What Is The Employer’s Responsibility When A Worker Is Injured?

By Cat Grayson. Last Updated 5th Septemeber 2023. If you’re injured at work, you may need to be treated in a hospital or stay at home while you recover. On top of the pain and suffering that results from your injuries, taking time off could mean you lose out financially too. So, what is the employer’s responsibility when a worker is injured? During the course of this guide, that’s the question we’ll provide answers to. If you decide to claim compensation for your injuries, you might want to know what can be claimed for and how much could be paid. Therefore, we’ll provide some example compensation figures as well.

While it is true that no workplace may ever be completely free from risk, employers have a duty of care to try and make the workplace as safe as possible. That is a legal duty that is derived from the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974. Later on, we’ll look at other legislation that could be used to base a compensation claim on. Then we’ll explain when workplace accidents need to be reported and whether problems might arise if you take legal action against your employer.

What is the employers responsibility when a worker is injured guide

What is the employer’s responsibility when a worker is injured guide

If you are considering claiming following a workplace accident, we are here to help you. Our team of specialist advisors provide free legal advice about claiming. Additionally, they will review your claim on a no-obligation basis. After your free telephone consultation, our advisors could forward your claim to a personal injury lawyer from our panel. Importantly, if the lawyer decides to work for you, they’ll use a No Win No Fee agreement to fund the case.

Please call us today on 0161 696 9685 if you’re ready to begin your claim. Otherwise, please carry on reading to find out more about employer responsibilities for injured workers.

Select A Section

  1. Calculating Workplace Injury Compensation Claims
  2. Types Of Special Damages You Could Claim
  3. What Are An Employer’s Responsibilities When A Worker Is Injured?
  4. Which Laws Protect Employees At Work?
  5. What Are My Rights If Injured At Work?
  6. How To Prove An Employer’s Liability
  7. What Workplace Injuries Should Be Reported?
  8. Injured At Work – Claim With A No Win No Fee Solicitor
  9. Reference Information

Calculating Workplace Injury Compensation Claims

Later on in this guide, we’ll discuss how to claim if you’ve had an accident at work, and your employer’s responsibilities in the workplace. But first, we’ll explain compensation in accident at work claims.

All successful injury at work claimants will receive general damages, which is one of two heads of claim you can pursue. General damages cover the pain and suffering caused by your injuries and the effect they have on your life.

The Judicial College Guidelines (JCG) can help when calculating this head. The JCG provides guideline compensation amounts for a number of different injuries. Below, you can find some examples of these brackets taken from the 16th edition of the JCG. Please note that these amounts are not guaranteed, and are only guidelines.

Edit
Body Part Injured Severity Compensation Range Further Information
Cheek Serious £10,200 to
£15,780
Cheekbone fractures which are serious enough to cause lasting problems like paraesthesia.
Neck Minor £4,350 to
£7,890
Soft tissue damage of the neck, where the victim recovers fully in around one to two years without surgery.
Back Moderate £12,510 to £27,760 Muscle or ligament disturbance that causes backache and prolapsed discs which mean laminectomy is necessary.
Shoulder Serious £12,770 to £19,200 Dislocated shoulder injuries and additional damage to the lower brachial plexus.
Leg Amputation £97,980 to £132,990 This category is for a below the knee amputation of one leg.
Ankle Modest Up to £13,740 An example in this category is the turning of an ankle which results in tendon damage.
Feet Modest Up to £13,740 Covers puncture wounds, ruptured ligaments and also simple metatarsal fractures.

You might also be entitled to claim for special damages, which we explain more in the following section. Contact our team of advisors today to learn more.

Types Of Special Damages You Could Claim

The next part of an accident at work claim relates to costs and financial losses caused by your injuries. Known as special damages, this compensation is paid to try and restore you to the financial position you were in before the accident occurred.

As with general damages, these types of claims vary from case to case, but you could ask for:

  • Medical expenses. While you won’t need to pay for treatment on the NHS, you could claim for the cost of treatments that you do pay for. Also, prescription fees and the cost of other medications could be recovered.
  • Care costs. If you need support with daily tasks because you’re unable to cope because of your injuries, you could claim for any associated costs. For example, you could calculate an amount to cover the time a friend spent looking after you.
  • Travel costs. This could include costs incurred because of medical appointments. Some examples include fuel costs, parking fees or public transport fares.
  • Lost earnings. If you need time off work to recover, it can prove costly. Therefore, you could claim back any income lost because of your injuries.
  • Home adaptations. Should you be left with a disability after your accident, changes to your home may be necessary to help you cope. If that is the case, you could claim the cost of those changes.
  • Future lost income. For any injury which means your ability to work is impaired in the long-term, you could claim future lost earnings. Your age, job prospects and current salary will all be considered in this category.

For more advice on what you could include in your claim, please call our team of advisors today.

What Are An Employer’s Responsibilities When A Worker Is Injured?

An employer has a legal duty of care to try and keep you as safe as possible in the workplace. That duty doesn’t just apply to full-time employees, though. Temporary, part-time and contract workers are also covered.

To meet their legal duty, employers have a number of responsibilities that they must adhere to. These include:

  • Providing regular and adequate job training.
  • That adequate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) is provided where necessary.
  • To maintain all machinery and equipment.
  • Carrying out regular risk assessments and removing any dangers where possible.
  • If a danger cannot be removed, safety measures such as warning signs or handrails should be used to reduce the risk.
  • To ensure members of staff know about the company’s health and safety procedures.

Hopefully, this answers the question, ‘What is the employer’s responsibility when a worker is injured?’ If you require any further advice, please call a specialist from our team today.

Which Laws Protect Employees At Work?

As well as the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974, many more pieces of legislation protect staff in the workplace. These include:

  1. Equality Act 2010
  2. Employment Rights Act 1996
  3. The Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013 (RIDDOR)
  4. Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992

This list is not comprehensive and there are other laws that could apply to your case. However, if you choose to work with a personal injury lawyer on our panel, they’d handle the legalities for you. Using their experience and legal training, your lawyer would work out how your employer possibly breached their duty of care to you.

More importantly, your lawyer would help to gather the evidence you need to support your claim. After it has been submitted, they’d handle all communication with your employer’s insurers for you. If any objections are raised, your lawyer would try to counter them by referring to the evidence you have supplied.

What Are My Rights If Injured At Work?

When an accident at work occurs, you have the right to:

  • Seek medical treatment for your injuries.
  • Start a compensation claim if you did not cause your injuries. In some cases, if you were partly responsible, a claim could still be possible.
  • Remove yourself from the workplace if you think it is too dangerous to continue working.

Your employer is not able to stop you from doing any of the above. If they were to do so, contact our advisors and they’ll discuss your options with you.

Employee responsibilities for workplace safety

As well as employers, all employees have a duty of care with regards to workplace safety. That means that you need to carry out your work in a safe manner at all times. You should take care of your own safety and consider whether your actions impede the safety of those around you. You should make use of any protective equipment you’ve been supplied with, follow your training, and report any safety problems to the appropriate person. If you don’t, it might impact your claim.

Other scenarios where a claim might not be possible could include accidents you caused because you:

  • Were under the influence of drink or drugs.
  • Were messing around and acting recklessly.
  • Failed to adhere to health and safety practices.

To check if you could be eligible to make a claim, please contact our team today.

How To Prove An Employer’s Liability

As with any injury claim, evidence is required to prove how the injury was sustained. Therefore, we would advise taking the following actions following a workplace accident:

  • Photograph the scene of the accident as soon as you’re able to.
  • Report the incident to a supervisor as soon as you can. Accident report logs can help to confirm when the accident took place and what happened.
  • Take down the contact details of any witnesses who saw what happened. Also, staff who didn’t see the accident could provide a statement if they testify that the workplace was unsafe. Consequently, you could take their contact details too.
  • Request copies of medical records from a hospital or GP who treated you.
  • Try to obtain CCTV footage if the site of the accident is covered.

To find out what evidence you could obtain and how, speak to our team. They also offer a free claim assessment. Using their experience, they’ll be able to tell you if you have sufficient information to support your claim or if anything further is required.

Time Limit For Claiming If Injured At Work

As set out in the Limitation Act 1980, the time limit for starting a personal injury claim is three years. This time limit normally begins from the date of the accident that caused your injury.

The time limit can be different under certain circumstances. For instance, the time limit is paused for those under the age of 18 until their 18th birthday. Before that day arrives, a claim could be made on the child’s behalf by a court-appointed litigation friend. If a claim has not been made by their 18th birthday, they will have three years to start one.

If the injured party lacks the mental capacity to start their own claim, the three-year time limit is indefinitely suspended. However, a litigation friend could make a claim on the injured party’s behalf. If the injured party were to regain the mental capacity to claim later, then the time limit will start from the date of recovery if one has not already been made.

For more advice on how to make a personal injury claim after being injured at work, you can contact our advisors today.

What Workplace Injuries Should Be Reported?

As mentioned above, all workplace accidents should be reported to your employer. They should keep an accident report book or similar recording method. The accident report should include details like the accident location, date and time, those involved, the injuries sustained and any treatment that was offered.

In addition to this, some accidents need to be reported to the Health and Safety Executive under the RIDDOR legislation mentioned earlier.

The list of injuries that need to be reported to the HSE include:

  • Those that cause the employee to take time off work for more than 7 consecutive days.
  • Certain work-related diseases.
  • Certain near misses (or dangerous occurrences).
  • Any other reportable injury.

If you are of the opinion that your workplace injury was not your fault, you could ask for a copy of the accident report before contacting us. You should be allowed a copy, so please let us know if your request is refused.

Injured At Work – Claim With A No Win No Fee Solicitor

If you have been injured at work in the UK, you might seek the help of a lawyer to help you make a workplace accident claim. However, if you are worried about paying for a lawyer that requires upfront payment, a No Win No Fee solicitor could be beneficial.

Through a No Win No Fee arrangement, you will only have to pay a success fee if your claim is settled. Your lawyer will deduct this success fee from your compensation if your claim succeeds, but the amount is capped under the Conditional Fee Agreements Order 2013. If your accident at work claim fails, you won’t be responsible for paying their fees.

If you wish to check your eligibility to make an injured at work claim, get in touch with our advisors at any time. Additionally, they can answer any questions you may have, such as, ‘what are the employers responsibilities after an accident at work?’.

If you do wish to proceed and would like our help, we can be contacted by:

  • Telephone: Call our specialist advisors on 0161 696 9685 and you’ll be offered free legal advice about your claim.
  • Online: Complete this online claim form to submit details of your case. An advisor will call back at a convenient time.

Reference Information

We have tried to answer the common question, ‘What is the employer’s responsibility when a worker is injured? In this final section, we have added some links to information you may find useful if you decide to claim. If you need to know anything else, you can use our live chat or give us a call; our advisors are available 24 hours a day.

Health And Wellbeing At Work: Information on what employers can do to support your wellbeing in the workplace.

Using Hazardous Substances At Work: Advice on COSHH guidelines for employers whose staff use dangerous substances.

NHS 111: The service you can call if you’re not sure what to do about a medical problem.

Below, you can find links to lots more guides on accidents at work: