Cauda equina syndrome is devastating, especially if caused by a delay in diagnosis or a surgical error. If you have developed cauda equina syndrome as a result of a delay or through substandard care, you may have a claim for medical negligence.

Contact the team button

Our specialist team of cauda equina solicitors have years of experience dealing with spinal injury claims of this nature, and so understand the issues that you are facing following a diagnosis of cauda equina syndrome.

We will build a team of specialists around you, to ensure you can take control of your life through compensation, adaptation and rehabilitation following medical negligence.

As well as supporting a Spinal Injuries Association Peer Support Officer, our specialist team is recognised by the Cauda Equina Syndrome Association (CESA) on their Legal Panel as being expert in providing legal support to people with cauda equina.

Find out more about the charity and how they support those with cauda equina syndrome on their website here.

Read on to find out more about making a claim. However, if you want to get in touch with our team right away, please click here or call 0800 923 2080:


When might someone have a claim for cauda equina syndrome?

You are eligible to make a clinical negligence claim for a cauda equina injury, if:

  1. you have either developed cauda equina syndrome as a result of substandard surgical treatment; or
  2. you have developed the symptoms of cauda equina syndrome and there has been a negligent delay in treating it, leading to a worse outcome.

Often a claim arises when a patient develops cauda equina symptoms, but their GP or a hospital doctor is not sufficiently alert to them. As a consequence, there is a failure to perform the tests which would allow the condition to be diagnosed, so there is a delay in operating to decompress the affected nerves.

Find out more about red flag symptoms in relation to spinal injury here.

The result will often be that symptoms which might otherwise have been only transitory become permanent. You then have the right to be compensated if your claim can be proved.

It is not particularly easy to know whether you have a viable claim or not; medical negligence is a complicated field, and cauda equina cases can be especially complex.

You will also have only three years from the date of injury, or date of knowledge of the injury, in which to bring a medical negligence claim. We therefore advise that you seek advice from a legal specialist as soon as possible.

Find out more about time limits in medical negligence claims here.

How do you make a compensation claim for cauda equina?

In order to make a compensation claim for cauda equina syndrome, all you need to do is to get in touch with a specialist firm such as us. We will advise you as to the strength of your claim, and how it can be funded. Following this, we will then obtain all of your medical records, prepare witness statements, commission expert medical evidence, value your claim, and carry out all negotiations on your behalf.

If necessary, we will arrange for the issuing of court proceedings and prepare your case for trial. Only a tiny proportion of cases actually proceed to trial, but it is vital to instruct a lawyer who is prepared to take the case there if necessary.

It can seem daunting to start a claim for compensation against a doctor or other medical professional, but we genuinely will take care of everything on your behalf.

How much compensation might you receive for a cauda equina claim?

Each case is different, but a typical settlement will be in excess of £100,000. Many settlements will be far in excess of this and may approach or exceed £1 million. This will compensate you for your pain, suffering, and “loss of amenity” (the loss of ability to do things which you have previously enjoyed) as well as for any direct financial losses which you have suffered.

The general damages for pain and suffering are set quite high because cauda equina syndrome is such a painful and distressing condition. The level of direct financial losses does vary widely from case to case, as you would imagine.

Find out more about how compensation for medical negligence is calculated here.

How can you fund a claim for cauda equina syndrome?

There are many types of funding available. If you have some form of legal expenses insurance which covers your claim, you will usually retain all your damages and have nothing to pay.

If we run your claim on a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA) basis, commonly known as ‘no win, no fee’, then you are guaranteed to retain at least 75% of your damages, with up to 25% being deducted to meet the cost of insurance and a success fee. This is the most frequently used option for claims of this nature, as should the claim be unsuccessful you will have nothing to pay.

Further information about funding a claim can be found here.

How long will a cauda equina claim take?

It varies, but a typical case may settle within three years of lawyers being instructed. If negligence is admitted, we will always obtain early interim payments of compensation so the injured person can start to improve their quality of life at the earliest opportunity.

Find out more about the duration of claims here.


“I was recommended Royds Withy King by a different solicitors firm after my accident in 2009 resulting in a delayed diagnosis of CES (Cauda Equina Syndrome)

The team at Royds Withy King have been great and really helped with making the whole clinical negligence claim run smoothly, and easy to understand explaining everything along the way.

They showed great empathy, and understood how I was feeling. Paul Rumley arranged for the best expert witness’s involved in my case which really helped.

I have had a great service from them, and can highly recommend Royds Withy King Solicitors. Mr Paul Rumley, Sarah White and the team dealt with my clinical negligence claim, and achieved a fantastic out of court settlement for me. Their expertise and professionalism was very valuable to my case.

This settlement will go some way to allowing me to move on with my life, and allow my family and I to purchase and adapt a property that is suited to my needs, and provide me with the correct care and therapy package required into the future.”

Royds Withy King client awarded £3.4m for cauda equina claim


The team at CESA have also produced this video which helps people understand the difficulties of explaining cauda equina and its symptoms:

Hear from our team

Royds Withy King client awarded £3.4m for delay i...

A man who experienced a catastrophic delay in diagnosis of cauda equina syndrome has been awarded a lump sum of £3,400,000.

Read more >>

How to spot pre-eclampsia and HELLP syndrome – a...

Pre-eclampsia, and complications resulting from it, can be fatal to unborn babies. Here, Lucy Crawford tells of her own experience of H...

Read more >>

How one man changed the lives of thousands of babi...

Over the past week, Baby Loss Awareness Week has raised awareness of infant death. Here, Abigail Ringer tells the story of one of the f...

Read more >>

Read more on the Info Hub