It is an indisputable fact that accidents can happen in the workplace, but getting injured at work can seriously affect your health, making it hard for you to continue doing your job in your original capacity. This can make it much harder for you to earn enough money to support yourself and your family. Accidents at work can also leave you with lifelong health problems which affect your overall quality and enjoyment of life. If either of these scenarios sounds familiar to you, then you may be entitled to make a claim for compensation.
Will I have to leave the company if I make a claim?
Some people feel very nervous about making a claim for an accident which has affected them in the workplace, because they are worried that a claim may be perceived as a lack of loyalty to their employer. However, most companies have a duty to have their own insurance policies to cover any personal injuries which happen to their employees in the workplace. This means that many insurance claims for work-related injuries are actually dealt with by the employer’s insurance company, rather than through a direct consultation with the employer.
Even if you are forced to make a claim directly from your employer, there is legislation in place to prevent you being disciplined or dismissed for the claim itself. If you are sacked, disciplined or made to feel unwelcome after your claim, you may have another claim on your hands and your employer may be found to be at fault by an employment tribunal.
What counts as a work related claim?
There are a lot of different types of work related claims, as the injuries which you sustain can depend on what sort of industry you work in. The most common types of claims are relate to slipping or tripping on debris which has been left on the floor, being injured during lifting or manual handling tasks, being attacked by clients in environments where employers have failed to provide adequate security measures for staff, repetitive strain injury, and coming into contact with dangerous or harmful chemicals. Whilst many of these things are hazards associated with certain jobs, employers must make adequate provisions to remove or reduce all risks.
Are there limitations on making a claim?
Due to the 1980 Limitation Act, most people are only allowed to pursue a claim within 3 years of the date that that person was injured or within 3 years from the date when it was discovered that the injury or illness was linked to a workplace related incident. In certain circumstances, the limitation period may be extended. For example, if that person dies as a result of the incident to which the claim refers to, the estate of the deceased party will have 3 years from the date of death of the person who was involved or 3 years from the date which the cause of death was ascertained. For people aged under 18 at the time of the incident, they will have 3 years from their 18th birthday in which to begin proceedings.
How do I make a claim?
In order to have the best chance at making a successful claim, you will have to take your claim to a professional solicitor or claims advisor. By discussing your claim with them, you will be able to discover whether you have a legitimate and valid claim or not. Many professional advisors will be able to offer you a free, informal consultation session, where you will be able to discuss the events you wish to make a claim about.
Once you have made an agreement with your legal advisor or solicitor, they will be able to help you to compile all of the evidence which you need to make a proper case. This can include formal medical reports, information from your employer’s accident book, witness statements and records which help to detail your loss of earning potential. Your solicitor will be able to help you to negotiate with the opposing party, so that you will be able to claim an appropriate amount of compensation. They will also be able to help you to prepare properly if your claim ends up going to court.