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Serious Injury at Work – A Guide to Claiming Compensation

While any type of accident at work can lead to a lot of pain and suffering, others are much more serious. Examples of serious workplace injuries are those that lead to long-term consequences for a worker or their family and those that lead to life-changing conditions. Importantly, if you’ve sustained a serious injury at work as a result of your employer’s negligence, you could be entitled to begin a personal injury claim. As such, this guide answers questions about claiming compensation for a serious injury at work and how the claim process works.

Serious injury compensation claims can become quite complex but you don’t have to go it alone. We are here to help if you’ve sustained a serious injury at work by offering a free initial consultation. As well as providing no-obligation legal advice, we could partner you with one of our specialist solicitors if your claim is valid. If that happens, they’ll work for you on a No Win, No Fee basis.

To find out more about how we could help you begin a serious injury compensation claim, you can:

  • Call our team on 0333 241 2519.
  • Use our free live chat service when it’s convenient for you.

Getting legal advice as soon as possible after suffering serious workplace injuries can significantly enhance the chances of receiving compensation for your pain, suffering, and financial losses incurred due to the incident.

Can I Claim Compensation for a Serious Injury at Work?

Your employer has a legal obligation to protect you while you’re at work. This is a duty of care taken from the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974. If the duty is breached as a result of your employer’s negligence, you could begin a serious injury claim where:

  • You require prolonged or ongoing medical treatment for your injuries.
  • There has been a significant impact on your life.
  • Your injuries have meant you needed a long time away from work or you can no longer work in the same role as before the accident.
  • You are highly dependent on others or need full-time care for your injuries.

You could be entitled to claim compensation for serious injuries if:

  • At the point of your accident, your employer owed you a legal duty of care.
  • The accident only happened due to negligence by your employer.
  • You sustained a serious work injury in the accident.

Our friendly advisors are here to review your claim and point you in the right direction. Their initial consultation is free and there’s no obligation to pursue a compensation claim following the call so please get in touch and let us assess the merits of your case today.

Types of Serious Workplace Injuries We Can Help With

Some examples of serious work-related injuries that we can potentially help get compensation for include:

  • Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI): Typically resulting from falls from height, being struck by an object, or work vehicle accidents.
  • Spinal cord injuries: Such as those leading to partial or complete paralysis, again, often due to falls from height or heavy lifting.
  • Amputations: Loss of a limb or digits due to machinery accidents or severe crushing injuries.
  • Severe burns: Typically caused by fires, chemical spills, or electrical accidents.
  • Multiple fractures: Often sustained in falls, vehicle accidents, or from being crushed by heavy objects.
  • Loss of vision/hearing: Due to chemical exposure, explosions or constant exposure to loud noise.
  • Industrial disease: From long-term exposure to harmful substances like asbestos or silica.
  • Crush injuries: From working with heavy machinery and equipment.
  • Electrical injuries: Typically caused by coming into contact with live wires or faulty electrical equipment.

These are just some examples of the types of serious workplace injuries that could lead to compensation claims. If you’d like us to check whether you might qualify for a compensation payout, please call our team today.

What Should I Do After a Serious Accident at Work?

If you are involved in an accident at work that results in serious injuries, you should:

  • Seek treatment at a hospital right away. Generally, for serious injuries, the emergency services should be called.
  • When possible, report the accident to your employer. In most cases, the accident should be recorded on the company’s accident report system.
  • Write down as much as you can about how the accident occurred at your earliest convenience.

Serious injuries at work will usually need to be reported to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). This probably won’t be your responsibility but you should certainly comply with them if they investigate the incident.

What Evidence Can Help With Serious Workplace Accident Claims?

It is vital to present as strong a case as possible when making a serious injury claim. This should prove how your accident occurred, who caused it and, importantly, how you’ve suffered since.

The types of evidence that could be used to make your claim stronger include:

  • Details of anyone who saw the accident in case witness statements are needed.
  • Copies of your medical records, x-rays and details of any surgery or treatment.
  • CCTV footage if the workplace accident was recorded.
  • A copy of your company’s accident report. This should help to prove when and where you were injured.
  • Photographs of the accident scene. Taking pictures of the cause of the workplace accident is very helpful if you can do so safely.

As part of our free initial consultation, we’ll review any evidence you’ve already collected. If your claim proceeds, your solicitor may source further information to support it if required.

What is the Time Limit for Serious Work Injury Claims?

The Limitation Act 1980 states that personal injury claims in the UK have a 3-year time limit. For workplace accidents, this usually begins from the date of the accident. However, in certain circumstances, this might not apply. For example:

  • If you were in a coma immediately after the accident, your time limit would not begin until your date of knowledge i.e. when you came round and became aware of what happened.
  • If the serious injury left the injured party without the mental capacity to take action, there is essentially no time limit while their condition exists. However, a friend or relative could claim on their behalf at any time by acting as a litigation friend.

In our experience, it’s best to begin the serious injury claims process as soon as you can. This will allow enough time for hard evidence and other information to be collected to support your case.

How Much Compensation for a Serious Injury at Work?

Any compensation awarded for a serious work injury should reflect the amount of suffering it has caused. If you do receive serious injury compensation, it will usually cover:

  • Your pain, suffering and loss of amenity (general damages).
  • Any expenses or financial losses (special damages).

Usually, serious injuries will need to be assessed by an independent medical expert. Their report could be used in conjunction with your medical records and then compared with settlement brackets listed in the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG).

We’ve used some example figures in our compensation table but, as each serious injury claim is different, the amounts listed cannot be guaranteed.

  • Compensation for severe upper or lower spinal injuries that may lead to paralysis or affect internal organs can range between £38,780 and £160,980.
  • Damage to hearing resulting in complete hearing loss in one ear may attract compensation between £31,310 and £45,540.
  • Total blindness can result in a compensation payout in the region of £268,720.
  • Significant facial disfigurement and severe scarring may warrant compensation between £29,780 and £97,330.
  • Moderately severe head injuries causing significant brain damage may attract awards between £219,070 and £282,010.
  • Compensation for the amputation of one or both legs, considering whether the amputation is below or above the knee, can range from £97,980 to £282,010.

In some cases, the special damages element of a serious injury claim could be more valuable than general damages. That’s because they can cover:

  • The cost of a full-time carer.
  • Short and long-term loss of income.
  • The cost of modifying your home to make it easier for you and your family to cope with any permanent disability.
  • The cost of moving to a new specially-adapted home.
  • Medical and rehabilitation costs.
  • Travel expenses.

It can take some time to get a full understanding of how you’ll be affected financially because of your injuries. Working with one of our specially trained solicitors should make the process less stressful as they’ll work hard to try and ensure no aspect of your suffering is left out of your claim. Please call today if you’d like to know more.

serious workplace injury background

Take the first step towards claiming compensation for a serious injury at work 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.

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

Can Serious Injury Claims Include Compensation for Mental Harm?

Being involved in a serious accident at work can cause:

  • Anxiety, stress or depression.
  • Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
  • Flashbacks and sleep problems.
  • General psychiatric damage.

As such, if you’ve been diagnosed with work-related PTSD or other psychological problems following a serious accident at work, any compensation you receive should take your suffering into account.

How Is Liability for a Serious Work Injury Established?

There are two important steps required if you’re to win compensation in a serious injury claim:

  1. Proving liability for the accident.
  2. Proving liability for your injuries.

In some cases, your employer might accept liability for the accident but deny liability for your injuries. In other cases, they might deny liability for both. In either case, your solicitor must try to persuade your employer’s insurance company about why you’re entitled to serious injury compensation.

Usually, this will involve the insurer raising objections and your solicitor trying to counter them by supplying strong supporting evidence and vice versa. This process will go on until both parties can reach an amicable agreement.

Do You Need a Solicitor for Serious Injury Claims?

As shown above, insurers may try to limit how much compensation for a serious injury they pay or even attempt not to pay a single penny if possible. Therefore, while you don’t need to employ a solicitor to start a claim, it might be a good idea to do so.

If you work with a No Win, No Fee solicitor from our team, they will:

  • Analyse any evidence you supply and collect further information if required.
  • Shield you from any complex questions made by the insurance company.
  • Argue your case and supply evidence to try and counter any objections raised regarding liability.
  • Send you regular updates on how your claim is progressing.
  • Try to secure as much serious injury compensation as needed to cover all of your suffering.

Importantly, if your claim is taken on by one of our specialist solicitors, they will work on your claim on a No Win, No Fee basis using a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA) so:

  • No legal fees for your solicitor’s work are paid upfront.
  • Your solicitor won’t ask for their work to be paid for while the claim is ongoing or if it fails.
  • You’ll have a success fee (capped at 25 per cent when using a CFA) deducted from any settlement you receive).

To see if you could make a No Win, No Fee serious injury claim, please call our team today.

How Long Do Serious Injury Claims Take?

It’s fair to say that serious injury compensation claims can take a year or more before they are finalised. The two main factors that can make the claims process longer are:

  • How long it takes for liability to be proven or accepted?
  • How long you take to recover or for your prognosis to be fully understood?

If your employer accepts that they caused the serious workplace accident and injuries, you could receive interim compensation payments. These will be designed to help with any immediate costs such as medical or care fees and loss of income.

Do Serious Injury Claims Go to Court?

Usually, solicitors and insurers try to avoid court hearings in any type of personal injury claim. That’s because they are often time-consuming and expensive.

In a small number of cases, though, a court date might be set as a last resort. If that happens, the court will decide whether your employer caused your injuries and, if so, how much compensation you should receive.

In some serious injury claims, courts could award a lump sum payment as well as annual payments to cover care and medical costs.

Importantly, if the claim fails, you might be told to pay your employer’s legal fees. However, our solicitors will always make sure that an insurance policy is in place to cover these costs before they offer to work for you.

Contacting Us About a Serious Injury Claim

Please get in touch if you have any further questions or are interested in discussing a serious injury claim with one of our specialists. To do so, you can:

  • Call 0333 241 2519 to speak to an advisor.
  • Connect to our live chat service to ask any questions.

We’ll provide no-obligation legal advice in the 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 serious injury claim is taken on.

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