Being injured in an accident at work can leave you unable to work, whether for a short or long period of time which can put you under financial pressure when you are feeling unwell. If you were injured at work in the last 3 years, there is an accident at work procedure to follow which would strength your claim should you decide to file for compensation against a negligent employer. This guide provides essential reading on what you should do following an accident at work, to find out more please read on.
Reporting Your Accident at Work to the Manager, Supervisor or Employer
Following an accident at work that leaves you injured, the most important initial action you should take, is to seek medical attention for your injuries to be treated. However, the incident must be reported to the person in charge whether it is a manager, supervisor or your employer. Failure in reporting an accident at work that leaves you with an injury no matter how slight, could make it very hard and jeopardise your right to seek compensation for any pain, suffering and out of pocket expenses you incurred.
Employers, managers or supervisors have a duty to keep you safe from injury in the workplace. The act of reporting an accident at work serves several purposes which are detailed below:
- An employer, manager or supervisor would be aware of all resources available that would ensure you receive the help you need as soon as possible
- An official record of the accident at work is proof that the incident that left you injured occurred in the workplace
Ensure You Make a Record Of Your Accident At Work
If you are unable to report an accident at work yourself because of the severity of your injuries, you should ensure that someone does this on you behalf whether it is a work colleague or family member. You should be allowed to read the report in the Accident Report Book to ensure that the details of your accident at work and the injuries you sustained are correct.
All businesses in the UK are legally required to have and maintain an Accident Report Book that is easily accessible to all persons in the workplace. With this said, if there is no Accident Report Book, you should write a report of the accident detailing your injuries and give a copy to your employer, supervisor or manager, remembering to keep a copy of the report for your own records.
The more proof you can provide when filing an accident at work claim, the better because it not only strengthens your case but could also assist a judge when calculating the amount of compensation you are awarded in a successful accident at work claim.
Make Sure You Take Photographs Of Where Your Accident at Work Occurred
As previously mentioned, the more evidence and proof you can provide of the accident at work that left you injured, the stronger your claim would be. As such, you should take photos of where the incident occurred. If possible, you should request any CCTV footage of the accident which could provide evidence of why the accident occurred. You should also take photos of your injuries as soon as possible which would show the extent of your injuries.
Make Sure The Details of Your Injuries Are Well Documented
Having a detailed medical report of the extent of your injuries following a work-related accident strengthens an accident at work claim. You should ensure there is a record of your injuries on admission to hospital or other medical facility. This evidence goes a long way in proving the damage you sustained and would be used to calculate the accident at work compensation you may be awarded in a successful claim.
Seeking Advice From A Solicitor Who Specialises in Accident at Work Claims
Work-related injury claims are often hotly contested either by an employer or their insurers. Personal injury claims can be complex, long-drawn out legal processes which can run into thousands of pounds. As such, if you feel that your accident at work injury occurred due to employer negligence, whether because they failed to keep the workplace safe because health and safety regulations were ignored or because you were not given adequate training to do the job you were tasked to do, it is best to seek legal advice from an accident at work lawyer as early as possible.
You should never try to negotiate with your employer directly before seeking legal advice because it could jeopardise your right to file an accident at work claim against them further down the line. A solicitor who specialises in accident at work claims would explain all your worker’s rights following an incident that left you injured while at work. The legal advice you receive could ensure you are awarded a level of compensation you deserve because your employer was negligent in their duty to keep you safe from harm and injury in the workplace.
It is also worth noting that solicitors are able to carry out vital research using legal libraries and they can also contact medical professionals when expert testimony is required to support your accident at work claim.
What is the Time Limit for Reporting an Accident at Work?
There is a 3 year time limit to filing an accident at work claim against an employer you think should be held liable for your injuries. The time limit begins from the date a workplace accident occurred or the time you first became aware of your injuries, health issue or medical disorder which is typically when they are diagnosed by a doctor or other medical professional. Although a 3 year accident at work time limit might seem like long enough, it can take a lot of time and effort when it comes to gathering all the proof and evidence needed to strengthen your case which would also ensure you are awarded the correct amount of accident at work compensation.
If left to long, you may find that you fall foul of the statutory 3 year time limit which in short means you may lose out on being able to file an accident at work claim even if it can be proved your employer failed in their duty to keep you safe from injury in the workplace. As such, seeking legal advice as early as possible is essential.
Is it Worth Me Filing an Accident at Work Claim Against My Employer?
Having suffered an accident at work that leaves you injured, could mean that you are unable to work during the time it takes you to recover. It could mean that you are not able to work again should the injuries you sustain be catastrophic. This could put you in financial difficulty adding to the stress and anxiety you are already having to cope with. As such, filing for compensation against a negligent employer could alleviate all the financial worries you may have to face and cope with.
All employers in the UK who employ more than one person are legally required to take out employer’s liability insurance which must be up-to-date and valid. This insurance specifically covers the fact that employees may suffer an accident at work that leaves them injured which in short means that should your claim be successful and you are awarded compensation, the amount you receive would be paid out by your employer’s insurers.
Could My Employer Fire Me for Filing an Accident at Work Claim Against Them?
Your employer cannot sack you for filing an accident at work claim for compensation against them and if they do, you could be entitled to file an unfair dismissal against them too. Unless your employer has a valid reason for firing you should you decide to claim compensation for injuries you sustained in the workplace, they cannot by law show you the door or treat you unfairly.
Do I Have Worker’s Rights Following an Accident at Work That Left Me Injured?
Following an accident at work that leaves you with an injury whether minor or more severe, you have certain rights which employer’s must adhere to. These are detailed below:
- You have the right to receive a level of compensation for the pain, suffering and out-of-pocket expenses you incurred as a direct result of having been involved in an accident at work that left you injured
- Your job is safe and that you are treated fairly by both work colleagues and your employer
How Do I Start an Accident at Work Claim Against My Employer?
Following an accident at work that left you injured and unable to work whether for a short time or much longer, you would need gather as much proof and evidence of the incident and your injuries as possible before contacting an accident at work lawyer. If your injuries require a specialist medical report, a solicitor who specialises in work-related personal injury claims would be able to arrange an appointment with a specialist for you. This could help speed up the process considerably.
Once you have entered into a Conditional Fee Agreement, the solicitor would also communicate with your employer’s insurers which again should speed up what is typically a long-drawn out legal process at the best of times. The solicitor who represents you would do all the work leaving you to concentrate on recovering from your injuries without worrying about how you are going to pay for the legal representation you receive when you need it the most. The solicitor would follow the accident at work procedure which means that no time is lost from the outset of your claim right through to its conclusion.
Would a Solicitor Agree to Work With Me on a No Win No Fee Basis?
These days, most solicitors who specialise in accident at work claims, provide an initial, no obligation consultation which is typically free of charge. This allows a solicitor the opportunity of listening to your case before determining whether you have a strong claim against a negligent employer. The solicitor would offer to work with you on a No Win No Fee basis which means you would have to sign a legal contract known as a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA). This legal contract sets out the percentage you have agreed to pay for the legal representation you receive which is often referred to as a “success fee”. The reason being that you would only have to pay the solicitor if your accident at work claim is successful and you are awarded compensation for the pain, suffering and out of pocket expenses you incurred through employer negligence.
If you claim is not successful, you would not have to pay for the legal representation you received because the solicitor took on the risks when entering into a CFA with you at the outset. It is also worth noting that the amount you pay on a successful accident at work claim, would be deducted from the amount you are awarded whether the case is heard before a judge or your employer’s insurers chose to settle your claim out of court.