contact in the event that they may need to take legal action against the MOD. From initial contact, to my case being resolved almost 5 years later, every person I have dealt with at the firm, from reception staff to partner level, have been professional, courteous and above all respectful and understanding with all aspects relating to my case.

    Former RAF SNCO

  • You and your team have been excellent, diligent and very patient.  I’d like to say a huge thank you.  Hopefully I never need a solicitor again but if I do it would be a no brainer to proceed with BBK.

    Former Army Officer

  • “I would like to take this opportunity to thank you most sincerely, for all your hard work, guidance and support throughout the past three years. You were always there to listen and to reassure; open to discussion and where necessary, to guide me in the right direction.”  

    Former Corporal, Royal Marines Police Troop

  • Everyone at BBK who worked on my case was very professional.

    AS

  • Ahmed was not only incredibly professional, he was compassionate and approachable and an incredibly understanding individual.  Everything I could have wished for in a solicitor.

    Mr Lloyd Kimpson

  • “Throughout this time you have been professional, approachable and a voice of honesty and reassurance, putting my mind at rest that my case was being handled by the best person for the job.”

    Former Sergeant, Royal Artillery

  • I cannot express my gratitude to you both for all your hard work over the past 3 years, I'm glad I found an amazing team able to take on my case and help me win with an outcome I am over the moon with.

    Former Gunner

  • "Keep up the good work for our soldiers."

    Anonymous Military Claims

  • “Words can never explain how grateful my wife and I have been, are and will be Ahmed for guiding us through a very long, stressful and at times trying case”.

    Sgt, Royal Logistics Corps

  • Claire was fantastic, very professional, available to answer any query I had, whenever I needed her and was always happy to help.

    KA

  • Kate was fantastic, she was more like a friend than a solicitor.  She kept me informed all the way through and was really supportive.  I cannot fault the firm at all.

    Ryan Virot

  • "Dear Rhicha, I am writing to thank you for the outstanding work you did for me. Words cannot give my appreciation justice. You were superbly efficient and professional. Your foresight on all matters on my case was truly remarkable. I owe the success and victory of my case to your dedication and perseverance, which you showed throughout the time that you were handling my case. I also want to express my gratitude towards Phillipa Tuckman and her team, especially you, for their support throughout the journey. It goes without saying that I will always refer to your firm if the need ever arises that I shall need any legal assistance again. Once again my heartfelt thanks and appreciation to you all. God Bless you."

    Ex Rifleman L

  • I would like to offer my sincere thanks to Ahmed and all of the team involved in my case as it was their hard work and sensitive handling of my case that lead to this success.

    Medical Officer, RN

  • Claire was fantastic.  I found that she was always accessible, not just in office hours but she would also email me over the weekend too, and this flexibility was very much appreciated by me.

    Nick Wood

  • You Ahmed have always been professional, meticulous, understanding, adaptable and really gone up and above in all aspect of our case and customer care. Not once during your representation have we had to worry or question your ability, directions, guidance or choice of experts or legal representation, which alleviates some of the worry and burden that litigation brings.

    Sgt RLC Military claims client

  • I feel it would be unfair to single anyone out, every single person I dealt with handled my case quickly, courteously and professionally.  Kate carried that service on.  I have already recommended BBK to two of my friends and will continue to do so.

    Edward

  • Kate was really good, I found her really helpful and she kept me informed at all times.  Overall I was really happy.  The barrister she instructed for me was also really good.

    ST

Read more testimonials

FAQs

How do I make a military claim?

Every military claim is unique and we will carefully consider how we handle your claim in order to ensure the best result for you (insert link to info graph on how to bring a military claim). Here are the six steps involved in making a claim:

1. Get in touch

For a free initial consultation, contact our military team on 020 7288 4800 or complete our online military enquiry form.

2. Funding options

We’ll help you determine the best funding arrangement for you. Read our legal fees guide to find out more about the different funding options available.

3. Military records

We’ll request copies of your service complaint/military medical records and personnel file to identify whether there has been a breach of duty (negligence).

4. Gathering evidence

If your military records support your claim, we will start to gather witness and medical evidence from an independent medical expert to support your claim.

5. Letter of claim

Once we have received supportive evidence, we will write a formal “letter of claim” to the Ministry of Defence. Depending on their response we will negotiate settlement of your claim or we will prepare Court proceedings.

6. Court

If necessary, we will prepare your case for trial and instruct a specialist barrister to represent you. The Judge will decide the outcome.

How do I know if I have a military claim?

We understand that you need to know whether you have a valid claim against the military as soon as possible. Bolt Burdon Kemp’s military compensation specialists will be happy to talk to or email you to see whether your case would benefit from further investigation. If it would, we will then discuss with you the best way of funding your claim. We offer ‘no win no fee’ agreements if your case is suitable.

What are the time limits to bring a claim?

There are strict time limits to bring a military claim. Please do not wait until you have been medically discharged to get advice, because you may then be out of time.

For most negligence claims in England and Wales, you must issue proceedings in the high court or the county court against the defendant(s) within 3 years of your “date of knowledge”. This is the date when a reasonable person in your situation would first have had knowledge:

  • That your injury was significant
  • That your injury was either totally or partly caused by an act (or a failure to act) which you believe was negligent
  • Of the identity of the person (or organisation) who you believe was negligent

The time limit within which to bring a harassment claim under the Protection of Harassment Act is 6 years from the time of the first incident.

For discrimination cases involving military personnel it can be complex to establish a time limit. Please refer to our discrimination page for more information.

You have up to 7 years to bring an Armed Forces Compensation Claim (which is separate from a civil action).

How much will it cost me?

The most common arrangement for armed services claims is a ‘no win no fee’ (also known as a conditional fee) agreement. If you lose, as long as you have stuck to your part of the agreement, you will pay nothing at all. If you win, the defendant will pay the vast majority of your fees and expenses. Read our legal fees guide to find out more about the different funding options available.

Can I also make an AFCS claim?

You can make an application under the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme (AFCS) at the same time as making a negligence claim. In suitable cases, we can help you with the AFCS procedure. [Link to AFCS claims]. The time limits differ to bringing a negligence claim in the courts.

I suffered an injury whilst in combat, can I claim?

We will investigate your individual circumstances to assess if you can. If your injury was caused by decisions made outside of the heat of battle, you might be able to bring a claim. This could include decisions relating to, for example, defective equipment, inadequate kit, and operational failures. It’s best to talk this through with us.

How much compensation will I receive?

If you are successful with your military claim, you will receive compensation for both the injuries and the financial losses that the negligence has caused you to suffer. There are two heads of claim in a civil action:

1. Compensation for pain, suffering and loss of amenity

If you are successful in your claim, you will be able to recover compensation for your injuries, pain, suffering and loss of amenity as a result of the negligence. The amount you recover will depend on how serious your injuries are, how long you take to recover and how the injuries affect you now.

2. Financial losses

The principle behind compensation is to put you in the position you would have been in had the negligence not occurred. You are entitled to claim for all financial losses that flow from the injuries you have sustained as a result of the negligence (not injuries you would have suffered in any event). We will instruct the best military employment experts to help us forecast your military career in discharge cases.

What happens after my military claim is won?

Protecting your means-tested benefits

Your financial circumstances will change if your compensation claim is successful. This means that if you receive any means tested benefits they may be at risk. You can protect your entitlement to your benefits by setting up a trust at the end of the compensation claim. Our specialist solicitors will be happy to advise you about this when your case concludes.

The costs process

The legal costs associated with a compensation claim include solicitor fees, barrister fees, experts’ fees, court fees and fees for obtaining records for your case.

When you win your compensation claim, normal practice is for the Defendant to pay most, if not all of your legal costs. Deciding how much the Defendant should pay can add to the length of the claim. We have a specialist team who work independently from our solicitors to ensure the solicitors’ costs process is dealt with speedily and to your advantage.

Investment advice

Investing compensation requires thought and often specialist advice. We can make a personal recommendation to an appropriate adviser on request.

Is another person responsible for the injury?

To make a successful compensation claim for an injury, disease or illness you must show that it was caused at least in part by someone else’s negligence. In a military compensation case that “someone else” is likely to be the MoD, but it may also be a third party contracted by the MoD to provide services or equipment.

 

If you have been injured in a way that is not connected with your work you will still need advice from a military compensation specialist as your career and livelihood may be affected. We will need to be sure that the person you are suing is able to pay your compensation. As many cases of this sort are against the NHS and contractors used by the MoD, or civilian motorists who are insured, this is rarely a problem.

 

If you have suffered an injury while you are in the military you may feel (or have been told) that it is your own fault. This is often not the case. You should not accept this without further investigation. The systems relied upon, or the training you received, may have been substandard and this may have been the real cause.

Success stories with Bolt Burdon Kemp

Ahmed Al-Nahhas from Bolt Burdon Kemp

Six-figure settlement for delayed ulcerative colitis diagnosis

Our client, a Private in the British Army, suffered a perforated bowel, following a delayed ulcerative colitis diagnosis by army medical professionals. As a result of his injury and subsequent treatment, he was medically discharged and his army career was cut short. We won the case and negotiated a settlement of £575,000.

Read more

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