Misdiagnosis & Wrongful Diagnosis Compensation Claims Explained

Mark Benson

Mark Benson

Money Savings Advice Wrongful diagnosis compensation

Whether through NHS treatment or private medical treatment, there are numerous instances of misdiagnosis and wrongful diagnosis. Thankfully, the majority of these instances are caught in later scans and examinations. However, if you have been the subject of a misdiagnosis or wrongful diagnosis which has resulted in illness/injury, then you may well have a claim for compensation.

It is worth noting that not all instances of misdiagnosis/wrong diagnosis will be negligent. There may be cases, such as the coronavirus, where certain medical conditions will have similar symptoms to other conditions.

However, we are all entitled to a high level of care from the medical profession, and if this is not provided, then there may be a case for negligence.

Looking for other information on the Medical Negligence? This guide has info on 'Misdiagnosis claims and Wrongful diagnosis explained'. We have also writen extensively about:

We update all our guides regularly. If you are researching the Medical Negligence and we haven't got an exact guide that helps you, keep coming back as we update daily.

What Is the Measurement for Negligence?

Medical negligence is one of the more complex areas of the personal injury claims market. However, using the Bolam test, negligence is measured by comparing and contrasting the treatment you received against what you could reasonably expect to receive from a similarly qualified medical practitioner.

It may be that the treatment you received was perfectly reasonable under the circumstances in which case it would be difficult to prove negligence.

Can I Claim Compensation for an Incorrect Diagnosis?

Claims relating to an incorrect diagnosis are fairly common in the personal injury claims industry. This type of claim tends to revolve around symptoms that can be similar across a number of different medical conditions.

Sometimes treatment can be delayed, leading to additional health risks, or wrong treatment administered. It would depend upon the specific circumstances, but there is every chance that you could claim compensation for medical negligence.

Can I Claim Compensation for a Total Misdiagnosis?

Unfortunately, many people in the UK will experience a total misdiagnosis of a medical condition at some point in their life. The problem is that despite numerous symptoms, which should, in theory, have alerted the medical practitioner about a particular diagnosis, the patient’s concerns can often be ignored.

Often, it is only further down the line when the condition becomes critical that the correct diagnosis is made. Sometimes this can be too late for the patient resulting in long-term injury/illness or even death. In many of these situations, there will be a case for compensation as a consequence of medical negligence.

Can I Claim Compensation for Late Diagnosis?

Late diagnosis is a very serious issue, especially for those who may have life-threatening conditions such as cancer. If it could be reasonably expected that your symptoms should have indicated a particular diagnosis, then you may have a claim for compensation.

There will be occasions where medical practitioners refuse to carry out in-depth examinations/scans resulting in a late diagnosis. Very often, cases of late diagnosis can be difficult to prove – especially if the symptoms were not prevalent in earlier examinations.

Which conditions are more commonly misdiagnosed?

There are numerous conditions that have been the subject of misdiagnosis, often leading to compensation claims. These include the likes of:-

  • Cancer
  • Head injuries
  • Meningitis
  • Concussion
  • Internal bleeding

While some of these conditions may be difficult to diagnose, it is the responsibility of the medical practitioner to be as thorough as they possibly can.

Why Are So Many Medical Conditions Misdiagnosed?

Over the years we have seen a number of reasons emerge for misdiagnosis, some of which are perfectly valid and others are negligent. Some of the more common reasons for negligence include:-

  • Failure to carry out appropriate tests
  • Failure to recognise symptoms
  • GP negligence
  • Human error
  • Incomplete records
  • Substandard training/supervision

Many people find it difficult to pursue compensation claims against doctors and especially the NHS. However, if your life has been impacted by medical negligence, then not only are you entitled to compensation, but the procedures which put you in that position need to be changed.

Will I Need Professional Advice When Pursuing a Misdiagnosis Claim?

If pursuing any form of medical negligence claim, it is sensible to take professional advice from a personal injury claims company. They will be able to guide you on the process, make you aware of the evidence required, review your chances of success and ensure that your case is presented in the strongest manner.

However, before contacting a personal injury claims company, you will need to gather as much evidence as possible about the alleged negligence.

What Kind of Evidence Do I Require to Pursue a Claim?

While each case is different, there are various pieces of evidence commonplace across the board which include:-

  • Details of your actual treatment
  • Timeline of your medical treatment
  • Details of the misdiagnosis
  • Action taken to address the misdiagnosis
  • Witness statements
  • Copies of medical records
  • Photographic evidence
  • Copies of communications/advice

In some cases, there may be evidence of similar negligence in the past which could highlight a particular weakness for a doctor or medical practitioner. It is also possible that you may require additional medical opinion to clarify what treatment you could reasonably have expected against what was delivered.

Will I Need to Go to Court?

The vast majority of personal injury compensation claims will be settled out of court. It is worth noting that many personal injury claim companies will only take on claims where they estimate a minimum 60% chance of success.

This is because the vast majority of compensation claims are pursued under the “no win no fee” banner. Therefore the personal injury claims company need to be as certain as possible that they have a strong case.

What Is a No-Win, No Fee Arrangement?

In the event that your personal injury claims adviser agrees to take on your case, you will not be liable for any costs they incur under a “no win, no fee” arrangement. There are two reasons for this. Firstly as they believe your case is strong, they will be able to reclaim expenses from the defendant in the event of a successful claim.

Secondly, as a consequence of taking on the risk of the expenses, they will negotiate a “success fee” for proceeding with your claim. Generally, this would see them receiving a minimum of 25% of any compensation award, although the figure could be higher with more complex claims.

Is No Win No Fee Arrangements Fair?

The reality is that without “no win, no fee” arrangements, the vast majority of compensation claims would never be pursued. Very few individuals would be willing or able to risk the potentially high cost of pursuing a claim with no guarantee of success.

As a consequence, negligent third parties would never be held to account, and no procedural/regulatory changes would be made.


Very often, the misdiagnosis, incorrect/late diagnosis, of various conditions can be life-threatening. If you have suffered as a consequence of any of the above issues, then you have every right to compensation. It is only by holding third parties to account that change will be forthcoming.

How Can Money Savings Advice Help You With Making a Medical Negligence Compensation Claim?

Here at Money Savings Advice, we have partnered with some of the UK’s leading Medical Negligence Claims management companies. They have already helped thousands of people claim compensation for the negligence they have incurred, and they can do the same for you.

Choosing an independent claims management company means they won’t proceed with a claim unless they are sure it is in your best interests. They are also regulated by the FCA, which gives you an additional layer of protection.

If you would like to speak to one of these claim management companies who can help you make a compensation claim, then click on the below and answer the very simple questions.

Money Savings Advice Author Mark Benson

Mark Benson

Mark has been writing professionally for over ten years for the financial sector. Having started in the financial world as a stock-broker in central London and then moving to equities trader Mark is one of our senior financial writers who has a vast knowledge of multiple financial sectors.

How does Money Savings Advice work

Money Savings Advice is an independent editorial company providing detailed information about numerous financial niches with the aim of helping consumers make informed financial decisions. We aim to provide hints, tips and techniques to help you make your money work for you. However, we are not perfect, and we accept no liability if anything we write about goes wrong.

  • The information detailed on Money Savings Advice does not constitute financial advice. It is always advised to do your own research to make sure the product/solution we write about fits your circumstances.
  • The aim of Money Savings Advice is to match you with a financial advisor, claims management company or another financial service company that can help you with your financial needs.
  • Money Savings Advice aim to provide the most up to date and accurate information about all financial subjects, and as such we sometimes link to other websites, but we (Money Savings Advice) can’t be responsible for their content.
  • Money Savings Advice is independent and not linked to any financial company.


Who are Money Savings Advice

Money Savings Advice is a trading name of RMM Digital Publishing Ltd. Registered trading address, First Floor, 85 Great Portland Street, London, W1W 7LT. Trading in England and Wales, company number 11550143 with data protection number ZA747669.

Back to top