Accident at Work Compensation Claims


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By Oliviah Rix-Taylor

on Friday 5 January 2018


Woman at work

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Had an accident at work, can I claim?

Common causes of accidents in the workplace

Employer responsibilities 

Accident at work statistics 

How do I claim?

How much compensation could I be looking at?

How long do I have to make a claim?

How can Accident Line Direct help me?

 

Had an accident at work, can I claim?

GOV.UK recommends three things after an accident or injury at work – complaining, checking your insurance policy or using a solicitor to claim. Accidents and injuries are a regular occurrence at many workplaces due to the conditions of the environment that employees are in. Hundreds of thousands are affected by some form of work-related accident in the UK every year and many seek legal and professional help.

Within your place of work, your employer owes you a duty of care and you should feel you are in a safe and controlled environment. In fact there is an independent regulator for your safety at work and employers responsibilities called The Health and Safety Executive. If you need further information or feel you are in a dangerous working environment then we recommend contacting them immediately. It’s important to remember that in the UK if you have an accident at work then you do have rights. Accident at work law and No Win No Fee agreements make it possible for people who would normally be financially or legally unable to claim to get their deserved compensation.

If someone else is responsible for delivering a safe working environment then it does inevitably beg the question – if I get injured at work, do I get paid? The answer is usually straightforward –yes. Citizens advice make it clear that government payouts in the form of statutory sick pay and, in more extreme cases, disability benefits will always be in place for work based accidents, but they also recommend keeping records of medical reports in case you wish to claim money as compensation for your accident from your employer.

If you feel the accident was a result of negligence, or that you are now financially undermined then it’s fair to assess your employer’s responsibilities in relation to your accident at work.  You could be able to make a personal injury claim for compensation if you have experienced a non-fault accident at work.

What is the most common cause of accident in the workplace?

The most common work place accidents to happen in various working environments include:

  1. People falling, tripping or slipping because of obstructions or disregarded hazards.

  2. Unstable objects falling and landing on workers, such as scaffolding, etc.

  3. Strained muscles become apparent due to lifting objects that are too heavy (back and neck strains are the most common injuries here).

  4. Repetitive strain injury (RSI); this can result from any repeated movement carried out regularly.

  5. Employees sustain cuts and lacerations in the workplace due to various utensils, equipment and machinery.

  6. Collisions or crashes caused by industrial vehicles such as cars, lorries, vans, tractors, forklifts, and many others.

  7. Burns or scalds from work fires or machinery/tools.

  8. Injuries from hazardous materials or substances.

Hover over or click on the bars to see the most common accidents -

 

This graph shows data from the HSE RIDDOR report for 2016 and 2017.

Accident at work employer responsibility

Many accidents at work can be avoided by receiving necessary training, including lifting techniques, or by implementing protective or ergonomic equipment into the workplace. A lot of employers don’t often take these measures to prevent employee injuries, meaning that their ‘duty of care’ to you is breached.

Employers have a ‘duty of care’ to you, meaning that it is their responsibility to carry out regular health and safety risk assessments. If any causes for concern are raised, then it is also their duty to take the necessary measures in reducing or eliminating those risks, ultimately ensuring that you are fully protected at all times.

If your employer has neglected to do this, causing you or someone to sustain an injury, then a personal injury lawyer can help in claiming for compensation. This could ultimately stop something similar from happening again to you or your colleagues.

Accidents at work can also bring on illnesses, psychological effects and financial stresses. If you feel that an individual in your workplace or your employer has been negligent in protecting you and has caused you to suffer a work-related injury, you could be put in the hands of a personal injury solicitor who could help you with claiming compensation, which could help towards any consequential expenses.

You may have experienced a road traffic accident whilst travelling for work purposes, or perhaps you were at a conference in a different location to your office when the accident happened. In these cases, the person responsible for your accident may be harder to determine but often it usually falls to the employer to make sure you are in a safe environment, doing something related to your role. Otherwise there could be a breach in their duty of care to you which would be liable to compensation to you, the claimant.

If you are unsure then we offer a free phone service where you can speak to an industry expert. The consultation is obligation free and we will offer our opinion on whether you should pursue a claim for compensation or not, and offer you further advice.

Accident at Work Statistics

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) have reported statistics related to accidents at work, reinforcing how prevalent and serious it is today. In 2016/17, around 609,000 people suffered injuries at work and a staggering 31.2 million working days were lost due to work-related injuries and illnesses.

In addition to the loss of working days, roughly £14.9 billion was spent on covering the cost of work-related injuries and ill health due to conditions at certain workplaces.

The majority of accidents are often non-fatal, but sometimes fatalities do occur. In 2016, 137 workers were killed at work, which is too great a number. This should be avoided at all costs and your employer should be doing their utmost to protect you from sustaining injuries, whether minor, severe or fatal.

It is possible to make a claim for major injuries (those that mean an employee is unable to work for more than three days), dangerous incidents, industrial diseases and deafness.

How do I claim?

With a wide variety of accident at work cases, the process for each claim will differ. There are key steps to follow when trying to build a strong work accident claim case:

If an accident occurs, you should report it to your employer immediately and write down the details of what happened in their accident book; he/she must then report it to the HSE. Your employer will typically give you a generic accident report form which they will then make copies of.

 If your employer did not report your injury then this is a serious breach of their legal requirements. In this scenario you should try to obtain eye witness accounts, video footage or a statement from anyone who can corroborate your accident.

You should also try to take photos of the scene where your accident took place.

Next you should get in touch with an expert work accident solicitor who can help give you professional advice and guidance throughout the process, while fighting the case on your behalf.

You will then need to get a thorough a medical check to determine the severity and the cause of your injuries.

Your accident at work lawyer will help you to collate evidence such as witness statements, etc.

If your case is accepted, then the total compensation will be negotiated and settled.

In rarer cases where persistent disagreements occur with regards to liability or compensation amount, the case may then be taken to court.

How much compensation could I receive?

Compensation amounts are usually dependant on the injury and not the location they occurred in. For a guide to injury payouts you can take a look at our list of injuries and the recommended compensation amounts on our website.

For example a common injury that people claim compensation for is a back injury at work claim. As you read the compensation amounts it is important to remember that an injury will have an impact on your life, and it is that impact that is taken into consideration when determining your pay out.

Severity Compensation
Minor£1,950 to £9,970
Moderate£9,970 to 30,910
Severe£30,910 to £128,320

However, ultimately, there is no definitive answer for this question. Pay-outs for successful injury at work claims differ, depending on each situation and the amount of evidence given to prove the case.

When working out how much compensation you could receive, the accident at work solicitor will take into account any costs that you have incurred after the injury (special damages), such as loss of earnings from missing or being unable to return to work, or any medical costs. Depending on the severity of the injury (general damages) and whether it has caused life-lasting effects, the amount could, in turn, be very high.

The best thing to do would be to contact us at Accident Line Direct to discuss your options and find out more with regards to your potential compensation amount.

How long do I have to claim after an accident at work?

There is a 3-year time limit. When this expires, the case will be determined as ‘statute-barred’, meaning that it cannot be taken to court.

Understandably, some people may not realise that an accident at work actually caused an injury or illness, such as industrial deafness or diseases. In cases such as these, the time limit will begin from the ‘date of knowledge’, which is the date when the person became aware of their injury and that it happened due to negligence at work, through diagnosis.

Cases like this were common in the construction industry where many workers were unaware at the time, the harm asbestos was doing to their bodies. Decades later, when they developed fatal lung disease they were still able to apply for compensation because it was recognised that the delay in cause and symptoms was inevitably going to be longer than three years.

How can Accident Line Direct help with making an accident at work claim?

If you have suffered an accident at work within the last 3, or have become aware of the symptoms in the last 3 years due to an employer’s negligence, Accident Line Direct is here to provide you with expert advice on what to do with regards to your situation. We work with some of the best work injury lawyers and understand the process of a successful claim.

We work on a No Win No Fee policy, meaning that if your personal injury solicitor wins the case and gets you a deserved amount of compensation, they will deduct around 25% of the total amount you receive. On the other hand, if your case is unsuccessful and denied, then you will not incur any fees. With this in place, you’re never out of pocket and you’re free of any financial risks or worries when making a claim with us.

If you would like to begin your claim or simply find out more information, give us a call for free at Accident Line Direct today and one of our experienced advisors will be able to guide you in the right direction.

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