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Construction Accident Claims – A Guide to Claiming Compensation

As a construction worker, you have a responsibility to try and keep yourself and others as safe as possible. Your employer must also take practicable steps to try and protect your welfare. If they don’t, and you’re injured as a result, you could be entitled to seek compensation by making a construction accident claim.

In this guide to claiming compensation for a construction accident, we will provide clear answers to some common questions relating to work-related personal injury claims. We also explain the types of compensation you could receive if you make a successful construction accident claim and the process of doing so.

As part of our free initial consultation, a member of our team will provide free legal advice about your options. If you have a valid case, one of our solicitors specialising in accidents at work may offer to represent you. If they do, you’ll benefit from their No Win, No Fee service.

To speak to us about your options, you can:

  • Call our team on 0333 241 2519.
  • Use our free live chat service.

Please carry on reading for more information on construction site accident claims but please feel free to contact us with any queries.

Can I Make a Construction Accident Claim?

Construction site managers have a duty of care to try and keep all workers as safe as possible. This is a requirement set out in the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974. It means full-time employees, contractors and sub-contractors could all be entitled to start a personal injury claim following a construction accident.

The criteria that must typically be proven in a personal injury claim following an accident on a construction site are:

  • There must have been a duty of care owed to you by the responsible party (which could be your employer, a third party, a product manufacturer, or the owner/manager of the premises).
  • You must have been involved in an accident caused by the negligence of the responsible party.
  • You must have sustained an injury (or multiple injuries) as a result of the accident.

If you’ve suffered from a construction accident, call us to find out your eligibility to claim compensation.

What Should I Do If I’m Injured on a Construction Site?

Some of the steps you should take following an injury on a construction site include:

  • Report the accident to your manager as soon as possible. This can be done verbally or in writing but you should ask for a copy of their accident report.
  • Seek medical treatment for your injuries at a hospital, minor injuries unit or GP surgery.
  • Write down everything that happened as soon as you can.
  • Make a note of who witnessed the accident.
  • Take photographs and/or videos.

In some cases, your accident will need to be reported under RIDDOR regulations. This will be your employer’s responsibility but you should provide as much information about what happened when asked.

If you need any help with what to do following a construction site accident, please feel free to call our team.

What Evidence Can Support Construction Accident Claims?

If you decide to claim compensation following a construction site accident, you should try to provide as much evidence to support your case as possible. Ideally, this will prove who was responsible for the accident and how you’ve suffered as a result.

Some examples of evidence that could help to strengthen your claim include:

  • Medical Records: Comprehensive documentation of injuries sustained in the construction accident, including diagnosis, treatment, and prognosis from doctors or specialists.
  • Accident Report: A formal report of the accident, which may be filed by the construction site manager or with relevant health and safety authorities.
  • Witness Statements: Accounts from other construction workers, subcontractors, or any other witnesses who were present at the time of the accident.
  • Photographs of the Accident Scene: Images capturing the site of the accident, including any hazards or conditions that might have contributed to the incident.
  • CCTV or Video Footage: If available, footage from security cameras that recorded the accident.
  • Employment and Training Records: Documentation showing that you were working at the construction site and records of any relevant safety training you received.
  • Health and Safety Compliance Records: Records of health and safety inspections, risk assessments, and any violations or concerns noted at the construction site.
  • Incident Logs: Logs or records of previous accidents or near-misses at the site, which can demonstrate a pattern of safety issues.
  • Equipment Maintenance Records: If the accident involved machinery or equipment, maintenance logs can be important to show if the equipment was faulty or not properly maintained.
  • Construction Project Plans and Specifications: Documents that detail the work being done at the time of the accident, which can help establish the context of the incident.
  • Expert Testimony: In some cases, an expert witness may provide testimony on construction practices, standards, and whether they were followed.
  • Personal Diary or Journal: Personal notes or a journal detailing your experience, recovery, and the impact of the accident on your daily life.
  • Financial Records: Records showing any loss of earnings, such as recent pay slips or salary statements, to illustrate financial losses due to the construction accident. This should also include any out-of-pocket expenses, medical bills, rehabilitation costs, and other expenses incurred as a result of the injury.

If your claim is accepted by one of our specialist accident-at-work solicitors, they’ll do all they can to collate evidence to support your claim. This could, for example, include a copy of a Health and Safety Executive (HSE) report into the accident following an investigation.

We are happy to review any evidence you’ve collected so far so do give us a call and speak to one of our specialists today at 0333 241 2519.

What Is the Time Limit for Making a Construction Accident Claim?

In the UK, there is a 3-year time limit for all personal injury claims. This means in most cases the injured worker would need to begin the claim within 3 years of the date of the construction site accident.

This limitation period is set out in the Limitation Act 1980 but in some cases, the time limit might not apply.

For example, there is no time limit for construction injury claims while the claimant lacks the mental capacity to deal with the claims process. In this case, someone else could act as a litigation friend and manage the process on behalf of the claimant.

If you’d like us to check how long you have to start a construction site accident claim, please use the number above to get in touch.

What Types of Compensation Can I Claim for a Construction Accident?

Settlements in successful construction accident claims can typically be made up of two heads of loss.

General damages are the first and it covers:

  • Physical pain and suffering.
  • Psychological suffering.
  • Loss of amenity i.e. any negative impact your injuries have on your normal activities and hobbies.

To assess the extent of your injuries, you may be asked to attend an independent medical assessment. This will usually be arranged by your No Win, No Fee solicitor as the report that follows will help to ascertain the value of your injuries.

Special damages are awarded to cover any costs linked to your injuries. For example, a construction site accident claim could include compensation for:

  • Current and future loss of earnings.
  • Medical costs.
  • The cost of a carer.
  • The cost of installing aids and devices in your home to make it easier to cope with any permanent disability.
  • Replacement property costs.

All claims for costs and expenses will need to be backed up by receipts, bank statements, wage slips and other financial documents.

building site worker injury background

Starting a construction accident claim

Take the first step towards claiming compensation for a construction accident with our complimentary free consultation.

With 30+ years of experience, our solicitors are committed to providing a 100% No Win, No Fee claims service, offering claimants a risk-free path to pursue the compensation they deserve.

Start a Claim

Or call us on 0333 241 2519 to speak with a specialist solicitor.

Can I Claim Compensation for Psychological Injuries?

Being involved in an accident on a construction site can be quite traumatic and lead to conditions like anxiety and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). In some cases, the impact of mental health injuries can cause sleep problems and depression.

These forms of psychological suffering could all be compensated for as part of a construction accident claim.

To prove how your mental health has been affected by the accident and your injuries, medical evidence will be needed. This will usually involve obtaining reports or medical records from a specialist psychiatrist or psychologist.

Can I Claim Compensation for an Accident Caused by Faulty Equipment?

The Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 2018 mean that equipment on construction sites must be a) fit for purpose, b) in a good state of repair and c) properly maintained.

As such, if you are injured whilst using a faulty or poorly maintained machine, tool or plant equipment, you could be entitled to seek compensation for any subsequent injuries.

For example, you may be able to claim construction accident compensation:

  • If you fell from a ladder that was damaged and sustained a back injury as a result.
  • Where your arm was trapped in a poorly maintained conveyor belt used to move bricks and the emergency stop button failed. As a result, you had to have your arm amputated below the elbow.
  • After falling from a scissor lift with a safety gate that was known not to shut properly. Because of the fall, you suffered a serious head injury and have been diagnosed with epilepsy.

Whatever type of construction site accident you’ve been involved in, please call our team and we’ll check if you’re eligible to claim compensation for free.

Can I Claim if I’m a Subcontractor or Self-Employed?

To clarify a point we made earlier, construction site managers or operators have a duty of care to try and protect all staff.

That means contractors, the self-employed, subcontractors and even zero-hours workers have the same rights as employed construction workers.

As such, if you’ve been injured on a building site while subcontracting, you could begin a construction accident claim if your injuries occurred because of your employer’s negligence.

Claiming Compensation for a Fatal Injury

Losing a loved one in a fatal accident on a construction site is a devastating experience, to say the least. While compensation can never replace the loss, it may provide some comfort to know that typically, the immediate family members of the deceased, such as spouses, civil partners, children, or dependents, are eligible to claim within three years of the death or the date the death was linked to the accident. This includes financial dependents who may not be direct relatives.

If you’d like to find out more about what compensation you may be entitled to, please contact our team by phone or our live chat service.

How Is Liability Determined in Construction Accident Cases?

Before a work accident claim is settled, liability for the accident and any subsequent injuries needs to be established.

At the start of the construction accident claims process, the claimant will usually send a letter of notification to their employer. This letter is simply to notify the employer and their insurer that a claim is likely.

Next, a letter of claim will be sent to provide more details about the claim. It will include information about the accident on a construction site, injuries and any costs they have caused.

If the employer accepts liability at this point, those involved in the claim will move on to work out a fair settlement. If they don’t evidence will be swapped by both parties so that they can decide who was liable for the accident.

Do I Need a Solicitor to File a Construction Accident Claim?

You are not obliged to use a solicitor for construction accident claims. However, using a specialist can make the claims process easier and result in a swifter resolution.

Many personal injury solicitors work under a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA). This means that they’ll provide a No Win, No Fee service. For example, you wouldn’t pay a solicitor on our team for their work upfront and you won’t pay them while the claim is being processed or if it is lost.

If the claim is successful, you will have up to 25% of your compensation deducted as a success fee. This is the legal cap that applies when using a CFA.

How Long Do Construction Accident Claims Take to Settle?

The time taken to settle construction accident claims varies from case to case. The amount of time it takes for your claim to be finalised will depend on several factors. They include:

  • The severity of your injury i.e. whether you’ve recovered already or whether more time is needed to understand your prognosis.
  • Whether liability for the accident can be established quickly or whether more time is needed for negotiation.
  • If both parties can reach an agreement on the amount of compensation for a construction accident that should be paid.

Working with a specialist accident-at-work solicitor can make the claims process far less daunting. That’s because they understand the pre-action protocols and the claims process in detail so they’ll work hard to ensure all evidence, documents and other information are filed with the defendant on time.

What Happens if My Compensation Claim Goes to Court?

If a compensation claim cannot be settled, it may need to go to court. In our experience this is quite rare but can happen if:

  • Liability for the accident cannot be agreed upon.
  • The defendant does not accept responsibility for the full extent of the injuries.
  • The claimant does not agree to accept the settlement offered by the defendant’s insurance company.

You will be informed of the date of any court hearing in advance. An out-of-court settlement is still possible up until this date.

If the case does get heard in court, generally your solicitor will use a barrister who’ll manage court proceedings and put your case forward. If the judge finds in your favour, they’ll decide the level of compensation you’re to receive. If they find in favour of your employer, you may be liable for their costs (but your solicitor may have arranged insurance to cover this).

Contacting Us About a Construction Accident Claim

If you or a loved one has been injured on a building site and would like to start a construction accident claim, or just get some expert advice you can:

  • Speak to a member of our team by calling 0333 241 2519.
  • Use our free live chat service.

We provide no-obligation legal advice and a completely free initial consultation to discuss your options. If your claim appears to be valid, we could connect you with one of our solicitors who’ll work on a No Win, No Fee basis if your construction accident claim is taken on.

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