Employers have a legal duty to try and prevent workplace accidents. Slips and falls in the workplace are fairly common accidents that could be prevented if safety measures are put in place. However, according to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), slips, trips and falls caused 30% of the workplace injuries recorded in 2020/21.
Importantly, if you slipped and fell at work because of somebody else’s negligence, you may have grounds to file an accident claim for compensation. While that is something might be thinking about already, there are a few things you can do immediately after your slip and fall accident, to protect yourself and lay the grounds for a successful claim.
To find out more about what to do if you slipped and fell at work, please continue reading. Alternatively, you can call us on 0800 6524 881 to find out your options at any time.
Table of contents
- Tend To Your Injuries
- Report The Accident
- Create A Record In Your Works Accident Book
- Take Photographs Of The Scene Of The Accident
- Make Sure Colleagues Know About Your Accident
- Keep A Record Of Injuries, Symptoms, And Medical Treatments
- Keep A Record Of Your Accident-Related Expenses
- Speak To A Personal Injury Solicitor
- Can I Claim Compensation For My Slip And Fall At Work?
- How Do Slips And Falls In The Workplace Commonly Occur?
- Common Injuries Caused By Slipping And Falling At Work
- What Does Slip And Fall At Work Compensation Cover?
- Time Limits For Making A Claim
- Starting A Slip And Fall At Work Compensation Claim
This is the single most important thing you should do if you have slipped and fallen at work and suffered an injury as a consequence. Do a quick assessment of your injuries and ask a work colleague to get a first-aid kit if required or call an ambulance if your injuries are too severe to be treated by a first-aider.
Regardless of how minor your injuries appear at the time of the slip and fall accident, do not make the mistake of overlooking them. Sometimes, symptoms manifest after a day or two and if timely treatment is not received, a minor injury could become a permanent disability. Get yourself checked by a medical professional no matter how severe or minor your injuries may seem.
Reporting your slip and fall accident at work to your manager or supervisor is important. You need to make sure that they are aware that an accident happened in case you need to claim compensation at a later date. At this time, you are not blaming anyone for the accident. You are merely reporting an accident at work happened.
Every organisation is legally required to keep an accident book on site. Use this to create a record of your slip and fall accident. This creates a paper trail of your accident, which you can use at a later date to strengthen your case. Without a written record, it could be your manager’s word against yours, which is something that can weaken your claim.
If you cannot find the accident book on-site or are refused access to it for whatever reason, make sure you send an email to the manager. This will also serve as a written record.
With photographic evidence supporting your claim, you do not have to worry about management disputing that the accident ever happened or shirking their responsibility for why it happened. Photographs provide strong support to a fall at work claim and can protect you from getting into a ‘your word against theirs’ situation. Even better if you can get a video or CCTV footage showing the cause of your accident and the surrounding areas.
Get photographs of your injuries too. If you cannot do this yourself, ask another colleague to get photographs of your injuries.
If any of your colleagues witnessed your fall at work accident ask if they will come forward to provide witness statements if necessary to support your claim. While some may be afraid to come forward because of the fear of repercussions, most workers will be happy to help, knowing that it could very well have been one of them.
Although your doctor is sure to have kept a record of your symptoms and treatments, it is always a good idea for you to keep your own records too. This will help you if your doctor overlooks a minor symptom, which then develops into a long-term debilitation condition at a later time. Your personal records will help make the connection between your injuries and your deferred symptoms.
Expenses can start to mount up very fast after an accident. In addition to any medical expenses, also keep a record of the cost of travelling back and forth for any treatment, the cost of any kind of mobility aids or the cost of hiring home care if necessary.
If you win the claim, you could be reimbursed for all of these expenses as well as the loss of income at work.
A personal injury solicitor is your best ally if you are injured in a slip-and-fall accident at work. For a start, experienced solicitors who specialise in accident at work claims should have thorough knowledge in this area of the law.
Our solicitors protect their clients’ interests further by offering a No Win No Fee agreement, which essentially means they fund all the proceedings until the case is closed. Last but not least, you know you are getting the best legal representation while you take the opportunity to rest and recover from your injuries.
As we first mentioned, employers have to try and keep you as safe as possible at work. This is their legal duty as set out by the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. You could be eligible to claim if you slipped and fell at work if:
- Your employer was negligent in some way; and
- You slipped and fell as a result of their negligence; and
- You were injured during the fall.
Each of the criteria listed should be true if one of our personal injury solicitors is to take on your claim. For example, if you slipped and fell at work but your employer had no way of foreseeing the accident, it’s highly unlikely they’d be found negligent and so a claim would not be possible.
There is a multitude of ways in which you could slip at work. As explained above, not all can be put down to employer negligence. However, if your employer did something or failed to do something that caused you to slip and fall, you could be eligible to claim. For example, slips and falls at work caused by the following could all allow you to sue your employer if you’ve been hurt:
- Recently cleaned floors with no warning signs.
- Icy paths in the company’s car park that had not been gritted.
- A lack of anti-slip footwear if you’re expected to work on a slippery surface.
- A lack of handrails when working in wet areas or conditions.
- Inadequate safety training.
- Leaks or spillages in the workplace that were not cleared up promptly.
If you believe you have suffered following a fall at work that was caused by your employer, why not call today to speak with a specialist?
Some of the most common injuries resulting from slips and falls at work that could lead to a claim include:
- Sprains, strains and other soft tissue injuries.
- Fractures or broken bones.
- Head injury and concussion.
- Cuts and lacerations.
- Severe bruising.
- Slipped discs and other back injuries at work.
While some of the injuries you might sustain in a fall at work may heal in just a few days, other injuries may be considerably more severe or even life-changing.
The extent of your suffering will need to be assessed by an independent medical specialist if you make a personal injury claim. After they’ve discussed your injuries with you and examined them, they’ll produce a report for your solicitor to explain your prognosis. This will form a basis for the settlement you’ll claim.
Many people are worried about the consequences of making a claim against an employer. That shouldn’t be the case though because:
- Your employer’s profits should not be affected by the claim as it will be paid by their liability insurance policy if successful; and
- It is illegal for you to be disciplined, treated differently, sacked or picked on because of your claim (so long as it is honest).
Therefore, please don’t worry about contacting us. If your claim is taken on, your solicitor will handle all communications with your employer’s insurers so you won’t have to deal with any questions at work.
If you make a successful claim for a slip and fall at work, it could include damages to cover:
- Any physical pain and suffering (at the time or ongoing).
- Distress, embarrassment, anxiety or other forms of mental harm.
- Medical expenses such as physiotherapy costs or prescription fees.
- The impact your injuries have on your usual family or social activities.
- The cost of a carer.
- Travel expenses.
- Loss of earnings and future losses too for longer-term injuries.
- The cost of buying items to replace those damaged in your fall.
- Home adaptations to make life easier if you’re left disabled following a fall at work.
There is a lot to consider when making a personal injury claim but it’s important to get this stage of the claims process right. If you work with a solicitor from our team, they’ll try to ensure that any compensation you receive is fair and covers all of your sufferings.
There is a time limit of 3-years for all workplace injury claims in the UK. As you’ll usually know about the injuries straight away, the time limit will begin from the date of your accident.
Although 3 years appears to be a long time, it’s often better not to wait too long to begin the claims process. Starting early can make it easier to secure evidence to support your claim.
Also, if your employer accepts liability for your injuries straight away, your solicitor could ask them to pay for private medical treatment or physiotherapy before the claim is finalised.
Please call our team on 0800 6524 881 if you’d like to find out whether you could be compensated for a workplace fall.
Whatever you decide to do, we’ll provide free legal advice and explain your options. If your claim is accepted, one of our solicitors will manage it on a No Win No Fee basis.
Hopefully, our guide has answered the question, “I slipped and fell at work, what should I do?” but please feel free to connect to our live chat service if you need to know more.