The best simple advice for accidents abroad
Accidents that occur abroad can be really scary. With potential language barriers and different legal systems, it can be understandable if people tend to want to forget about the accident – and quite often the holiday – altogether.
However, there are some simple steps which, when you are aware of them, will make claiming for an accident that happened abroad far less hassle than you might think. Our checklist outlines some of the best advice for what to do if you are injured or involved in an accident abroad.
Common types of accidents that tend to occur abroad and usually when on holiday, include:
- Slipping or tripping, especially where a surface is slippery by a pool
- Road traffic accidents, when driving or a passenger abroad
- Food poisoning from the food served in your hotel
- Diving injuries (especially when diving into shallow pools)
- Theme park or water park injuries
- Skiing or snowboarding injuries
- Falls from balconies
Accident abroad checklist
- Take down the details of any witnesses
- Get medical treatment
- Gather evidence
- Report the accident to the police
- Report the accident to your tour operator’s local representative and the manager of the hotel that you are staying in
- Keep and gather together all of your booking documents
- Act quickly when you return from your holiday
One of the things that puts people off claiming for an accident abroad is that they don’t have any strong evidence. It’s extremely difficult to try to find a witness to your accident if all you know about them is that they were sitting by the pool when you slipped over. Ask people who saw what happened to give you their contact details, so that if you need a witness, you can call or email them when you’ve returned home.
Obviously, if your injuries are severe this should be your utmost first priority. For anything from food poisoning to a car crash, make sure that you get treatment from a health centre or hospital. This is important, not just for your wellbeing, but so that you will have official records to corroborate your injury, which you will need to request to take home with you. If you have to pay for any form of treatment, make sure that you keep the receipts and any documentation relating to this too, as it will form part of your claim.
Take photographs and videos of the area where your accident took place. Make sure that you include as much detail as possible about what caused your accident, for example defective flooring in the case of a slip or trip, or food that has been left out for hours if you had food poisoning.
This is essential for accidents where serious injuries were sustained, for example at a theme or water park, or when involved in a road traffic accident.
It will be company and tour operator policy to record complaints, accidents and injuries in most cases, so it helps as part of the evidence for your case to have made the hotel or your tour operator aware of your accident as soon as you can.
This is extremely important, as depending on your reason for being abroad and in the case of holidays, what type of holiday it was, you may be able to claim for accidents abroad in UK courts, rather than through the courts in the country where the accident occurred.
Don’t delay on making a claim with a solicitor when you return from holiday. There are different time limits for claims depending on the type of holiday, the type of accident and where you were when the accident took place. Claim time limits can be 1, 2 or 3 years from the date of the accident, or from the date that your holiday started, so speaking to a solicitor as soon as possible ensures that you don’t miss out on claiming.
Specialist solicitors for accidents abroad
If you, or a member of your family, have been injured following an accident abroad either when working abroad or on holiday, we can help you make a claim. Our team of expert personal injury lawyers, your first meeting with us, whether at home, the hospital or at our offices, will always be completely free and you can reach us 24 hours a day on 0800 634 1777.
For more information about making a claim for an accident abroad, contact us at our offices in Leicester, Hinckley and Market Harborough using the numbers below: