Suffering an injury is traumatic enough, but coupled with the worry of the financial implications around loss of earnings and possible costs for medical treatment, an accident at work can be very stressful.
Taking action after experiencing an accident at work often worries people as they think it will impact on their job security, however, your employer has a duty of care toward you under the 1974 Health and Safety at Work Act. This means that they have a legal obligation which requires them to adhere to standards of care while you’re at work.
If you’re going to claim, evidence is key. Your employer should have an accident book to record anything that’s happened and seeking medical advice after your accident - something you’re entitled to do even if it’s not a severe injury - will mean it’s officially recorded. You can also register the accident as an industrial injury with the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).
If the cause of your injury was the fault of another employee, your employer is still responsible. Vicarious liability means that your employer is accountable for the actions of its employees, so there is no need to worry that you’re not eligible to make a claim in these circumstances.
Another concern you may have is putting your company out of pocket. Your employer will have liability insurance and if you claim against it, it’s dealt with by its insurance company. This means that the money doesn’t directly come from your employer; it’s the insurer that pays any compensation.
Accidents at work should be taken seriously. Some injuries can result in loss of life. If you don’t take any action, then employers could continue to be negligent to you and others in your workplace.
Finally, it’s understandable that you may be worried about being dismissed for making a claim against your employer. While there is no guarantee that you won’t be, it’s worth remembering that it is illegal for your employer to discharge you for making a claim for an accident at work.
Being armed with the facts will hopefully take some of the worry out of making a claim against your employer. If you’ve suffered an accident at work, taking legal advice is recommended. When claiming for accident at work be sure to use a solicitor that specialises in personal injury and has a good success rate of winning compensation on behalf of their clients.