Civil claims for negligence

If you are injured or killed in service, you or your family can make a personal injury claim for compensation against the Ministry of Defence.

The Ministry of Defence, like all employers, has a duty to protect their employees, for example, by providing them with safe and suitable equipment, a safe workplace and adequate training. If it fails in its duties you or your family may be eligible for compensation.


What you can claim for

Claims can be made for losses such as:

  • personal injury 
  • loss of income, for example, bonuses and loss of allowances
  • future loss of earnings 
  • loss of pension
  • care and assistance
  • adapted housing
  • aids and equipment, for example, prostheses and wheelchairs, and
  • future medical care

Different types of compensation

Don’t be confused, a civil claim is not an Armed Forces Compensation Scheme claim AND can be made in addition to an Armed Forces Compensation Scheme claim.

It is important to be aware that a claim under the AFCS does not compensate all of the above losses meaning the overall award in a civil claim can be significantly higher.

Compensation will not be awarded twice for the same injury meaning any award received under the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme will be deducted from your civil claim.

Time limit

There is generally a three year time limit for most cases involving most personal injury claims in England and Wales. However, different shorter time limits apply if the accident involves travel by air or sea. You should seek specialist legal advice about this. The limits apply from the date of the accident or from the date of knowledge that you have been injured, whichever is the latest.

Court proceedings must be issued within the time limit or the claim will be statute barred meaning the court may refuse to consider your claim

For information about how to make a claim contact The Royal British Legion.

Protect your award

If you receive an award of compensation whether from a civil claim through the courts or via the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme, you need to consider protecting that award and your right to state benefits - see Compensation trust. 

Content provided by Hilary Meredith Solicitors Ltd 


Last reviewed: 26/10/2015