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Work Accident Claim Process

1. Have you had an accident at work?

Having an accident at work can be very upsetting. On top of any injuries sustained, you may also worry about how your employer will handle the situation. Our expert legal team will guide you through the process and give you all the advice you need to put you at ease and help you get the compensation that you deserve. 

The decision to bring a claim can be a difficult one. In most cases this will be against your employer or maybe against a fellow employee. It is important to remember that you are entitled to compensation if you are injured as a result of your employer’s or another employee’s negligence. Your employer should not discriminate against you for making an accident at work claim. 

You may be concerned about the financial impact that making a claim will have on your employer, especially if you work for a small business. However, employers are required by law to have insurance for any workplace accident claims, and this insurance will cover their legal costs and any compensation awarded.

2. Can you claim for an accident at work?

You can make an accident at work claim if you’ve been injured as a result of health and safety procedures not being followed. In some instances, you may even be able to claim if you caused the accident, if for example your injuries were made worse because of a piece of faulty equipment.

It may also be possible to claim if a workplace accident made an existing injury or condition worse.

If you have been injured in an accident at work where your employer was at least partly at fault, you can make a claim.

Your employer has a duty of care to keep you safe whilst at work. This is a legal obligation under the Health of Safety at Work Act 1974. If your employer has failed to protect you, then you have a right to seek compensation for your injury.

Under your employer’s duty of care, they must provide a safe workplace environment with well-maintained equipment, high-quality protective wear, and adequate training.

If your employer hasn’t met these requirements, and you have been injured because of it, you may have a legal right to claim compensation.

3. Accidents at work claims we can deal with

Your employer could become responsible for injuries caused by:

  • Incorrect (or lack of) manual training
  • Defective or dangerous equipment or machinery
  • Slips and trips
  • Lack of protective equipment
  • Failure to appropriately assess the risks of a certain task
  • An unsafe workplace
  • The negligence of fellow employees

There are many different types of workplace injuries that your employer can be held responsible for, such as:

  • Cuts and bruises
  • Burns and scalding
  • Bone or muscle injuries 
  • Brain or spinal injuries
  • Fatalities 

4. No win no fee funding

We handle our accident at work claims on a no win no fee basis. This means that there are no upfront payments and you only pay us if your claim is successful. 

We’ll keep you fully updated throughout your claim, so you know how much compensation you are likely to receive.

If you have already instructed another solicitor and you would like to transfer the case to us, we can take over your claim at any stage from another solicitor. We can normally agree to split our costs with your previous solicitor so that you don’t have to pay them to move your case. 

5. How to start a work accident claim

Before you get in touch, you should collect as much information about the accident and your injuries as possible. 

The process can start with a telephone call. We will take down your details and ask for as much evidence as you can provide. Alternatively, you can book an appointment to come and see us if you would prefer this. 

It is advisable that you make a claim with us as soon as possible after your accident. This will help us assess your case and so we can assist you to obtain the appropriate evidence to support your case.

You should:

  • Take photographs of your injury and whatever caused your accident
  • Make sure you obtain details for anyone who witnessed your accident
  • Make notes about your accident including drawings if they’ll help show what happened
  • Ask any witnesses to make notes and share them with you
  • Make an appointment to see your GP as soon as possible. They can record the details of your accident in your medical records, as well as treat your injury

6. The claim process

We will always be completely transparent with you. Not only will you know exactly how we’re representing you, but we’ll keep you updated every step of the way in the claim process.

We will offer you impartial no win no fee legal advice with a free initial no-obligation consultation.

We’ll use our experience and expertise to build the strongest legal argument for your claim.

We’ll arrange medical assessments to ensure your claim is valued correctly.

We’ll negotiate the maximum amount of compensation for you

We’ll prove that the accident and injury was not completely your fault. We will prove that the employer’s negligence contributed to if not caused the accident.

We will ask you to provide evidence to support your claim. This could include evidence such as:

  • Workplace accident book logs
  • Photographs/video footage of the hazard in its location
  • Witness statements
  • A statement from a colleague 
  • An injury diary with symptoms, details, and medical evidence
  • An independent medical assessment of your injuries
  • Medical records and treatments 
  • Records of financial losses

The evidence you provide will depend on the nature of your claim. For example, you may have CCTV footage or HR documents that will help prove your case.

It’s best to prepare this information in advance so that we can get to work on your claim straight away. Once we’ve looked at your evidence, we’ll arrange for a medical professional to review your injuries and provide a report.

After this stage, you can leave it with us. Then, we’ll go through the negotiation process and represent you, claiming your rights as an employee under your employer’s duty of care.

If we’re successful, you’ll be awarded the total amount minus any legal fees. The opponent will pay a substantial proportion of these fees in most cases, leaving you with as much compensation as possible. We may also be able to secure interim payments to cover any ongoing costs.

7. How long does it take to make an injury at work claim?

The amount of time it takes for a claim to be processed depends on the complexity of the claim.

For straightforward low value claims where the employer admits fault, it could take up to 6 months to settle. For more complex cases where fault is not accepted, and where injuries are serious, claims can take longer, sometimes two or three years.

8. How much compensation can you claim?

The compensation you receive will depend on the severity of your injuries and how they impact your daily life.

The Judicial College Guidelines, provide a reference for the amount of compensation you may be able to claim for your injuries.

The Guidelines consider which part of your body has been injured and the severity of the injury, including the recovery period. This type of compensation is known as general damages.

Additionally, you can claim for special damages. This amount is calculated for all out-of-pocket expenses you may have incurred because of your accident.

The amount of compensation for special damages may include, but is not limited to:

  • Medical expenses.
  • Income lost because of time off work.
  • Future loss of income.
  • Changes to your ability to work in the future.
  • Treatment or physiotherapy costs.
  • Costs of care and assistance.
  • Travel expenses to treatment and appointments.
  • Damage to belongings.
  • Any other costs associated with your ongoing care

9. Can you be fired for having an accident at work?

You may be concerned that making a claim against your employer will damage your relationship with them.

If the accident was partly your fault, and partly a result of your employer’s negligence, your employer has no right to dismiss you.

If you were not at fault for the accident at all and your employment is terminated as a result of the accident, you may be able to take legal action against your employer for unfair dismissal.

10. Can I make an accident at work claim if I’m partly at fault?

If you were partially at fault for an accident, you may be able to make a claim that is known as a contributory negligence claim.

This is when both you and the employer agree to share responsibility, or when a court makes a finding of contributory negligence. You will then receive a percentage of the total compensation based on how much you were at fault.

11. How Long Do You Have To Make An Injury At Work Claim?

The time limit for starting an accident at work claim is three years from the date of the accident.

You may be able to claim outside of the three year window if:

  • The injury caused psychological damage (or brain damage), and you were not mentally capable of claiming within the three years. In these cases, there is no time limit.
  • If a piece of equipment is found to have been faulty at a later date, you could claim outside the three year window.
  • The accident resulted in death. The three year limitation begins from the date of the death, even if a claim has already been started.

It is advisable to contact us as soon as possible, to ensure we can begin your claim within the relevant time limits.

12. The most important things to remember when claiming for injuries caused by accidents at work:

  • To successfully win your claim, you must prove that the accident was caused by the negligence of your employer. 
  • Your employer cannot fire you or discriminate against you as a result of your claim
  • The amount of compensation you receive depends on the severity of your injuries and the recovery period.
  • You can claim for all out-of-pocket expenses you may have incurred as a result of the accident.
  • You have three years from the date of the accident to make your claim.
  • Your case will be funded by way of a no win no fee agreement. This means that if your claim is unsuccessful and you complied with what was agreed at the outset, you won’t have to pay our costs.

If you have had an accident at work that was not your fault, reach out to us for a complimentary consultation.

*This article is not legal advice but provides a general overview. The specific details of your case will determine the best course of action.