What constitutes medical negligence in Spanish law? THE patient, the baby or fetus must have suffered physical or moral damages. It is not enough that the doctor made a mistake. A typical example, is the case of a patient who was given the wrong drug during pregnancy. In the event that due to this error, […]
Personal Injury, car accidents, etc.
We receive numerous inquiries regarding the type and amount of compensation that can be claimed in Spain after a road traffic accident, a fall in a shop or office, a stumble in the street due to a pavement in poor condition etc. This is what is known as PERSONAL INJURY. This is a matter of vital importance because the compensations that we could ask or claim for could be very high.
As per Spanish Law, we can also say that there is an obligation to compensate the damage caused by a negligent acts or omissions.
Normally depending on the country and its legislation, there would be a deadline to start a legal action requesting compensation; therefore, it is very important that when suffering any damage caused by another, we contact our lawyer or solicitor to determine the legal deadlines applicable and the next legal steps to be taken.
In general personal injuries in Spain are compensated and determined per the R.D.L. 8/2004 (Ley sobre responsabilidad civil y seguro en la circulación de vehículos a motor) Law of civil liability and motor vehicles insurances and the amounts are annually updated; for this year it was reviewed on the 20th of January 2011 by the Direction of General Insurance.
In Spanish Law, compensation to be received is set and fixed according to the objective criteria fixed in the said RDL 8/2004, so for example the compensation for a death will depend on the age of the victim, number of descendants, etc., and the amount will vary according to other circumstances such as income of the deceased, siblings, dependants, , etc.
In reference to permanent damages suffered as the result of injuries, these are ruled by a points system set out in the RDL 8 / 2004 and the compensation for each point is updated annually and increases with the number of points and the seriousness of the injury. Also it includes a valuation for what is known as temporary disability days (necessary time to heal), for 2011 the value of one hospital day is of 67, 98 € per day, other days out of the hospital but without being able to develop the normal life or activity are set at 55, 27 Euros per day and the rest of the days (those where you have a normal life) are set at 29,75 Euros per day; these quantities could be increased according to the income level of the injured.
For example a man of 19 years old who suffered an accident caused by a window falling in a shop and who lost part of his nose and remained in the hospital for 2 days and has to take 20 days of sick leave without being able to work, and with an annual salary of 15,000 Euros, could claim for a compensation as the following:
First the partial loss of his nose (permanent injury) is valued from 5 to 25 points.
If there is also a slight cosmetic injury this will be valued separately from 1 to 6 points; so we could say that this injury could reach a maximum valuation of 31 points.
For a damage of 31 points the compensation per point would be 1,601.10 Euros .
Taking into account that this could be increased up to 10% for economic damage and considering the annual net income of this example, the compensation could be as much as 1601.10 Euros x 31x 10% = 54,594.10Euros.
As for the days that he will need to be in the hospital without having a normal life, he would be able to claim: 2 days of hospital 2x 67.98 Euros per day, plus 20 days x 55.27 Euros per day, plus 10% economic damage in this case, = 1,365.49 Euros .
This makes an approximate compensation (without going into any other criteria that could change it) of about 55,959.59 Euros .
Should you suffer any kind of accident in Spain and you need our legal assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us.
Car – Road Traffic Accident in Spain. Let us explain in plain language what steps to take if you become involved in a car accident in Spain.
Officially the first thing to do it is to check in what way people have become involved in the accident: drivers, car´s occupants, pedestrians, etc; you should call the Emergency Services number 112, where someone has been injured.
If nobody is injured, and only the vehicles are damaged and/or there are other possible material damages, the drivers involved can signed the AMICABLE ACCIDENT REPORT (PARTE O DECLARACION AMISTOSA ACCIDENTE DE TRAFICO, this is a form that normally your insurance company will give you when you contract the insurance with them, that you must fill in case of this kind of accident.
It is really important to double check the completed names, address, telephone number, insurance company and number of the policy of the other driver, please make sure that you see and check the other driver’s passport-ID and also the insurance details.
Make sure that you put all the relevant details in this REPORT that you will sign, who is the responsible of the accident, how the accident happened, where exactly the accident was, material damages to the cars and in other elements i.e.: street lights, you can also take note of the witnesses: their telephone number, complete name, etc, other relevant information if the road was in a good conditions, etc.
Please make sure that you inform your insurance company and send the report signed the same date or the next one, keep in mind that normally you have a deadline to communicate of 7 days.
Do not forget to keep all the invoices for the injuries that the accident is causing you, i.e: tablets-medicines, garage bill, taxis, etc. in case you can claim for them back.
If someone has been injured you should call the emergency number 112 and the Police or Guardia Civil, which will make a statement-report (ATESTADO) where they will report how the accident was, the consequences of it, who is in their opinion responsible for it, etc.
In these cases this report from the police is really important and normally it is followed by the judge in the court, so make sure, if you can, that the police are made fully aware of all the relevant details and help them to be able to make a complete and accurate report.
Where someone is injured, the doctor´s report is of paramount importance. You should make sure that for your possible injuries you have a report from URGENCIAS for the first treatment and also doctor´s reports from the date of the accident until you leave the hospital and you finish your treatment. You should be able to prove the doctor that treat both of you, where, when, how, etc.
As mentioned above, make sure that you keep evidence of everything also evidence of the costs caused by the accident: tablets, etc..
In these cases you can also sign the PARTE AMISTOSO, where you must also include the injuries, this could be beneficial if the other party admitted liability.
Finally you must be aware that you have a deadline to report the matter to the insurance company; to start the criminal jurisdiction process for a criminal fault or the civil claim.
In the event of an accident, after these first steps, we advise you to contact your lawyer in order to make sure about the legal steps to be taken and also that the compensation that the other party is offering you or asking you for it is accurate and in line with what the law would allow.
If you have any query please do not hesitate to contact us.
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