Botox personal injury claims solicitors.
Botox is now a common cosmetic procedure, with estimates placing the annual number of Botox procedures globally into the millions (nearly 7 million procedures were recorded in 2015 and the numbers increase annually).
It is the unfortunate case that some of these procedures go wrong, so if you have been injured as a result of a Botox procedure, it is likely that you can make a Botox personal injury claim.
Contact MG Legal’s team of expert personal injury solicitors to discuss how we can help you on a no win no fee agreement to ensure you have access to the justice you deserve.
What is Botox treatment and how can it go wrong?
The name “Botox” is a portmanteau of the main ingredient “Botulinum Toxin”. Botulinum is a poisonous by-product of Clostridium, which is also known as a type of “food poisoning” bacteria. The toxin, when injected into the body, causes a paralysis and indeed, before 2002, when it became a cosmetic product, Botox was used to treat a variety of medical conditions including, facial spasms or “twitches”, disorders of the eyelid, and lazy eye.
It is a common misconception that Botox removes lines and wrinkles by causing paralysis. When used properly, Botox relaxes the muscles which can crease the skin and so, this improves the appearance by making the whole face less ‘tense’ meaning the skin is not as contracted.
Whilst incredibly effective as a medication, the fact that it is a toxin and in sufficient doses can be deadly, as well as being a paralytic, also means that using this treatment improperly can have serious consequences. In cosmetic treatments, the injection is being administered to the face and so correct needle technique and injection procedure also needs to be followed. So, choosing the right practitioner to administer your Botox is incredibly important.
What are the consequences of badly administered Botox?
Like any type of cosmetic treatment, Botox can have negative consequences and so, any reputable cosmetologist or beauty therapist will know how to avoid these, including doing a small “patch” test to check for allergic reactions, sourcing their botox from a reputable supplier and being fully trained in the techniques to apply the treatment.
The consequences of badly administered botox can include:
• Allergic reactions
• Paralysis of the facial muscles
• Facial Swelling
• Impaired vision
• Speech problems
• Psychological Injuries
The above are the most common injuries arising from Botox treatments, that MG Legal's personal injury specialists have dealt with. However, if you believe you have suffered any kind of injury or adverse reaction from Botox, our specialist personal injury solicitors will be able to discuss this with you and identify the correct medical expert to assess your injuries.
What should I look for in someone who provides botox?
As of 2015 Health Education England (HEE) published their guidelines for Qualification Requirements for Delivery of Cosmetic Procedures. HEE are part of the NHS and so are the leading authority in this country for this type of regulation. To perform basic Botox, to the upper face only, practitioners are required to have a Level 6 Qualification, which is either a specific NVQ at Level 6 in Delivery of Cosmetic Procedures or a similar qualification from a fully qualified University Graduate, usually known as having a Bachelors Degree. This should not be mistaken for those with Foundation Degrees or Diplomas, generally achieved with one to two years University study and which fall into the Level 5 category and below.
For any more advanced procedures, HEE expects practitioners to have a Level 7 qualification, which is equivalent to a Post-Graduate University Qualification, such as a Masters Degree.
If the person administering your Botox cannot show these qualification (most will have them proudly displayed on their wall) it is highly likely they are unqualified and with this comes the likelihood that they are also uninsured for any negative consequences.
It is also highly common for practitioners of this sort to rent a room in a more reputable beauty salon or similar business and so, always ensure you check the identity of any business and credibility of the person administering your treatment.
Finally, always ensure that the practitioner administering your Botox is insured. The consequences of negligently administered Botox can be dramatic and without insurance, any compensation, including the cost of any rectification treatment, is only recoverable against the individual or business who performed the treatment. If an individual does not have any money or assets, or if the business ceases to trade or has not assets, despite being entitled to compensation, you may not receive any if the fault party cannot afford to pay it to you.
What should I do if I have suffered injury as a result of Botox?
Firstly, visit your GP or local Walk-in Centre, or if your symptoms are severe, your local Hospital’s Emergency Department. Your immediate health comes first and early treatment can offer the best chance of avoiding or at least minimising long-term consequences. Your expert personal injury solicitor at MG Legal, will be able to obtain copies of your medical records later as part of the evidence for your claim.
Take photographs of the affected area - whilst you may not want to do so, this is vital evidence of the immediate aftermath of the treatment and in several months’ time, when your injuries have faded, this photographic evidence is vital to prove your claim.
Keep hold of any documentation you were given, such as consent or advice forms, aftercare booklets and any other booklets or pamphlets you have. These can provide useful evidence as to the procedures and safeguards that the practitioner or business have in place and make it easier to identify any failings.
Obtain the details of the practitioner who carried out the treatment and also of their employer and insurer if at all possible. No matter how valid your claim, it is all for nothing if you cannot identify and locate the fault party and so, obtaining this information can be vital, especially if the practitioner is a small business or sole-trader who can dissolve the business or move premises at short notice. If their insurance or other information is displayed on a wall, take a clear photograph of it or take down the basic details such as name, insurer’s identity and any policy number.
Take the details of any witnesses, whether family or friends, especially those who may have been with you at the time of the treatment or who saw you immediately afterwards. A viable Defence to claims is sometimes to point to other external factors and so witnesses who can verify that you have done nothing else at that time which could have caused your injuries.
Write down what happened as soon as you can, such as whether a patch test was done, what questions you were asked and anything else you think might help you later on such as something you thought was done wrong or anything you thought might have contributed to your injuries.
How does my Botox personal injury claim work?
Your dedicated Botox personal injury claim solicitor will need to assess your claim and your evidence, which is done usually in the following order:
Firstly, your expert solicitor will examine the evidence you provide both directly and with any supporting documentation or evidence as detailed above. From this point, they will decide whether there appears to be any viable way to make a claim so that you know from day one, that you have a case.
Second, your solicitor will write to the negligent practitioner, setting out the reasons for your claim, what they believe was done wrong, and at least the basics as to what we believe can be done to compensate you and to assist you in your recovery.
Thirdly, medical evidence will be obtained, this will include a report from an expert cosmetologist or similar discipline of expert should liability, also known as breach of duty, not be admitted at that point. The expert will examine the procedure followed, review any relevant medical notes and highlight where they believe the Botox practitioner failed in their duty of care to you. Coupled with this is a “Condition and Prognosis” report which will focus on your injuries and how you are expected to recover from them. Combined, this constitutes expert witness evidence in support of your claim. Your personal injury solicitor at MG Legal will be able to use these and reference books like the Judicial Studies Board Guidelines to place a value on the claim (General Damages) and to accompany this with your financial losses (Special Damages) to build a complete picture of a reasonable settlement.
At that point, we would ideally have received an admission of liability and so be in a position to calculate your damages. This occurs in the vast majority of cases, around 85% of claims that MG Legal, your Botox personal injury solicitors accept. In the remaining few cases, it can be necessary to issue proceedings in the County Court. Whatever stage your claim settles, rest assured that MG Legal’s expert team have been here before many times and we know exactly how to steer your case towards the best, swiftest settlement possible.
How is my compensation calculated?
Your compensation, also known as Damages, come in two categories. General Damages, also known as an award for “Pain, Suffering and Loss of Amenity” is based primarily on medical evidence detailing your injuries and any recovery period or long term impact and your own comments as to how your injuries have affected you. These are calculated, initially, using a book known as the Judicial Studies Board Guidelines (JSB) which is updated around once every two years using most recent awards for all conceivable types of injuries. You will see this book on the desk or in the briefcase of pretty much every personal injury solicitor, barrister and judge who deals with personal injury cases.
If it is not possible to agree a value for your damages based on the JSB, specific case-law from previous cases can be considered as well. Often this is drawn together in a “Counsel’s Opinion” which is a specially ordered advice from a barrister. Barristers are independent and whilst they have a duty to each client, their view is often considered to be more impartial.
The other part of your claim is known as Special Damages, which are any other financial losses linked to your claim. Usually these include Lost Earnings, Care Costs, Medication Costs, Travel Expenses and in the case of more serious injuries, longer term implications like future Lost Earnings, future care needs and adaptation of homes or the purchase of a new home.
If it is not possible to agree what is known as a global (overall) settlement with the fault party, the final decision lies with a Judge who will hear everyone’s evidence, including from medical experts in higher valued cases, before deciding the sum that the fault party must pay to you.
Who pays my legal fees if I make a Botox personal injury claim?
MG Legal’s expert Botox personal injury claims solicitors believe that if access to justice should not entail up-front costs, legal jargon, and confusing conversations with fussy solicitors who don’t live in the real world. So, if you have suffered a personal injury during a Botox treatment, as a result of someone else’s negligence, then you should not have to pay up front legal costs to get access to justice. MG Legal are proud to say that our expert personal injury solicitors accept all personal injury claim on a no win no fee basis, with no financial risk to our clients.
Why choose MG Legal for my Botox personal injury compensation claim?
At MG Legal, each solicitor takes a personal interest in each case and we have a dedicated department dealing with negligence claims against beauticians. Our team is well versed in the commonly quoted pieces of Case Law such a Bolam v Friern and Montgomery v Lanarkshire, as well as having extensive experience of dealing with all types of injury and settling claims successfully at all stages of the process. Whilst it is highly unlikely that your claim will run all the way to Court, (the vast majority settle without the need for Court proceedings at all), we are not afraid of a denial of liability and our success rate, which exceeds 99%, is testament to the fact that when we take a claim on, you really do have the best chance of successly obtaining an award of personal injury compensation. We believe that our confidence in our own ability is demonstrated by the fact that every personal injury claim we accept is on the basis of a Conditional Fee Agreement, also known as a no win no fee agreement, which means that if we do not succeed for our client, we do not get paid for our work.