Claims process

Facing clinical negligence litigation can be a very stressful experience and one which many do not fully understand. This guidance aims to talk you through the process and offer support.

The CSP Charitable Trust recently funded research into cauda equina syndrome and litigation in UK physiotherapy. A survey by the team from Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU) showed that around 11 per cent of physiotherapists face litigation.

The animation above was created by the MMU team and explains what you should do if a claim is made against you.

Frequently asked questions

What do I do if I get a clinical negligence claim against me?

First of all, stay calm. If you receive a lawyer's letter advising you that a claim has been made against you, this is not personal. It may be that many individuals have received a similar letter for the same case. Ninety per cent of all cases investigated by lawyers are dropped and never proceed.

  • If you are employed

    You will be covered by your employer’s vicarious liability insurance. It is therefore important that you speak to them about the claim. Their legal team will respond on your behalf and support you through the process.

  • If you are self-employed or a sole practitioner

    Your professional liability insurance (PLI) provider will cover you in this case. For many, this will be the CSP. Contact our brokers, James Hallam, and follow the PLI notification process. James Hallam will support you and respond on your behalf.

Should I instruct my own lawyer?

No. This is why you have PLI in place. Your insurance will cover all costs and you will not be out of pocket. People often ask ‘Will I lose my house?’ or 'Am I personally liable?' The answer again is no. 

Should I contact the HCPC?

No, the HCPC do not need to be informed. Being the subject of litigation is not the same as a fitness to practice case.

We understand that this is a stressful time and one of our professional advisers can talk you through the process. Please get in touch with our Professional Advice Service by contacting the CSP enquiries team

We can also work with our networks to connect you with a physiotherapist who has been through a similar experience.

Read about work that has been done by Manchester Metropolitan University exploring the lived experiences of UK physiotherapists in relation to cauda equina syndrome (CES) and litigation.

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