Advice On How To Sue A Hairdresser For Cutting You

By Stephen Kane. Last updated 14th July 2023. Have you sustained a cut to the ear or the scalp at the hairdressers? If so, did you know that in some cases, you could sue a hairdresser for cutting you?

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You should expect to be treated with a certain amount of care when you go to get your hair cut. After all, hairdressing scissors are sharp and could cause some serious damage. If a hairdresser or barber has been negligent when it comes to using scissors or razors and you have suffered a laceration, it could be quite unpleasant. It could also lead you to be eligible to make a personal injury claim against them.

Here at Advice.co.uk, we could help you if you want to sue a hairdresser for cutting you. Our advisors could offer free legal advice tailored to your specific case and could check your eligibility to claim. We could also put you in touch with a personal injury lawyer that could help you start a hairdressing negligence claim. All you need to do is call our expert advisors on 0161 696 9685.

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A Guide On How to Sue A Hairdresser For Cutting You

We have created this guide to help those who have suffered cuts and scars from a hair salon or barbers. In the sections below, we explain how you could claim if a hairdresser cuts you. We also explain the duty of care that a barber or hairdresser has towards their customers. In addition, we look at how to calculate compensation payouts for hairdressing injuries.

When you get a haircut, you would expect to leave the salon feeling good. If a barber or hairdresser has cut you, you may have to go and get medical attention. You may even be left with an infection and this could cause permanent scarring. This guide has been created to show you how to take action against a hairdresser that has cut you if it was caused by their negligence.

There is a certain duty of care that a barber or hairdresser has towards their customers. If they cause harm to a client and breach that duty of care, you could seek compensation. The below sections explain more about how to make such a claim.

Sue A Hairdresser For Cutting You: Compensation Calculator

To give you an idea of compensation amounts for hairdressing injuries, we look to the Judicial College Guidelines. This legal publication, which is updated regularly, provides guideline compensation payouts for a range of injuries. This could give you some insight into how much your injury could bring you in terms of compensation.

For the nature and severity of your injury to be evidenced, you would need to see an independent medical expert. They would review your medical notes (if available), examine you and produce a report. This report may prove your injuries were caused or worsened by the incident. And it’d present the expert’s view on your prognosis. Lawyers could use this vital piece of evidence to calculate compensation for your injuries.

We believe the table below represents a useful alternative to a personal injury claims calculator. If you cannot find your injury in the table below, please call our team. We’ll be happy to discuss your injury with you over the phone.

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Injury Severity of Injury Comments Judicial College Guidelines Bracket
Psychiatric damage Severe Where claimants now find life very difficult and the prognosis of their mental well-being is very poor. £54,830 to £115,730
Psychiatric damage Moderate Where claimants have struggled with their ability to cope, but a full recovery looks likely. £5,860 to £19,070
Psychiatric damage Less severe This range of compensation will be considered based on how much everyday tasks and disrupted sleep affected claimants. £1,540 to £5,860
Facial disfigurement Very severe scarring Where the psychological effects are severe and the scarring is very disfiguring. £29,780 to £97,330
Facial disfigurement Less severe scarring Substantial scars that cause a significant psychological reaction. £17,960 to £48,420
Facial disfigurement Significant Plastic surgery can reduce the appearance of the scars. Additionally, the psychological reaction is relatively minor, even if it was considerable. £9,110 to £30,090
Damage to hair (a) Dermatitis, eczema or tingling/burning of scalp resulting in dry, coarse and brittle hair that breaks or falls out. This causes emotional distress. £7,340 to £11,020
Damage to hair Less serious Where symptoms are fewer or only minor (e.g. cases where hair has been pulled out leaving bald spots, but regrowth is possible). £3,950 to £7,340
Neck injuries Minor (i) Where claimants completely recover within 1 to 2 years. £4,350 to
£7,890

Additional Damages That May Be Awarded

Damages awarded for personal injury claims could vary depending on the facts and the circumstances of the case. Here, we explain the types of damages you could claim.

General Damages

These damages relate to the loss of amenity, suffering, and pain victims encounter due to their injuries. Examples of general damages for hairdressing injuries are in the table in the previous section. These are known as non-pecuniary losses, which means they have no quantifiable financial cost.

Special Damages

Special damages relate to the pecuniary (financial) costs incurred by victims of personal injury. Pecuniary costs could include:

Costs Of Care

If a victim sustains severe injuries, they may require care at home. The costs of such care could be recoverable as special damages. You may have suffered psychologically due to your cut injury, and needed family or friends to help you carry out daily tasks like cooking or cleaning. You could reclaim their time monetarily.

Loss of Earnings

If you had to take unpaid time off work and lose out on income, you could claim such losses. Loss of earnings could include bonuses and overtime.

Medical Costs

If you have paid for prescriptions or for counselling, for example, you could include the fees for these within your claim.

Travel Costs

Have you had to pay to travel to medical appointments or therapy? Or have you paid for travel to a meeting with your lawyer? You could also recover these costs as part of your claim.

It is vital to keep evidence of any costs you are claiming. Bank statements, payslips and receipts could be useful when you are claiming special damages.

What Is A Hairdresser, Hair Salon Or Barber Cut Injury?

In this guide, we explore whether you could sue a hairdresser for cutting you. If you’re thinking about suing a hairdresser for cutting you, you would need to prove:

  • They had a duty of care to protect your safety.
  • They breached this duty.
  • The breach of their duty of care towards you caused you injury.

How Could Hairdressing Injuries Happen?

There are various ways in which a hairdresser could cut you, including:

  • Using equipment with a missing safety guard (such as clippers, for example).
  • Not paying attention to the position of the scissors or shaving equipment.
  • Not maintaining equipment to a safe standard (such as not sharpening scissors or not cleaning equipment).

We should mention that not all cuts and scars from a hairdresser could lead to you suing them. Some cuts can be trivial, heal within a day or two without any scarring or infection and not cause your mental health to suffer at all. If you are acting dangerously, you may be considered at fault for an accident in which you sustained a cut. This could affect your eligibility to make a claim. If you’re concerned that you may be partially to blame for your injury, contact our team of advisors to find clarity on whether you could claim.

What Is A Hairdresser Cut Or Laceration Injury?

If you are injured by a barber or hairdresser, and you sustain a cut, this means that your skin would be broken. Examples of hairdresser or barber injuries could include:

Cuts And Lacerations To The Scalp

A hairdresser who acts negligently with scissors near your head could cut your scalp. Scalp cuts could cause scarring if they are serious enough.

Cuts And Lacerations To The Ears

While some cuts to the ear may only be small nicks, others could cause heavy bleeding, and you may need to seek urgent medical attention to treat them.

Cuts And Lacerations To A Mole

A cut to a mole could result in heavy bleeding. Moles have a good blood supply, and you may require cauterisation to stop the bleeding.

Treating cuts from a barber or hair salon would depend on the severity and site of the injury. In general, the following advice should apply:

  • Stop the bleeding. Apply pressure to the wound using absorbent, clean and dry material.
  • Clean the site and apply a dressing.
  • Take painkillers if required.

When To Seek Medical Advice For A Cut Or Laceration

If you are worried about a scalp injury, a mole injury or another type of cut, you should seek medical attention. If you suffer heavy bleeding you may need stitches, so you should seek medical attention as quickly as possible.

Seeking medical attention if a hairdresser or barber cuts you won’t just mean your injury is attended to. You would also have a record of your injury, which you could use to help support your claim if you choose to sue a hairdresser for cutting you.

Barbers And Hairdressers Duty Of Care

Whether you pre-book an appointment with a barber or hairdresser, or you walk into a hair salon without an appointment, the person cutting your hair has a duty of care towards you. They should ensure that equipment is clean, maintained and safe to use. They should also make sure that they do not put you at risk of harm, by ensuring they use equipment safely.

If a hairdresser is not paying due care and attention to the position of the scissors or is not concentrating properly, they could cut you. If they do so, and you could prove their negligence, you could make a hairdresser injury claim.

Health And Safety Regulations For Hairdressing

When you visit a hairdresser or barber, they should take care of your safety by ensuring their negligence does not harm you. Barbers and hairdressers have a duty of care towards clients, but the businesses are unregulated. If a professional cuts you in a salon, they may be breaching the duty of care required of them under the Occupiers’ Liability Act 1957. This Act requires controllers of premises, land or property to ensure that all visitors are reasonably protected against anything that could harm their health, safety, or wellbeing.

Other health and safety legislation that could apply to a barber or a hairdresser could include:

Hairdressing compensation claims could be the result of injuries caused by a hairdresser using cutting scissors negligently. They could also result from negligent use of hair dyes or other hair products. If you’re not sure whether your hairdresser could be held liable for your injuries, we could offer free legal advice to see if you could make a claim.

Injuries Caused By A Hairdresser Cutting You

If your hairdresser is negligent when using sharp objects, such as hairdressing scissors near your head, they could cut you. While you might only sustain small cuts, facial or scalp wounds could affect you psychologically. Additionally, if a negligent hairdresser lacerates your scalp, this could affect hair growth. If you sustain cuts to your face or ears, these could scar. Both of these issues may cause you concern about your appearance. If your mental health is affected by the injury, you could claim compensation for the psychological damage as well as financial loss and the injury.

Can You Sue A Hairdresser For Cutting You If It Causes Scarring?

While many cuts heal on their own, there could be the potential for a cut to become infected. This could happen if the hairdresser doesn’t sterilise their equipment, for example. Infections could affect the healing process, leading to scarring. Suppose you have suffered scarring to your face or body because of a negligent hairdresser. In that case, you could claim compensation for the scar itself and the psychological effects you experience because of the scarring.

Wet Shave Cut And Laceration Injuries

If you have visited your hairdresser or barber for a wet cut or shave, they would need to use sharp implements. Barbers and hairdressers must make their tools safe to use. They can do this by sterilising the equipment they use and ensuring they sharpen it well. If they use electrical shaving equipment such as clippers, they should also ensure that the equipment is in good working order. A failure to make sure the equipment they use is vital in providing a safe shave.

It isn’t just the equipment that a barber or hairdresser should take care of. They should ensure they are careful when wielding their tools. If they are not careful, they could cut you. Negligence at the hairdressers of this type could also lead to a claim.

Infections Caused By A Hairdresser Cutting You

We mentioned earlier on in this guide that, in some cases, a cut could become infected. Whether there was heavy bleeding at the site of the cut or it was only a small nick, there is still the potential for infection to set in.

How Can You Tell If A Laceration Is Infected?

According to the NHS, a wound is at risk of infection if:

  • There was something inside the wound before you cleaned it.
  • It has a jagged edge.
  • It’s longer than 2 inches.
  • It is contaminated with dirt, pus or bodily fluids.

Signs of an infected cut could include:

  • Swollen glands (usually in the neck, groin or armpit).
  • A temperature of 38°C or above.
  • Pain, swelling and redness around the site.
  • Pus formation.
  • General symptoms of being unwell.

You should seek medical attention for an infected cut. In some cases, you might be given antibiotics to help treat the infection. In some cases, where you have an infection, you would not receive stitches until the infection clears up.

Hairdresser Cut And Laceration FAQs

Why May I Be Asked To See A Trichologist?

If your hairdresser or barber has cut you, and you are suing a hairdresser or barber for negligence, you may have to attend an appointment with a trichologist. This is a doctor that specialises in hair and scalps. They could examine and hair or scalp injury to see what treatment you may need in the future and assess how badly damaged the area is. Their report could help to evidence your claim for compensation.

How Do I Sue A Hairdresser?

You could sue a hairdresser for cutting you without a lawyer. However, claims could be complicated and you may find the process much less stressful with a legal professional on your side. If you would like us to help you find a personal injury lawyer, we would be happy to help.

What Evidence Would I Need To Sue A Hairdresser For A Cut?

Evidence that could be useful could include:

  • Your own account of what happened – the sooner you write this, the fresher it will be in your mind.
  • Photographs of the scene and your injuries – if it is possible for you to take photos, these could prove useful.
  • Any witness details – taking contact details means your lawyer could approach them for a statement later.
  • Medical evidence from an independent medical expert – you would need to see a medical expert at part of your claim.
  • Proof of financial losses – this includes counselling bills, bus tickets for travelling to and from appointments or anything else that proves you spent or lost money because of your injury.

Hairdressing Compensation Claims Time Limit

Hairdressing compensation claims must be started within the personal injury claims time limit. The Limitation Act 1980 states that claimants typically have three years to start a claim. This is three years from the date that the injury occurred or become apparent. However, certain circumstances lead to the suspension of the time limit.

The time limit is suspended when:

  • The claimant is under the age of 18. During this time, however, a litigation friend could be appointed to pursue a claim on their behalf. If a litigation friend does not start suing a hair salon on their behalf, they will have three years after they turn 18 to start a claim.
  • Hairdressing compensation claims time limits are also suspended when the claimant lacks the mental capacity to start a claim. Similarly, a litigation friend could be appointed to act on their behalf in a personal injury claim. However, if a litigation friend does not start a claim while the time limit is suspended, they will be given three years from the date of regaining capacity to start a claim.

If you’re still wondering if ‘can I sue a hairdressers more than 3 years after the incident?’, get in touch today. Our advisors can provide a free eligibility check and more information on how to sue a hairdresser if their negligence caused you harm.

Can You Take A Hairdresser To Court?

You would not always have to go to court to settle personal injury claims. In many cases, personal injury claims can be settled out of court. Your lawyer could negotiate a settlement for you without court action. However, if your case went to court, your lawyer could support you through the process.

Suing A Hairdresser With A No Win No Fee Solicitor

If you are eligible to make a personal injury compensation claim against a hairdresser, you may be wondering if you can start your case with the help of a solicitor. If you contact our advisors about suing a hairdresser, then they may connect you with one of the No Win No Fee solicitors on our panel.

A No Win No Fee solicitor from our panel may offer to support your hairdresser injury claim under a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA). Under this agreement, it won’t be a requirement for you to pay your solicitor any upfront or ongoing fees for their services. You also won’t need to pay them for any work completed on your case if it is unsuccessful.

If your hairdresser injury claim is a success, then the solicitor can take a legally capped percentage from the compensation awarded to you. This is generally referred to as a success fee.

For more advice on claiming compensation with a No Win No Fee solicitor, you can contact our advisors. You can reach them by:

  • Giving us a call on 0161 696 9685
  • Using our online contact form
  • Or you can send us a message on our 24/7 online live chat service.

Resources

Hair Removal Injury Claims – if your injury claim relates to hair removal, this guide could be useful. It explains in what instances you could claim for an injury caused by negligent hair removal.

A case study for a £32,000 compensation payout for loss of hair and when you may be able to make a claim.

Workplace Accident Claims – if you’ve been injured at work in a hairdresser’s, this guide could help.

Find A Trichologist – here you can find out how to find a trichologist and what issues they could help you with.

Hair Loss – some types of scalp injury could lead to hair loss. Find out more about hair loss on the NHS website.

Scarring Treatments – this guide from the NHS discusses the treatments available for scarring. If you are looking for treatment options to reduce scarring, this guide could be useful.

Learn More About Public Liability Claims

Check out some of our other guides on public liability claims:

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