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.
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
- A Guide: What Is The Employer’s Responsibility When A Worker Is Injured?
- Calculating Workplace Injury Compensation Claims
- Types Of Special Damages You Could Claim
- What Are An Employer’s Responsibilities When A Worker Is Injured?
- Which Laws Protect Employees At Work?
- What Are My Rights If Injured At Work?
- How To Prove An Employer’s Liability
- What Workplace Injuries Should Be Reported?
- Could I Be Dismissed For Having An Accident At Work?
- No Win No Fee Accident Claims When A Worker Is Injured
- Contact Us
- Reference Information
A Guide: What Is The Employer’s Responsibility When A Worker Is Injured?
As an employee, you have a number of employment rights. Some are regarding how much you are paid, and some relate to time off work if you’re going to be a new parent. The right that we’re going to discuss in this guide is the right to a safe working environment. While many employees will go through their working life without any issues, accidents can happen. Therefore, we’re going to answer the question ‘What is the employer’s responsibility when a worker is injured?’
It doesn’t matter what type of workplace you’re based in. The Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 aims to protect you if you work on a building site, in an office, in a school or anywhere.
One of the responsibilities an employer should abide by is having an insurance policy in place to cover accident claims. That means that if you do suffer an injury caused by employer negligence, you could claim and, if your case is successful, your employer may compensate you through the insurance. You shouldn’t feel scared to claim either, as it is against the law to be disciplined for doing so. We’ll expand on that further on in this guide.
Any workplace accident claim must be submitted within the claims time limit. Generally, this is a 3-year period from the date of injury. However, some injuries, like industrial diseases, take many years to manifest. Therefore, your time limit could begin from the date of knowledge that the injury was caused by negligence (such as when your injury was diagnosed).
Advice.co.uk is here to help if you would like to make a claim. An advisor will explain your legal options after reviewing your case for free. If they believe your claim is strong enough, they could refer it to a No Win No Fee lawyer from our panel.
Calculating Workplace Injury Compensation Claims
Before we begin answering the question ‘What is the employer’s responsibility when a worker is injured?’, we’re going to look at potential compensation amounts. We have covered a number of different injuries in the compensation table below. However, don’t worry if you can’t see an injury that matches your own. We could still help you with your claim.
Importantly, the figures listed are for reference only. As each claim is unique, we’ll only be able to supply a more personalised estimate once your claim has been assessed thoroughly. The part of your compensation that covers pain and suffering is called general damages. Our table contains general damages amounts as listed in the Judicial College Guidelines. This is a document that lawyers, barristers and insurers use to help set the correct compensation amount for injuries.
|Body Part Injured||Severity||Compensation Range||Further Information|
|Cheek||Serious||£9,570 to £14,810||Cheekbone fractures which are serious enough to cause lasting problems like paraesthesia.|
|Neck||Minor||£4,080 to £7,410||Soft tissue damage of the neck, where the victim recovers fully in around one to two years without surgery.|
|Back||Moderate||£11,730 to £26,050||Muscle or ligament disturbance that causes backache and prolapsed discs which mean laminectomy is necessary.|
|Shoulder||Serious||£11,980 to £18,020||Dislocated shoulder injuries and additional damage to the lower brachial plexus.|
|Leg||Amputation||£91,950 to £124,800||This category is for a below the knee amputation of one leg.|
|Ankle||Minor||£6,820 to £11,820||An example in this category is the turning of an ankle which results in tendon damage.|
|Feet||Modest||Up to £12,900||Covers puncture wounds, ruptured ligaments and also simple metatarsal fractures.|
When making a claim, you’ll need to prove that the accident caused (or worsened) your injuries. If you can’t, you may not be compensated fairly. Therefore, as part of the claims process, you’ll need to visit an independent medical specialist. Our panel of lawyers usually arranges these to be local to you to avoid the need for excessive travel.
During your medical assessment, the specialist will review your medical records (if available) and look at the current state of your injuries. They’ll then ask some questions about how you have been affected. Once the appointment ends, they’ll put their findings in a report and send it to your lawyer. Your lawyer can then use this to help them value your injuries.
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.
What Are An Employer’s Responsibilities When A Worker Is Injured?
As we explained in the opening section of this guide, 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.
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:
- Equality Act 2010
- Employment Rights Act 1996
- The Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013 (RIDDOR)
- 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.
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.
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.
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.
Could I Be Dismissed For Having An Accident At Work?
Many employees fail to start a compensation claim following an accident at work because they are fearful that they’ll lose their job. Another reason is that they believe a compensation payout could affect the operation of the company.
However, it is unlawful to be disciplined, treated differently or dismissed for making a workplace injury claim. If that were to happen, you could make a separate action to claim for unfair dismissal.
Furthermore, claims aren’t generally made against the company you work for itself. Instead, they are made against the insurance policy your employer is legally obliged to hold so won’t impact the company’s profits directly.
No Win No Fee Accident Claims When A Worker Is Injured?
On occasion, some claimants choose not to claim and miss out on compensation they could be entitled to because they’re worried about losing money on solicitors’ fees. To counter that worry, our panel of personal injury lawyers manage all cases they accept on a No Win No Fee basis. That means you could get expert legal representation, but your claim could be a lot less stressful.
It goes without saying that not all claims are accepted. Before your claim is taken on, a lawyer will check over it with you. If they decide to proceed, and you are happy to continue, you’ll receive a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA) to read. The CFA explains what the lawyer has to achieve if they want to be paid. Additionally, it will show that:
- Money isn’t a barrier to claiming as no upfront charges are made.
- Your lawyer won’t ask you to pay any of their fees while the claim is being processed.
- If the claim does not succeed, you won’t have to cover the lawyer’s fees at all.
For a lawyer to be paid, they need to win your case and you need to be compensated. If that happens, the lawyer will deduct a success fee from your settlement. This fee is a small, fixed percentage of your award. You’ll know about the percentage you’ll pay before you sign the CFA. Also, to prevent overcharging, success fees are capped legally.
Thank you for visiting Advice.co.uk today. Hopefully, the answers we’ve provided about ‘What is the employer’s responsibility when a worker is injured?’ has helped you decide if you’ll make a claim. 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.
- Live Chat: Discuss your case with one of our online specialists.
- Online: Complete this online claim form to submit details of your case. An advisor will call back at a convenient time.
We always try to keep the claims process as simple as possible. When you get in touch, we won’t waste your time or offer false hope about your chances of being compensated. An advisor will listen carefully to the details of your case. They’ll also provide free legal advice about your options. Should your claim appear feasible, you could be partnered with an injury lawyer from our panel. To reduce your financial risk, they’ll provide their service on a No Win No Fee basis.
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.
Advice.co.uk supports many people with different types of claims. Therefore, we have listed a few more of our guides below.
Psychological Injury Claims: As well as physical injuries, you could also seek compensation for psychological injuries which happen as a result of an accident that wasn’t your fault.
Claiming For A Cycling Accident: This article looks at when you could start a claim for injuries sustained while riding a bike.
Historical Sexual Abuse Claims: Information about how the normal claim time limits may be extended for historical abuse cases.
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