If you sustained lacerations and scarring in a workplace accident, you could be entitled to seek compensation for the suffering, pain and expenses you incurred by filing a personal injury claim against your employer. However, your claim must meet specific criteria for it to be valid. To find out more on how much compensation you could receive for lacerations and scarring sustained at work, please read on.
Would My Laceration and Scarring Claim be Valid?
Suffering a laceration injury in the workplace that leaves you scarred, is quite a common injury, more especially if you work in an environment where you handle knives, chemicals and electrical machinery and equipment. Providing you can provide solid proof that you sustained your injuries in the workplace through employer negligence or because of the error on the part of work colleague, you could be entitled to claim compensation from your employer. Another criteria that must be met when filing an accident at work claim, is that you do not run out of time because of the statutory limit associated with all personal injury claims.
What Are the Most Commonly Reported Causes of Laceration and Scarring Injuries in the Workplace?
You can suffer a laceration injury at work in many ways, but the most commonly reported accidents that result in this type of injury are detailed below:
- When a part of your body comes into contact with moving machinery or a blade
- When you suffer a fall
- When you are cut with a hand knife that you routinely use in the workplace
Any sort of laceration can result in scarring which is part of the healing process. Scarring can also occur should your injury require surgery. If the scarring is severe, you can suffer serious psychological damage which includes depression all of which would be taken into account when filing a laceration and scarring claim against your employer.
What Workers Are Most at Risk of Sustaining Lacerations and Scarring?
As previously mentioned, you could suffer a laceration injury in a multitude of ways and circumstances when you are at work. The most at risk of suffering this type of injury includes people who work in the following industries:
- Tree surgery
If you sustain a laceration injury while you are at work, the incident must be reported to RIDDOR and should your injury mean that you are not able to work for 7 consecutive days or more, a report must be sent to the Health and Safety Executive and this has to be done with 15 days of the accident at work that left you with a laceration injury happened.
What Are the Consequences of Laceration and Scarring Injuries?
Sustaining a serious laceration injury could result in the following:
- The loss of a limb because the laceration you sustained was catastrophic
- Fracture and broken bones which means surgery would be required as part of your treatment
- Damage to muscles, tendons and ligaments
- Nerve damage
- Skin grafts
- Tissue damage
- Surgical intervention
How Are Laceration Injuries Treated?
Severe, deep lacerations injuries typically require stitching, suturing or gluing which helps prevent infection taking hold and promotes healing. With this said, it is extremely important for a laceration injury to be treated as a matter of urgency and it must be kept clean before any treatment is administered. As such, if you suffer a laceration injury at work, you must seek first-aid from the designated person before being taken to the Accident and Emergency department of your local hospital.
The sooner a laceration injury is correctly treated and antibiotics are administered, the less chance there is of infection taking hold in the wound which could lead to a lot of complications and scarring issues.
Can Laceration Scarring be Corrected?
If you were left with severe scarring following a laceration injury sustained in the workplace, it may be possible to surgically correct the amount of damage that has been done to the area of your body that is affected. A specialist would be able to assess the scarring before advising on the best way to correct the problem which could involve re-stitching the original wound so that it leaves you with a much finer scar that is a lot less visible.
How is the Compensation for Lacerations and Scarring Claims Worked Out?
The level of compensation you may receive should your laceration and scarring claim be upheld, would depend on the severity of your injuries and where the scarring is. Another factor that would be taken into consideration when calculating how much laceration and scarring compensation you could be awarded, would depend on how complicated your case happens to be and whether or not your injuries are so catastrophic that you would not be able to work again.
Compensation amounts are divided into two parts which are referred to as “general damages” which are awarded and calculated on the pain and suffering your injuries caused you and “special damages” which are calculated on the out of pocket expenses and other costs you had to pay out as a direct result of your injuries.
As such, you should keep all the receipts for medical, travel and other expenses you paid out because they would be needed as proof of your expenditure when calculating the amount of compensation you would receive in special damages.
Who Pays The Settlement in a Laceration and Scarring Claim?
Your employer must have liability insurance which provides cover for injuries you may sustain while in the workplace. The policy must be issued by a recognised insurance provider and it must meet the legal requirement which is set at £5 million. As such, when you make a personal injury claim against an employer to seek compensation in a laceration and scarring claim, it is the insurance company who pays the compensation you are awarded in a successful claim.
Would My Laceration and Scarring Claim Be Heard in Court?
Providing your employer does not dispute your laceration and scarring claim against them, your case would be settled by the insurance provider without the need for it to be heard by a judge in court. However, if your employer does not admit liability for the workplace injuries you sustained, your solicitor would investigate their claim to see if responsibility would be admitted and if not, court proceedings against your employer would be filed. In short, your case would go to court if your laceration and scarring claim is disputed.
It is worth noting that the majority of personal injury claims are settled “out of court” by insurance providers. As such, an experienced accident at work solicitor would enter into negotiations with the insurers to work out a fair level of laceration and scarring compensation for you which is one of the great advantages of having lawyer representation in personal injury claims.
What Are the Advantages of Having a No Win No Fee Lawyer Represent Me?
Working with a lawyer who has vast experience in handling laceration and scarring injury claims offers many advantages some of which are detailed below:
- Once satisfied that you have a strong case against an employer, a firm of lawyers would work with you on a No Win No Fee basis which in short, means you would not have to worry about finding the money to pay for the legal representation the lawyer provides
- Your initial consultation with a No Win No Fee lawyer would be free of charge and it allows the firm the opportunity of assessing whether a laceration and scarring claim is valid and therefore stands a higher than average chance of being successful
- You would be provided with essential advice on what evidence is required to prove your claim against a negligent employer
- Should your employer deny liability, a lawyer would carry out a thorough investigation of their claims to see if they can get your employer to admit responsibility for the injury you sustained in the workplace
- The lawyer would respect all pre-action protocols and would communicate with your employer and their liability insurance providers directly
- A lawyer would ensure that you are examined by an independent medical professional who would provide an extensive, detailed report on the lacerations and scarring you suffered. The report is an essential document that would be used when calculating the level of damages you may receive in a successful laceration and scarring claim
- You would have the advantage of being seen by medical professionals so that you receive the best aftercare, therapies and treatments that may be deemed necessary
- A lawyer would work hard to negotiate the level of laceration and scarring compensation you rightly deserve which would be settled by your employer’s insurance provider
When a solicitor takes on your laceration and scarring claim, they would inform you of how much compensation you may receive and they would do so at the earliest opportunity which is another benefit of having a firm of lawyers represent you when making a personal injury claim against a negligent employer.
Should I File a Laceration and Scarring Claim Against My Employer?
Suffering lacerations which results in scarring can be devastating, more especially if the scarring is on an area of your body that is highly visible. A laceration injury can be so catastrophic that it results in having a limb amputated. Even losing a finger, thumb or toe can have an affect on your ability to work and can negatively impact your overall health and well-being. As such, seeking compensation from your employer for this type of workplace injury is perfectly acceptable, more especially as they would have liability insurance in place to cover this type of eventuality bearing in mind that the insurance is a legal requirement for all employers in the United Kingdom.
What are My Workers Rights If I Am Injured at Work?
Your rights are protected if you are injured in the workplace. Should you suffer laceration and scarring injuries, you have the right to the following:
- Seek compensation for the injuries you sustained providing your claim meets the necessary criteria
- To know that your job is safe when you file an accident at work claim against your employer
What Are My Employer’s Responsibilities in the Workplace?
Your employer has a duty of care towards you when you are in their employment which is to set in place all “reasonable” measures to keep you safe from harm and injury. Should an employer fail in their “duty” and you suffer laceration and scarring injuries, you would have the right to seek compensation for the pain, suffering and out of pocket expenses you incurred as a result of their negligence.
Your employer must do the following:
- Abide by all Health and Safety Executive legislation and other laws that are set in place to protect employees from harm and injury in the workplace
- To make sure that all employees and other workers are given adequate training to carry out their jobs and to ensure that ongoing training is provided
- To ensure that working practices and procedures are clearly detailed
- To provide the correct personal protective equipment to all employees and other workers
- To carry out risk assessments of a working environment and to set in place “reasonable” measures to reduce the risk of harm and injury to employees and other workers
- To make sure that all tools, machinery and equipment are maintained in good working order
What is the Statutory Time Limit To Filing a Laceration and Scarring Claim Against an Employer?
There is a 3 year statutory time limit that must be respected when filing a laceration and scarring claim against your employer. The time limit begins as follows:
- 3 years from the date of your workplace injury
- 3 years from the date you are diagnosed as suffering from a medical condition or other health issue that can be linked to your workplace injury
- 3 years from the date you turn 18 years of age should you have sustained your injuries prior to being 18 years old
Could I Lose My Job For Filing a Laceration and Scarring Claim Against My Employer?
Your employer would be acting illegally if they fire you because you file a personal injury claim against them. Even if your employer threatens you in any way because you seek compensation or they make your working life hard, you should consult a lawyer who specialises in employment law because there is a high chance you could also file other court proceedings against your employer.
Would a Solicitor Work on a No Win No Fee Basis on My Laceration and Scarring Claim?
As previously mentioned, a firm of solicitors would first have to assess your laceration and scarring claim against your employer before they would agree to work on your case without having to request a retainer from you. However, once a lawyer is satisfied that your employer could be held liable for the workplace injuries you sustained and that you have a strong personal injury claim against them, they would enter into a No Win No Fee agreement with you.
This means you would not have to worry about finding the funds to pay for the legal representation a No Win No Fee lawyer provides. In short, there would be no upfront or ongoing fees to find once you sign a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA) with a firm of lawyers.
A CFA is a legal contract between you and the firm of lawyers who represent you in a laceration and scarring claim. The agreement lays out the Terms and Conditions as well as the “success fee” you agree to pay the solicitor but only if your case is successful. Should you lose your claim, there would be nothing to pay the lawyer because of the No Win No Fee agreement you signed with them.
The “success fee” that is due to the solicitor on a successful claim would be taken out of the laceration and scarring compensation you are awarded whether in an out of court settlement or by a judge in court, should your employer deny liability for the injuries you sustained.
If you would like more information on how laceration injuries are treated, the following link takes you to the NICE CKS website where you will find a lot more information on this type of injury:
To read more about the 3 year statutory time limit associated with personal injury claims, the link below takes you to the Citizen’s Advice website where you will find a lot of useful information: