Chemical burns can be extremely painful, and even after the pain subsides, you may have to live with its long-term consequences. These could range from lifelong discomfort to disfigurement at the site of the burns. If you’ve suffered burns from chemicals in an accident that wasn’t your fault, you may be entitled to file a chemical burn claim for compensation.
Causes Of Chemical Burns
Chemical burns are caused when the skin comes in contact with a harsh chemical or irritant. Some of the more common substances that cause chemical burns include ammonia, sodium hydroxide, sulphuric acid, and nitric acid. You might suffer a chemical burn if you use a faulty product that contains one of these toxic chemicals, if you work in a workplace where one of these substances is used or if you are a victim of an acid attack.
Common accidents that may result in chemical burns include but are not limited to:
- Unsafe storage of chemicals in the workplace
- Chemical spillages while using or transporting the toxic substance
- Faulty product injury
- Contact with household bleach, car-battery acid or chlorination products meant for swimming pools
- Acid attacks
Some substances emit toxic fumes, causing internal chemical burns if you inhale the fumes or swallow the substance accidentally. Shortness of breath, seizures and irregular heartbeats are all symptoms of a potential internal chemical burn. These injuries may not be visible immediately but if you suspect you may have inhaled or swallowed a toxic substance, it is advisable to go to the hospital for a check-up immediately.
If any of the above caused you to suffer chemical burns and was due to somebody else’s negligence then you might want to contact us to speak with a personal injury solicitor as it is likely you have a chemical burns claim.
Short And Long Term Consequences Of Chemical Burns
Acid and chemical burns have short and long term consequences. When the chemical first comes in contact with the skin, it causes intense irritation and a burning sensation instantly. This is followed by redness of the skin.
A mild chemical burn affects only the topmost layer of the skin. This type of mild burn heals normally with immediate first-aid and regular care that includes taking measures to prevent infection. The healing time is relatively short and any scarring is minimal.
A severe burn affects several layers of skin and requires more than just simple first-aid. A visit to the hospital is a must to receive proper medical treatment to alleviate the pain and reduce the chances of infection. Very severe chemical burns may require extensive hospitalisation during which time the dressing is changed regularly and the wound cleaned and inspected to prevent the high incidence of infection. Severe burns can take several years to heal. Depending on the location, severity, and extent of the chemical burn injuries, the doctor may recommend a skin graft to replace the burnt skin with healthy skin. In the most severe cases, chemical burns leave permanent scarring and disfigurement.
If chemicals come in contact with the eyes, it can impact your vision, leaving you partly or completely blind.
If your chemical burns resulted from an accident that was due to somebody else’s negligence or mistake, you must get in touch with a personal injury solicitor to determine your right to make a chemical burns claim for compensation.
Making A Chemical Burn Claim
If you think you can make a chemical burns compensation claim, there are plenty of personal injury solicitors who now provide a free consultation. The solicitor or an advisor will discuss with you what chemical burns you have suffered and to what extent, and what evidence you may already have that might help prove where the fault lies.
These are some examples of evidence that can help to strengthen your chemical burn claim:
- Photographs of your injuries at the time of the accident
- Photographs of the scene of the accident
- An entry in an accident book with a written record of the accident
- Witness statements if you have any
- Medical records along with your doctor’s prescribed line of treatment
If the evidence points strongly to the chemical burns being caused due to somebody else’s fault, you would be advised to go ahead with filing a chemical burns claim. If your case sounds weak with a good chance of losing, the solicitor will advise you not to proceed with the case.
How Much Compensation For Chemical Burns?
The exact amount of compensation for chemical burns will depend on the severity and extent of your injuries as well as your actual financial losses, better known as General Damages and Special Damages.
Your solicitor will claim compensation for your pain and suffering, all medical expenses including treatment and transportation for the ongoing treatment, loss of income, counselling, and the cost of hiring an in-home carer if necessary. Keeping a record of all your expenses related to the accident can help your solicitor claim for the maximum amount due to you.
With regard to General Damages (pain and suffering), the Judicial College guidelines currently suggest the levels of compensation for burn injuries (including chemical burns) are as follows:
- Significant burns that cover 40% or more of the body, compensation is likely to exceed £89,440.
- Very severe facial scarring – £25,400 to £83,050
- Less severe facial scarring – £15,320 to £41,310
- Significant facial scarring – £7,780 to £25,670
- Less significant facial scarring – £3,370 to £11,730
- Minor facial scarring – £1,460 to £3,010
- Damage to hair – £3,370 to £9,400
No Win No Fee Chemical Burns Claim
A No Win No Fee chemical burns claim essentially means you will not pay anything until the case has been closed, and only if it is successful. According to the terms of our No Win No Fee agreement, we cover all legal costs. You only pay a set percentage (no higher than 25%) of the compensation once the chemical burns claim has been won and compensation has been received. If you do not win any compensation, you will not pay anything.
To speak with a personal injury solicitor about a chemical burn claim free of charge, please get in touch with us today.