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Never Events Claims


No win, no fee Never Events compensation claims

No win, no fee

You can be represented by a highly-experienced medical negligence lawyer at no upfront cost to you. Under our No Win No Fee agreement you only pay a pre-agreed percentage of the compensation awarded if your case is successful.

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What is a Never Event?

What is a Never Event?

A ‘Never Event’ is, as the name implies, a medical mistake or event which should never occur.

Never Events are recognised as serious incidents which are ‘wholly preventable’ and should never happen if the correct procedures are followed and preventative measures taken.

They include surgical equipment being left inside patients, operations being carried out on the wrong limbs – or even the wrong patients – incorrect implants being fitted and the incorrect use of medicines.

If you have been told a mistake in your treatment has been recorded as a ‘Never Event’ – or if your case has been subject to a Serious Incident Review (also known as a Patient Safety Incident) or investigation, we would advise speaking to our expert team about making a claim for compensation.


The most common 'Never Events'

The most common 'Never Events'

The most common mistakes made which are classed as ‘Never Events’ are ‘wrong site surgery’ and ‘retained foreign objects following procedures’.

NHS England statistics show that hundreds of these mistakes are made in hospitals each year, in some cases causing serious long-term suffering and harm.

Wrong site surgery can include procedures being performed on the wrong patient, or at the wrong area of a patient, such as taking a biopsy from the wrong organ, or injecting or carrying out a procedure on the wrong limb or area of the body.

Retained foreign objects include surgical instruments, swabs and vaginal swabs and packing, and guide wires being left inside patients after medical procedures.


'Never Event' claims specialists

'Never Event' claims specialists

Our experienced medical negligence team at Hudgell Solicitors has dealt with many claims of this nature and our experts are on hand to advise you every step of the way in pursuing a claim for compensation.

We secured damages for patient Phillip Ivory when a surgeon with over 30 years’ experience operated on the wrong part of his arm, and secured an apology from a Hospital Trust for a client after a surgical swab was left in her following an operation to remove cancer.

Our legal team also secured damages for a woman after laser surgery on her eye was mistakenly carried out too low, leaving her with a ‘large open hole’ and unable to bear sunlight.

Compensation was also secured for a first-time mother who was left in agonising pain after ‘packing’ used to stem bleeding after the birth had been accidentally left inside her for five months.

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Serious Incident Reports (Patient Safety Incidents)

Serious Incident Reports

Hundreds of cases each year

There have been between 400 and 500 Never Events recorded by NHS England each year since 2015. The only exception was in the period covering 2020-21, when there were 364, although a reduction of medical procedures carried out during the COVID-19 pandemic may explain this decline.

A provisional list of Never Events reported as occurring between April 1, 2022 and March 31, 2023 highlighted a total of 410 serious incidents to be investigated.

At Hudgell Solicitors, we are highly experienced in securing compensation for patients who suffer as a result of such errors, so if you or a loved one has fallen victim to a Never Event and suffered as a result, talk to our team about pursuing a clinical negligence claim for compensation.

If your case has been subject to a Serious Incident Report or Patient Safety Incident investigation and you would like to discuss it further, we are here to help.


Client stories

Client stories

Ensuring you get the never event compensation you deserve

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Joanne at seaside

Woman left unable to bear sunlight after laser surgery error

A woman has been awarded damages after laser surgery on her eye was mistakenly carried out too low, leaving her with a ‘large open hole’ and unable to bear sunlight. Joanne Hartley has been left so sensitive to light in her right eye that she now has to wear wraparound sunglasses when watching television or […]

How to make a never events claim

How to make a claim

Make a claim in six easy steps

Step 1

Free Initial Advice

Call us, request a callback or complete our online claim form and we will assess whether we think you have a claim.

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Step 2


We will help you to decide how best to fund your claim. Usually, we will be able to offer you a No win, No fee agreement.

Step 3

Obtain Medical Records & Medical Reports

We will request copies of your medical records and instruct appropriate medical experts to prepare reports confirming whether your care was negligent and how this caused you injury.

Step 4

Letter Of Claim

We will send a letter to your healthcare provider with details of your claim, setting out why we think your case was negligent and how this caused you injury.

Step 5

Prepare Claim Valuation

We will put together a schedule of loss setting out the losses you have incurred and the extent of the injuries you have sustained.

Step 6

Negotiate Settlement

We will send all the evidence to your opponent inviting their settlement proposals. If we cannot agree a reasonable settlement, we will prepare court proceedings.

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Feel free to give us a call or begin your claim online

Alternatively, call us now on 01482787771

Our client reviews

Our client reviews

We’re always committed to getting the optimum outcome for you.

Susan Richardson dealt with my case and I must say she made the whole process run smoothly and kept me informed at any junction along the way, she took the time to explain my choices, and gave me the time to consider things with no pressure what so ever. It was like having someone I had known for ages helping me rather than a company which is very settling during upsetting times. So a big thank you to Susan a credit to Hudgells solicitors.
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Very attentive and polite lawyers. My lawyer Michelle Tebbutt. Helps me understand everything correctly and answers all questions. Many thanks to her and her helpers.
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I spoke with Olivia today and she was amazing! Olivia made sure I knew everything regarding the process to follow and put me at ease. Outstanding customer service.
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Danielle Daysley
A great first meeting with Paul McClorry. Excellent manner, patient and kind. Listened and then suggested a plan. I cannot thank him enough. Brilliant customer Service
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Deborah Johnston
Chris Trousdale was the one of the youngest miscarriages of justice victims as a result of the Post Office Horizon scandal.
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Which medical treatment errors are classed as Never Events?

Never Events may occur in a variety of situations. As part of its reporting, there are 15 types of Never Events which were defined by the NHS in an updated list in February 2018.
These are defined by NHS England as;

  1. Wrong site surgery
    An invasive procedure performed on the wrong patient or at the wrong site (eg wrong knee, eye, limb). The incident is detected at any time after the start of the procedure.
  2. Incorrect implant/prosthesis
    Placement of an implant/prosthesis different from that specified in the procedural plan, either before or during the procedure. The incident is detected any time after the implant/prosthesis is placed in the patient.
  3. Retained foreign object post procedure
    Retention of a foreign object in a patient after a surgical / invasive procedure
  4. Mis-selection of a strong potassium solution
    Mis-selection refers to when a patient is intravenously given a strong potassium solution rather than the intended medication.
  5. Administration of medication by the wrong route
    Where the patient is given one of the following:
    Intravenous chemotherapy by the intrathecal route
    Oral/enteral medication or feed/flush by any parenteral route
    Intravenous administration of an epidural medication that was not intended to be administered by the intravenous route
  6. Overdose of insulin due to abbreviations or incorrect device
    Overdose refers to when:A patient is given a 10-fold or greater overdose of insulin because the words ‘unit’ or ‘international units’ are abbreviated; such an overdose was given in a care setting with an electronic prescribing systemA healthcare professional fails to use a specific insulin administration device – that is, an insulin syringe or pen is not used to measure the insulinA healthcare professional withdraws insulin from an insulin pen or pen refill and then administers this using a syringe and needle.
  7. Overdose of methotrexate for non-cancer treatment
    Overdose refers to when a patient is given a dose of methotrexate, by any route, for non-cancer treatment that is more than the intended weekly dose; such an overdose was given in a case setting with an electronic prescribing system.
  8. Mis-selection of high strength midazolam during conscious sedation
    Mis-selection refers to when:A patient is given an overdose of midazolam due to the selection of a high strength preparation (5 mg/mL or 2 mg/mL) instead of the 1 mg/mL preparation, in a clinical area performing conscious sedationExcludes clinical areas where the use of high strength midazolam is appropriate; these are generally only those performing general anaesthesia, intensive care, palliative care, or areas where its use has been formally risk-assessed in the organisation.
  9. Failure to install functional collapsible shower or curtain rails
    Involves either:Failure of collapsible curtain or shower rails to collapse when an inpatient attempts or completes a suicide.Failure to install collapsible rails and an inpatient attempts or completes a suicide using non-collapsible rails.
  10. Falls from poorly restricted windows
    A patient falling from a poorly restricted window. This applies to;Windows ‘within reach’ of patients; this means windows (including the window sills) that are within reach of someone standing at floor level and that can be exited/fallen from without needing to move furniture or use tools to climb out of the window.Windows located in facilities/areas where healthcare is provided and that patients can and do access.Where patients deliberately or accidentally fall from a window where a fitted restrictor is damaged or disabled, but not where a patient deliberately disables a restrictor or breaks the window immediately before they fall.Where patients can deliberately overcome a window restrictor using their hands or commonly available flat-bladed instruments as well as the ‘key’ provided.
  11. Chest or neck entrapment in bed rails
    Entrapment of a patient’s chest or neck between bedrails or in the bedframe or mattress.
  12. Transfusion or transplantation of ABO-incompatible blood components or organs
    Unintentional transfusion of ABO-incompatible blood components.
  13. Misplaced naso- or oro-gastric tubes and feed administered
    Misplacement of a naso- or oro-gastric tube in the pleura or respiratory tract that is not detected before starting a feed, flush or medication administration.
  14. Scalding of patients
    Patient scalded by water used for washing/bathing. Excludes: • scalds from water being used for purposes other than washing/bathing (eg from kettles).
  15. Unintentional connection of a patient requiring oxygen to an air flowmeter
    This applies when a patient who requires oxygen is connected to an air flowmeter when the intention was to connect them to an oxygen flowmeter.

What should I do if I think I have a Never Event claim?

If you or a loved one has fallen victim to a Never Event and suffered harm as a result, you may be entitled to pursue a clinical negligence claim for compensation.

Our expert medical negligence compensation claims team Hudgell Solicitors has dealt with a variety of cases of this nature and our team of experts are on hand to advise you every step of the way to find out if you have a claim to make.

At Hudgell Solicitors, we are committed to ‘Righting Wrongs’ and the majority of cases we handle are funded by no win no fee agreement. Get in touch today for free, no obligation advice on your claim.

What is the time limit for making a Never Event medical negligence claim?

If aged 18 and over, you will typically have three years from the date that the negligence occurred or from the date that you became aware of negligent treatment. For under-18s, there is no time limit. However, once a child reaches 18, the standard 3 year claim period comes into effect.

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Alternatively, call us now on 01482787771

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