Accidents and illness abroad
Your holiday is meant to be the one time of the year that you can relax and enjoy yourself. However, all too often, a holiday can be ruined by accidents abroad caused by the lack of care of your holiday provider.
If you have been involved in an accident on holiday abroad, please call us on 0800 014 8727 to discuss your case, or alternatively, fill out the simple form opposite and we will call you back at a time convenient to you.
Can I claim for an accident abroad?
Most holidays claims are made under the Package Travel, Package Holiday and Package Tours Regulations 1992, which provide victims with the ability to claims against their package tour company. This is the case even if the accident abroad was caused by someone for whom the tour company only had an indirect responsibility over.
The Regulations extend to all holiday-goers who were not actually parties to the holiday contract, for example spouses and children.
In order to be able to bring a claim under these regulations, the holiday has to qualify as a “package holiday” which is, as defined in the Regulations at 2(1), requires the following to be satisfied:
- Any two of transport, accommodation and other services ancillary to tourism must be provided;
- Sold or offered for sale at an inclusive price;
- Services to be provided over a period greater than 24 hours, or the accommodation is overnight.
This means that many people, who now build their own holiday (via websites such as www.Expedia.com) are unlikely to be covered by the regulations.
The accident abroad also has to be the fault of the travel agent or one of their representatives (i.e. hotel staff) to be able to make a claim.
The best way to explain this is through a couple of examples.
Whilst on holiday abroad you trip up and suffer an injury due to badly paved areas of the hotel. Due to the fact that the injury occurred whilst in the hotel you would be entitled to make a claim against your tour operator.
Whilst on holiday abroad you contract food poisoning from the hotel restaurant. You are then entitled to make a claim against your tour operator for the illness you encountered abroad as it occurred within an area provided by the tour company.
Whilst on holiday you trip up due to dodgy paving whilst visiting a local town. Unfortunately due to the fact it is not an area that your tour operator has any control over you would not be able to make a personal injury claim against the tour company.
Unfortunately due to the restrictive nature of the above regulations you are rather limited in making personal injury claims for any accidents abroad that you suffer that are not linked to the tour company. This means if you took part in sports or activites that were organised by independent companies in the holiday resort, there may not be any liability under the package tour regulations regime.
You break your arm during a banana boat ride which you organised through an independent company at the resort. If they are not part of the package deal you would not be able to claim against your tour operator for the accident abroad. You could attempt to claim against the company in the country that they are based in but you would then need the assistance of lawyers who are specialised in personal injury in the country that they are based.
What Steps should I take after my accident abroad?
In any personal injury claim you need to be able to show that another person was responsible for the injury that you suffered. (In this instance it would be the travel company/representative).
You need to report the accident to the travel company as soon as is reasonably possible and make sure that it is noted down in the accident book. If there are witnesses you should make sure you get contact details from them so they can be contacted at a later date if required. If there are no witnesses present you should at least try to photograph what in the resort caused the injury to occur.
When you are getting treatment for the injury you should also keep any paperwork you receive for that. For example if you have to pay for any medical treatment whilst abroad you should keep all the receipts covering that.
If you have suffered an accident abroad and you are considering making a claim please do not hesitate to contact us on 0800 014 8727 where one of our team will be able to take you through your situation and advise you on the next step in the process.
They will also be able to get you in contact with one of our qualified personal injury solicitors who will be able to let you know if your case can be taken on on a no win no fee basis.