Claiming Work Accident Compensation
According to the Labour Force Survey, there were 581,000 non fatal, self reported injuries at work in 2018/2019. It is unfortunate, but regardless of how and where you are employed, accidents at work do happen and the consequences can sometimes be devastating.
As such, it is the law that your employer provides a safe working environment for you to work in. Failure to do so could put them in a position of being held responsible for any injuries suffered in the workplace. Therefore, if you have been injured at work due to your employers’ negligence, then you may be eligible to make an accident at work compensation claim.
If this is the case and you decide to instruct Smith Jones to act on yours or a loved one’s behalf, you will have the full backing of a legal firm with over 30 years experience in accident at work claims. Our caring and compassionate solicitors understand the strict laws that govern the workplace and are experts in dealing with claims where you or someone close to you has been injured at work. Reach out to us today for a free, no-obligation assessment of your accident at work claim.
How Much Compensation For An Injury At Work?
Many of our clients look for the answer to this question at the start of their enquiry, however, there are many factors to consider before we’re able to give you an estimated settlement amount. This is because each injury at work claim is unique, and with the assistance of medical professionals and other experts, we will need to consider both the injury as well as factoring in loss of earnings (both past and present), money spent on travel, treatment and any adaptations or additional care as a result of your injury.
Time Limits & Your Employer
The law on time limits for work accident claims and occupational disease claims can be complex. Generally, as an adult, you have three years from the date of the injury to have either settled your claim or started court proceedings. With some industrial disease/occupational disease claims, the three-year time limit starts from the date of knowledge. The date of knowledge is the point at which you know that you are suffering from an illness caused by your employment.
Other exceptions to the three-year time limit include diminished mental capacity. This is an extremely complex area of law and so it is always advised you take legal advice from a specialist solicitor at the earliest opportunity.
For those who wish to continue working at the same company and are apprehensive about making a claim, we understand that you may be apprehensive when it comes to making a case against your employer. Fortunately, employers are not allowed to terminate your employment because of you bringing a claim against them and you should not be forced into resignation due to a hostile environment. This is often referred to as ‘constructive dismissal’ and is illegal.
As employers have a legal duty to provide safe working surroundings and are obliged to insure themselves against potential accidents, your employer will more than likely have little involvement in the process; instead their insurer will deal with the majority of the process on their behalf.
If you do have reservations about making a work accident claim whilst still in employment, just speak to a member of our friendly team. The chances are, we have helped somebody in a very similar situation, and we can help you work out your options.
Workplace Accidents - What Are Your Rights?
In the UK, employers are legally obliged to protect the welfare of their staff; this includes holding relevant and adequate insurance and meeting all health and safety regulations. Employers should take all reasonably practicable steps to prevent personal injury and to protect all persons from foreseeable hazards arising from its activities. Key areas of these laws include:
- Providing and maintaining safe working environments;
- Providing suitable and sufficient information, instruction and, where necessary, training;
- Making available any equipment necessary to ensure the well-being of employees and visitors.
Information regarding your employer’s specific Health and Safety commitments can usually be found in their Health and Safety Handbook. Because of this, many injuries in the workplace can be prevented. Though the environment you work in will determine the areas which pose the greatest risk to you, we commonly handle workplace injury claims from a wide range of consequences including, but not limited to:
- Inadequate training
- Faulty equipment
- Failure to provide Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
- Insufficient staffing levels
- Failure to carry out adequate risk assessments
- Poorly managed activities/ processes and systems
Employees also have a legal duty to co-operate with the company to fulfil their duties in order to protect their own safety by:
- Working safely and complying with the requirements of this policy and associated procedures;
- Using any equipment provided;
- Reporting incidents and assisting in their investigation;
This has been the law since at least as far back as 1837 when the landmark case of Priestley v Fowler, which established that an employer owed a personal duty of care to their employee. Over the years this has been developed further by the courts, and the most recent expression of it is that in Dusek v Stormharbour Securities LLP, where it was confirmed that: “Employers owe a personal, non-delegable duty to their employees to take reasonable care for their physical safety.”
This approach had continued through the years and is reflected in regulations such as The Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999, and other regulations made under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. As experienced work accident solicitors, we can provide you with the expertise needed to ensure you are properly looked after and compensated for any workplace injury you may receive, as well as access to the best possible treatment.
Compensation That Changes Lives
Read the stories of how we have helped people with rehabilition, compensation and support as to get their lives back after being involved in a workplace accident.
Accident at Work Claim Types
Healthcare Worker Injury Claims
Working in care is both physically and emotionally demanding. You are required to be compassionate and understanding, but you also have a very physical role to fulfil. Being injured on the job, especially in the manner that it can happen in a care environment, can thus make claiming for accidents as a carer some of the most sensitive to deal with. As with most types of injury claim, no two cases are alike. Though the individual circumstances of healthcare assistant claims vary widely, there are often characteristics which make a claim more likely to arise in certain surroundings. Common accidents involving care workers include:
- Slips, trips & falls
- Manual handling injuries
- Food and drink preparation accidents
Construction Site Claims
Working on construction sites still remains amongst the most dangerous occupations in many countries around the globe. Based on reports by the Health and Safety Executive, there are around 5% of employees that work in the construction industry in the UK, however, that relatively small percentage accounts for about 31% of the fatal injuries reported and 10% of serious accidents.
There are many reasons behind the huge number of accidents, with the use of potentially harmful and heavy equipment being among the top reasons, alongside working at height. There is also the risk of construction workers falling ill due to their working conditions, for instance, diseases that are related to asbestos or chemicals.
Electrocuted at Work
If you have been electrocuted at work due to an unsafe working environment, or in an inadequately protected public place, you may well have a valid claim for electric shock compensation.
Farm Accident Claims
Farming is considered to be one of the most dangerous sectors of industry for employees to work in. Animals, poorly maintained machinery, manual labour, and agricultural vehicles all present a scenario for a farming accident or injury to occur.
The term ‘industrial injury’ can refer to a wide variety of different incidents and claims. Thankfully, in recent years the number of industrial injuries has steadily reduced, mainly in part to stricter health and safety regulations. However, there are still large numbers of accidents in the workplace reported every year.
Injuries resulting from industrial accidents are more common in industries that use dangerous machinery or equipment and/or require heavy manual labour.
Repetitive Heavy Lifting Claims
It’s easy to suffer an injury through lifting a heavy object, especially in the workplace. This is why employers are required by law to provide appropriate manual handling training. Injuries are not just caused by heavy lifting but can also be sustained by pushing, twisting, pulling or from an awkward posture. If you are suffering from an injury caused by any of the above, and you didn’t receive the adequate training, you are able to make a claim for compensation.
Repetitive Strain Injury Claims
Regardless of industry type, all employers across the UK owe their employees a standard duty of care and this is more specifically covered by the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. If you believe that you’re suffering from repetitive strain injury due to your working conditions then it’s important you tell your employer as soon as possible, reasons being:
- Firstly, your employer has a legal duty to make any reasonable adjustments that might be necessary in order to alleviate the problem (such as adjustments to your workstation or by allowing you to take sufficient breaks).
- Secondly, they should also report your injury through their company’s health and safety procedure – for example, by reporting your injury in their accident book and then ensuring that you receive appropriate medical treatment and advice.
Injured In A Work Vehicle
Due to the nature of the working environment, those working in logistics are one of the most frequent groups of workers we represent an employer’s liability compensation claims. Claims involving couriers/delivery drivers, van and lorry/HGV drivers are common due to spending long periods of time on the road and the necessity to manage potentially heavy or hazardous goods.
Driving a lorry or HGV obviously comes with risks, but your employer is responsible for your safety during the course of your employment. As such, those risks should be minimised by having the correct training and procedures in place to prevent an accident occurring.
Why Choose Smith Jones?
Established in 1988, Smith Jones solicitors have a long history in dealing with all types of personal injury claims resulting from workplace accidents. As accredited personal injury solicitors, we can be relied upon to handle your case most sensitively and efficiently.
Thanks to our expertise and commitment to our clients, we can offer you the support and rehabilitation necessary to get your life back to normal. Most of our work injury claims are funded through no win no fee arrangements, so you can rest assured that there will be no costs to pay upfront and no financial risk. Should your compensation claim be successful, your legal fees will are subtracted from the amount that you receive.