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Spine Injury at Work – A Guide to Claiming Compensation

Suffering a spine injury at work can cause long-term problems for both you and your family. As well as the physical constraints you might face, you could also face financial difficulties if you can’t work for example. As your employer has a duty of care towards your well-being, if you suffered a spine injury caused by their negligence, you could be entitled to claim compensation. Therefore, this guide answers common questions on the process of claiming compensation for spinal injury.

If you or a loved have been affected by a work-related spinal injury, we can help. To start, you can ask one of our legal advisors to review your claim for free. You’ll receive no-obligation legal advice on what you could do next and, if we believe your claim is feasible, you could be connected to a specialist solicitor. They’ll also provide a No Win, No Fee service if you decide to proceed.

To discuss your case in more detail, you can:

  • Contact us now on 0333 241 2519.
  • Tell us about your claim via our online chat service.

Please get in touch if you need our help or read on for more on how spinal cord injury claims work.

Can I Claim Compensation for a Spine Injury at Work?

While you are at work, you may have seen signs in the staffroom about the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974. This is the primary piece of health and safety legislation in the UK that places a duty of care on your employer to take reasonable steps to try and protect you while you’re working.

Some of the practical steps that employers need to take to try and prevent spinal injuries at work include:

  • Risk assessing the workplace regularly to spot hazards that can be removed.
  • Provide personal protective equipment if there is no other way to protect staff.
  • Have an up-to-date safety policy and ensure that staff receive adequate safety training.
  • Ensure all equipment, machinery and workplace vehicles are properly maintained.
  • Keeping the workplace tidy and organised.

Failure to meet their obligations under the Health and Safety at Work Act could mean employers have been negligent. You might be entitled to claim compensation for a spinal cord injury at work if:

  • At the time of your workplace accident, you were owed a duty of care by your employer.
  • Your employer’s negligence caused you to have an accident.
  • As a direct result of that accident, you suffered a spinal cord injury that’s been diagnosed in the last three years.

We’re here to help if you or a loved one would like to claim spinal injury compensation. If you’d like to know more about how we can support you, please call our legal advisors now.

What Types of Spinal Injuries Can We Help With?

Spinal injuries can be devastating and cause you to be reliant on others for the rest of your life. While the most severe spinal cord injuries can result in complete or partial paralysis, less serious back injuries can still cause serious pain and disability.

Some common symptoms linked to spinal injuries at work that we can help claim compensation for include:

  • Chronic neck and back pain.
  • Lack of movement in the arms and/or legs.
  • Bladder or bowel control problems.
  • Walking difficulties.
  • Loss of sexual function.
  • Numbness (or tingling) in your hands or feet.

While various types of paralysis can occur following a spinal cord injury at work, the most common two are:

  • Paraplegia – where the injured party loses control of both legs.
  • Quadriplegia – where the injured party loses control of both legs and arms. Quadriplegia is also referred to as tetraplegia.

If you or a loved one has suffered spine damage in the workplace, please get in touch and one of our specialists will review your case with you and explain your options for free.

What Types of Negligence Can Lead to a Spine Injury Claim?

We can’t list every possible scenario that could result in a spine injury claim here but we’ve included some examples of how damage to the spinal cord can result from employer negligence.

  • You were told to work on a scissor lift in adverse weather conditions and your employer failed to provide a safety harness. As a result, you fell 15 meters to the ground and were left paralysed from the waist down.
  • You slipped on a wet floor caused by a radiator that was known to be leaking. A fractured spine meant you were hospitalised and were unable to work for more than a year.
  • Whilst working in a warehouse, a forklift accident caused you to be crushed against a wall. A severe lumbar spine injury left you completely paralysed and requiring full-time nursing care for the rest of your life.

Even if we’ve not described your accident type here, you’re still welcome to call our team to discuss your claim with a legal advisor.

What Evidence Can Be Used for a Spinal Injury Claim?

If a spinal injury claim is feasible, it may be taken on by one of our specialist solicitors. Their role will be to present enough evidence to show how your accident happened, that your employer was responsible and how your spine injury has affected your life.

Some examples of the types of evidence that might be needed include:

  • Details of any treatment you’ve required and copies of your medical records.
  • Statements from witnesses who were present when your accident occurred.
  • Camera phone or CCTV footage from the accident scene.
  • A copy of your company’s accident report form.
  • Photographs that help to identify the cause of your accident.
  • Health and Safety Executive (HSE) investigation reports.
  • Financial records to show the impact of your spinal cord injury.

Whether you’re claiming for yourself or on behalf of a loved one, we are happy to check what evidence you have already as part of your free consultation. If a spinal injury claim is taken on by one of our solicitors, they’ll work hard to gather further information if required.

How Long Do I Have to Claim Compensation for Spinal Injury at Work?

In UK law, the Limitation Act 1980 sets a 3-year time limit for personal injury claims. Usually, this will begin from the date of the accident at work.

However, if the injured party is incapacitated and lacks the mental capacity to deal with a spinal injury compensation claim, the time limit is effectively paused while that remains the case, although someone else could apply as a litigation friend and claim on their behalf.

In either case, we’d suggest getting in touch as soon as you’re able to. That’s because cases involving spinal cord injuries are, perhaps, some of the most complex claims. That means that time-consuming work will need to be carried out before the claim is filed.

spinal damage xray background

Start the process of claiming compensation for a spine injury at work with a completely free consultation.

Our solicitors, with 30+ years of experience, provide a 100% No Win, No Fee service, giving claimants a risk-free option to pursue the compensation they deserve.

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

How Much Compensation for Spinal Injury at Work?

As you might imagine, spinal injuries affect people in many different ways. As such, any suffering you’ve endured needs to be carefully considered when calculating a compensation settlement.

If your claim is successful, the compensation payout will be based on:

  • General damages – to compensate for pain, suffering and loss of amenity.
  • Special damages – to cover any immediate or ongoing costs.

Specialist independent reports and copies of your medical records will help your solicitor get a full understanding of how the spine damage has impacted your life. When valuing the general damages element of your claim, they might also refer to the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG). Importantly, a successful spine injury claim can compensate for both physical and psychological suffering.

To give you some idea of the settlement brackets for spinal damage, we’ve used JCG data in the table below. However, as claims are so different from case to case, these amounts are not guaranteed.

  • Compensation of around £91,090 – £160,980 for the most severe spinal cord and nerve root injuries.
  • £74,160 – £88,430 for less severe nerve root damage.
  • £38,780 – £69,730 for fractured vertebrae (fractured spine) or disc lesions that result in chronic conditions.

For damage to the spinal cord particularly, special damages could make up the larger part of your settlement as they can cover any immediate costs as well as any long-term financial implications. That means your payout could cover:

  • The cost of full-time nursing care.
  • A new, specially-adapted, home or the cost of adapting your current home to help you cope with your disability.
  • Medical and rehabilitation costs.
  • Lost income – including future losses for long-term spinal injuries.

If you’d like to know the potential value of a spine injury compensation claim, please call the number above today.

Do I Need a Solicitor to Claim Compensation for Spine Injury?

In the eyes of the law, you could make a spinal injury at work claim yourself but this might not be your best option. As alluded to before, spine damage claims are often complex, time-consuming and involve difficult legal and medical questions. For these reasons, you may wish to instruct a solicitor specialising in workplace personal injuries to make life easier. Not only that, but without their expertise you might not get the settlement you truly deserve.

As part of their service, they could:

  • Manage your spine injury compensation claim from beginning to end.
  • Collect the evidence needed to try and prove your case.
  • Use their legal training to try and counter any legal arguments raised by your employer.
  • Make sure that you are fully aware of how the claim is progressing.
  • Try to negotiate a settlement that covers all of your current and future suffering.

To reduce the financial risks associated with instructing a solicitor, ours use a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA) to provide a No Win, No Fee service. This means that you:

  • Won’t pay any legal fees for your solicitor’s work upfront or during the claims process.
  • Won’t pay for your solicitor’s efforts if the claim is lost.
  • Will pay a success fee (a percentage of your compensation) if the claim is won.

To ensure you retain the largest share of any compensation, the success fee percentage when using a CFA is capped legally at 25 per cent.

If you’d like to find out if you can instruct a No Win, No Fee solicitor to claim compensation for spinal injury at work, please call today.

Do Spine Injury Compensation Claims Go to Court?

Generally, accident-at-work claims are settled amicably by solicitors and insurance companies. However, some spinal injury compensation claims will require court hearings to decide upon liability, settlement amounts or both.

If the court finds in your favour, they may instruct your employer to pay a lump sum compensation amount plus annual payments for the rest of your life to cover any ongoing costs as described earlier.

Contacting Us About a Spine Injury at Work Claim

To check right now whether you have strong enough grounds to claim compensation for a spinal injury, you can:

  • Call 0333 241 2519 to explain your case.
  • Use our live chat system.

Getting legal advice on a spine injury at work claim as soon as possible can significantly enhance the chances of receiving the compensation you deserve for the pain, suffering, and financial losses you might have incurred due to the injury.

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