A Practical Guide To Military Claims


Ahmed Al-Nahhas


£59.99, Law Brief Publishing



This is the first textbook to address the developing area of military claims. 

For many years, the military community has been overlooked. A service person seeking to bring claims would face a number of hurdles, not least Crown immunity from claims in tort, until the Crown Proceedings Act 1947 was amended in 1987. Among serving members of the military, it is commonly believed that civil claims cannot be made in the course of service. Civil claims are further complicated by the availability of other remedies, such as the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme, service complaint procedures and employment claims.

Further, while the armed services operate within the general framework of UK law, they are subject to their own law, regulations and procedures. There remain areas where civilian law does not extend, such as combat immunity and the exclusion of employment rights for many remedies.

Service personnel face very different workplace challenges from those in Civvy Street. While there are enormous career benefits, the loss of a promising career through injury can be devastating.

What sets this book apart from other practical guides is the very clear empathy that the author has for members of the military community, pointing out that ‘as lawyers we must try to understand our clients if we are ever going to have a chance of acting in their best interest’.

Most service personnel are extremely reluctant litigants and do not wish to take action against the service family to which they have developed a deep attachment. However, getting to grips with the service environment is no easy task. Rules and regulations are contained in a plethora of sources, many of which are unique to the military.

A particular difficulty is that there is often too much material to be considered; it is essential to focus on the key parts of any case.  

This book is firmly aimed at claimant personal injury lawyers, either working in or wishing to move into this area.

In under 300 pages, Al-Nahhas provides a valuable practical guide to the relevant law and sources of disclosure. The material is set out clearly, with chapters covering everything from accidents at work, to cold injuries, heat injuries, intentional torts, crime and punishment, and service complaints. Anyone unfamiliar with JMES (Joint Medical Employment Standard) will find everything they need here in a compact and convenient form. The analysis of medical documents and joint service publications is particularly helpful.

Service personnel who may have already felt let down by their military family are entitled to expect that those advising them are competent to do so. This book will go a long way to achieving that aim.

Al-Nahhas’ contribution will also be of enormous use to employment lawyers, advocates in courts martial (this book’s handy size means you can take it into court), army welfare officers and, dare I say, to those who advise the Ministry of Defence, whether in the Government Legal Service or panel solicitors.


Jeremy Taylor is a consultant solicitor at Wace Morgan, Shrewsbury