Amputation and Limb Loss Compensation

Our specialist amputation claims solicitors can help you claim compensation and support you with access to care and rehabilitation.

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Guiding you through all aspects of amputation and limb loss compensation

On average there are over 4,000 lower limb amputations a year, which account for 81% of all amputations.

This means that the NHS cares for over 5,000 new amputees a year and spends approximately £60m on their care.

Many amputations are needed where a limb has become infected, or where gangrene has set in, and following complications of diabetes. 

When you suffer an amputation, your life is changed and that of those around you. 

In some cases, negligent medical care may end up with you needing an amputation which may otherwise have been avoided. You therefore may have a legal claim for compensation for your amputation injury.

It is important to choose a lawyer who has proven experience of helping other people with an amputation injury, as they need to understand the unique challenges for someone living with an amputation.

At Higgs LLP we prioritise your early rehabilitation needs and help with securing early interim payments wherever possible. We also have an in-house client support manager who can help support you with a wide range of social needs. We also offer ‘no win no fee’ agreements to fund your claim, which means that there is no financial risk to you if you lose.

Start your amputation compensation claim

Amputation claims due to medical negligence

NHS Resolution stats: 605 patients have won legal cases after negligent care resulted in amputation.

The NHS release annual data on its performance, and the latest report confirms that it paid £189 million in compensation over the last five years, to over 600 patients who had needed an amputation because of negligent medical care.  This is an average 120 people a year who need the surgical removal all or part of a limb because of NHS failings.  This could be following an error by a surgeon, or even your GP not making a correct diagnosis.

What is an amputation

An amputation is the removal of a part of the body, such as a foot or hand.   This is often done by a surgeon because that part is no longer viable and when operating, they will try to save as much of the body part as possible. 

However, an amputation can also happen in a serious accident.  When this happens, it is called a traumatic amputation and surgery will still be required to try to ensure the best outcome for you. 

What are the effects of amputation?

There are many effects of an amputation, and if you have an amputation injury claim, we work hard to help you deal with all the effects of an amputation on your life.

We prioritise rehabilitation for our clients from the very outset and, wherever possible, select the best rehabilitation providers to work with you to identify what treatment you require. We will appoint a case manager, who will be a health professional with expertise in managing amputation injury, to carry out an Immediate Needs Assessment.

Typical types of treatment include:

  • Physical therapies - work on you continuing to use the rest of your limbs and general fitness, as well as helping to prepare a stump for the fitting of an artificial limb, known as a prosthesis.
  • Occupational therapy – focuses on ensuring you can meet certain daily living skills and regain as much independence as possible by adapting to your home environment. Treatment often involves learning coping strategies to make daily living easier, like showering, preparing food, getting dressed, and recommending aids and appliances that may help you.
  • Prosthetist – will design and then make an artificial limb best suited for your needs, taking into account the importance of its function and how it looks. They will also help advise you on how to use and maintain the limb. The cost of obtaining a prosthesis is often included as part of your claim in addition to the replacement costs for the rest of your life.
  • Psychological therapies – it is very easy to suffer from low mood and other signs of depression following an amputation injury, so this is an essential support for the amputee and family. It can help prevent or cope with feelings of low mood and depression, which, if left untreated, could in themselves be disabling and reduce the effect of your physical rehabilitation.
  • Adapting or buying a home more suited to your needs
  • Adapting or buying a more suitable vehicle
  • Employment rehabilitation
  • Recreational therapy.

After this assessment, your case manager will coordinate your rehabilitation package and work with you and other professionals to identify your required treatment. If your assessment makes recommendations, we will advise you on how we can help you access and fund them to get the support and care you need. Our specialist amputation injury case managers will look after your interests to help get you all the support you need as soon as possible. We focus on early rehabilitation and interim payments wherever possible.


After an amputation, you will need a prosthesis. Prosthetics vary widely depending on their intended purpose. Some are designed to be functional, others for cosmetic purposes, while others are specially adapted to certain sports.

On the NHS, the prosthetics are usually provided around 6 – 8 weeks after your surgery to allow time for your surgical stump to heal. The stump needs to fit comfortably with the prosthesis. The NHS provision is usually quite basic. It will often focus on safety rather than function. There are other drawbacks to the NHS service, such as the lack of clinical time with a patient and the long time between appointments. The lack of NHS funds limits the pool of available prosthetic products, so, for example, microprocessor feet are not available, and adults cannot get sports limbs, although children may be able to.

If you have an amputation claim, we may be able to access interim funds for you to trial or purchase more suitable prostheses. These could include sports prostheses for running, cycling, climbing, skiing, snowboarding and water sports. Or you may prefer a prosthesis with a microprocessor. Apart from personal choice, your weight and fitness can impact your prostheses options, but there may also be other clinical factors.

For example, you may have a problem preventing you from using a prosthesis if your stump is too short to take a prosthesis. You may be in too much pain using the prosthesis because of skin friction or even develop a tumour on a nerve ending called a neuroma, which makes using a prosthesis too painful. Sometimes, a bony spur can grow on the amputated bone, which again prevents the use of a prosthesis. Another effect of amputation may be phantom limb pain, where you experience pain in the part of your body which has been amputated, which will need medical support for you to manage.

If, for whatever reason, you are unable to use a more traditional prosthesis, you may be more suited to an osseointegration solution. This is when a metal shaft is surgically placed into the stump, and the prosthesis can then be fixed to it. This is a major operation and needs to be carefully considered. It is currently unavailable on the NHS but could be considered part of an amputation injury claim in appropriate cases.


When looking at your prosthesis needs, it is important to consider your psychological needs and get appropriate support. Around a third of amputees will suffer depression. This is unsurprising when you have suffered a life-changing injury, often in traumatic circumstances.

You are coming to terms with the fact that your body is no longer whole. You may have feelings of embarrassment, low self-esteem, and body image issues. You may also suffer a range of feelings to do with your loss, such as anger, grief, and frustration. You may also have negative feelings around your loss of independence or social isolation. All of these, in turn, could harm your close relationships.

Your mental health is a significant part of any serious injury, but in the case of an amputation, you need good psychological support so that you can engage successfully with your rehabilitation and use of your prostheses. This is why in an amputation claim, we will look to put in place the appropriate level of psychological support.

Other effects and interim payments

Other effects following an amputation can be a loss of income, if you are unable to return to any work, or are only able to return to work which pays less than you used to earn. Your home may no longer be suited to your needs because, if you are a lower limb amputee, you will need to use a wheelchair when you are resting your leg. So, you may need to move to ground floor accommodation or make other adaptations so that it is accessible for you.

Other effects will be how you travel, so you may need adaptations to return to driving or riding. This will often be important for you to return to work, but also to be able to access the community.

Due to the cost of your various needs that you may have with accommodation, travel adaptations, or covering lost income in an amputation claim, we always prioritise early interim payments wherever possible.


Our accreditations

Head Injury Solicitor 2024
SIA Trusted Partner
SRA Accreditatio

"Highly experienced. Can deliver on small to very large cases. Down to earth lawyers who connect with the client easily"

Legal 500

"Jenny Tetlow represented me in a clinical negligence claim on behalf of my late father. Jenny was an absolute pleasure to work with, always there to answer questions, very responsive and always provided regular updates without being asked. A really refreshing experience compared to some other lawyers."

Review Solicitors

Diabetic amputations

If you have diabetes, your body does not control your blood glucose levels.  This may be because your pancreas does not create insulin to regulate the glucose, or because your body is resistant to insulin or cannot produce enough insulin.  No matter the cause, diabetes must be controlled by restricting the intake sugars and refined carbohydrates and, in more serious cases, by injecting artificial insulin.

The problem is that it is still difficult to regulate blood glucose levels to avoid high peaks.  When blood glucose is high this can damage blood vessels and nerves. 

Your retina is particularly prone to damage, so harming your eyesight or even causing blindness.  The feet are also prone to harm because if you have a wound, you may not feel it due to nerve damage, and it may not heal well due to the blood vessel damage.  If not managed properly, this can lead to chronic ulcers and infections.  In turn, if these are not managed, you toes or even your foot may need amputation.

Funding a claim

When you speak with us, we will advise you on the best way to fund your claim.  It may be that you have existing legal expenses cover.  However, if not, we can help fund your claim with a ‘no win, no fee’ agreement if we think your claim has prospects of succeeding, which means there is no financial risk to you if you lose.

No win no fee claims

This means if your claim is unsuccessful, you pay nothing; there are no hidden costs.  Our focus is on supporting you, not on profits.

What is the role of an amputations claim solicitor?

Our medical negligence solicitors are specialists in amputation compensation claims. They understand how stressful it can be to make a legal claim for your amputation, while at the same time trying to adapt to limb loss; they also understand the impact that this has on your family.  

We believe that early intervention is the best way to help you maximise your chances of rehabilitation, so we focus, where possible, on arranging case manager support and interim payments, whilst we work to secure the best overall outcome for you and your family.  We always put you at the centre of everything we do.

As we are a broad-based practice we can provide holistic support and work with our colleagues in other legal disciplines to support your case, if needed. It means you will benefit from a seamless, one-team approach. You are in safe hands.

We are:

  • One of three law firms selected by The Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham to support patients at the hospital as part of the 4 Trauma 4 Patients support service
  • One of three firms selected by the University Hospital of Coventry and Warwickshire operated by Cardinal Management to support patients as part of the Major Trauma Signposting project
  • One of three firms selected by the Birmingham Women’s and Children’s Hospital operated by Cardinal Management to support patients as part of the Major Trauma Signposting project
  • Accredited members of Headway’s Head Injury Solicitors Directory
  • Spinal Injuries Association trusted legal partner for the West Midlands
  • Serious Injury Guide signatories
  • Members of:
    • The Motor Accident Solicitors Society
    • Association of Personal Injury Lawyers
    • Birmingham Law Society
    • Approved Law Society Personal Injury Panel and Law Society Clinical Negligence Panel
    • Approved by Association for Victims of Medical Accidents
    • Recognised in Chambers and Partners Directory
    • Recommended by the Legal 500 as leading personal injury and clinical negligence lawyers.

"Her focus is always on client care, and she is always looking out for the needs of clients and their families following significant injuries. Her focus on the client is inspiring."

Legal 500

"Highly experienced. Can deliver on small to very large cases. Down to earth lawyers who connect with the client easily"

Legal 500

Evidence needed to make a claim

The evidence needed in each claim will vary, depending on the circumstances. For medical negligence claim, as well as your statement as to what went wrong with your medical care, we have to obtain all of your medical records and the get expert medical opinions to support your case that your medical care was below the expected standard. 

We will also need evidence of your financial losses and expenses, as well as expert medical evidence on the extent of your injuries.

Time limits

Most claims must begin within three years of the incident that caused your amputation or when you reasonably became aware that someone’s negligence had caused your injury. In a medical negligence setting, you may not know of a doctor’s negligence until after the treatment.  However, if a case involves a child, the three years limitation period does not begin to run until their 18th birthday.

How long does it take to claim?

How long a claim takes will vary, due to a number of factors.  We need to gather the appropriate expert medical evidence on your injuries and your future needs, such as accommodation, prostheses, care and equipment, as well as the impact on your capacity to work.  This may take a time to assess with certainty. 

The timescale can also be impacted by the conduct of the party you are claiming against; if they are cooperative from the start that helps in reaching an earlier settlement of your claim. 

However, if they contest the claim and court action is needed, this extends the time to conclude your claim.  We recognise that claims can take a long time, which is why we focus on early intervention and interim payments whenever possible.

"A well-established firm with long-standing clinical negligence experience. Charlotte Measures is excellent. Knowledgeable, calm and sympathetic with clients"

Legal 500

"Clare Langford is a fantastic solicitor working on really complicated cases"

Chambers and Partners

Amputation payouts 

Compensation awards are broken down into a number of categories.  The award for the pain, suffering and loss of amenity, sometimes called genera damages, will vary depending on the extent of a person’s injury and its impact on their life.  This is assessed individually, based on the medical evidence. Here are the brackets of likely awards for amputation.

  • Amputation of both arms - £265,000 - £330,000
  • Amputation of one arm - £105,000 - £150,000
  • Amputation of both hands - £154,000 - £221,000
  • Amputation of one hand - £105,000 - £120,000
  • Leg Amputations - £107,000 - £297,000
  • Foot Amputations - £92,000 - £221,000
  • Amputation of all toes - £40,000 - £61,000
  • Amputation of big toes - c. £34,000

Why choose us as your amputation claims lawyers

Our team of solicitors have the knowledge, experience, and proven track record to help you make a successful amputation claim.

Our team are recognised and accredited in the legal directories and across many organisations, including being on the Law Society Clinical Negligence panel, Action Against Medical Accidents panel, Headway, and the Spinal Injury Association trusted partnership.

Our team has an excellent reputation for its work on a broad range of high-value and complex clinical negligence claims. 

Each team member has particular expertise, with a range of specialisms, including severe birth injuries, spinal cord injuries, brain injuries and fatal claims.

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There are a number of benefits to which you might be entitled if you meet the requirements of the benefit, which may include meeting means testing criteria or showing a certain level of disability.  Details of benefits to help the disabled are shown here. If you have an injury claim, we can provide more detailed support with benefits, but if you need more help now you can contact the Citizens Advice Bureau for free advice.

Compensation awards are broken down into a number of categories.  The award for the pain, suffering and loss of amenity, sometimes called genera damages, will vary depending on the extent of a person’s injury and its impact on their life.  This is assessed individually, based on the medical evidence. 

The brackets of likely awards for leg amputations is £107,000 - £297,000. 

In addition to this award, the compensation can include amounts to cover the cost of suitable accommodation, care needs, equipment and aids, lost earnings, lost pension and many other losses, where they are reasonably required.  In amputation injury cases, these losses will often make up the bulk of the overall compensation.

A number of charities provide specific support for people living with an amputation.  These are the Limbless Association, Steel Bones, Parasport, ABLEize, Douglas Bader Foundation and Limb Power. 

  • Limbless Association is the leading UK charity for people with limb-loss. They offer all their services for free, ensuring that no one is ever without the information and support they need, regardless of their ability to pay.
  • Limb Power aid rehabilitation and improve the quality of life by enabling participation in recreational and competitive sports and arts.  Participating in sport can play an immeasurable role in the emotional, social and psychological well-being of an individual.
  • They receive many calls from people wanting to learn to run, cycle, swim or play football.
  • ABLEize is the most viewed UK disability resource offering a collection of disability, mobility and health websites and social media pages in the UK.  ABLEize was born out of the frustration of its founder, a disabled wheelchair user following poor internet search results.
  • ABLEize promotes quality, trusted information, advice, products and services as well as education, disabled support groups, local clubs and sports and much more.  It is also the ideal platform to promote mobility, daily living aids and disability shopping sites.
  • The Douglas Bader Foundation exists to advance and promote the physical, mental and spiritual welfare of persons who are born without or have lost one or more limbs, or otherwise physically disabled.  They achieve this through giving advice or helping out financially through Bader Grants. Their Bader Braves programme offers children experiences that help build confidence and encourage team work and participation.

If you are only eligible for NHS healthcare because you do not have an injury claim, then you will have to contact the NHS service for details of which protheses they can provide.

If you do have an injury claim, then we would instruct a suitable expert to assess which available prosthetics may be most suited to your needs.  This could include considering micro-processor, sports and waterproof prosthetics.  It may also be possible to arrange a trial to see if a suggested prosthesis suits your personal needs.  In other cases, if a more standard prosthesis is unsuitable, it may also be appropriate to consider osseointegration where a metal rod is surgically implanted into the stump, to which the prosthesis is then fixed.

This will depend on whether it can be proven that your medical care fell below an acceptable standard, and that that substandard care then caused your amputation.  This in turn will depend on whether expert medical experts are willing to provide opinions in support of your case.

Meet the amputations claim team