An industrial injury encompasses injuries that occur across all types of workplaces. For example, workplaces such as offices, factories, supermarkets, and building sites. Whatever industry you work in, you should expect your employer to try and keep you as safe as possible. If they don’t and you’re injured as a result, you may be eligible to make an industrial injury claim for compensation.
In this guide to industrial injury claims, we’ll explain when compensation might be possible for accidents and injuries such as falls, machinery-related injuries, Repetitive Strain Injuries (RSI), electric shock, accidents involving chemicals, and other workplace accidents. Additionally, we’ll explain what types of negligence could result in a claim and the amount of compensation you could be eligible to claim.
To speak to a solicitor today about making an industrial injury claim, please call us on 0800 6524 881. For more information about the claims process before calling, please read on.
Table of contents
- Who Is Responsible For Protecting Workers From Industrial Injury?
- Am I Eligible To Make An Industrial Injury Claim?
- Examples Of Industrial Accidents And Injuries That Could Result In A Claim
- How Much Compensation For An Industrial Injury Could I Claim?
- Industrial Injuries Compensation Calculator
- Evidence To Support An Industrial Injury Compensation Claim
- Time Limits For Claiming Industrial Injury Compensation
- Starting The Industrial Injury Compensation Claims Process
The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 states that employers are responsible for the safety and welfare of their staff in the workplace. However, even though every worker has their own responsibilities to keep themselves safe from injury, unfortunately sometimes it is out of their control. An individual worker may not have control over all aspects of the workplace, and this itself could put them at risk of industrial injury even if they adhere to all safety precautions.
To safeguard the rights of workers everywhere, certain Health and Safety laws and regulations have been put into place. There is legislation that is relevant to Working at Height, Health and Safety at Work, Control of Hazardous Substances, and Manual Handling among others. While each of these governs very specific areas, they all put the onus on the employer to keep their workers safe from harm.
Ultimately, it is the employer’s responsibility to ensure that all mandated protective measures have been put in place and that all safety guidelines are being followed. If a worker is injured because an employer failed in their responsibility or was negligent in any area, the employer is liable to pay the worker industrial injury compensation for their injuries.
In order to determine whether an industrial injury claim is viable, a personal injury solicitor will need to demonstrate that:
- Your employer was negligent; and
- That led to an incident, accident, or ongoing situation at work; that
- Caused you to suffer an industrial injury or illness.
There are several ways that negligence in the workplace could lead to you suffering from an accident or illness and we’ll look at some examples shortly. Before we do, it’s important to note that if you do decide to seek industrial injuries compensation, you cannot be sacked for doing so. Laws are in place to protect your rights after an accident at work to prevent that from happening and you can’t be dismissed, demoted, treated differently, or excluded from anything if your claim is honest.
Some industrial accidents are typical of certain industries, while others are common across all industries. Common industrial accidents leading to a claim for compensation include:
Any machinery can be dangerous if not handled properly. While heavy machinery such as forklift trucks and cement mixers may result in more severe or even fatal injuries, workers can also suffer from cuts, lacerations, blindness or fractures from workplace machinery that may not look as menacing.
If any of these injuries were caused because of negligence you may be eligible to claim industrial injuries compensation.
Some jobs involve performing repetitive movements for extended periods of time. Without the proper precautions or training, these can cause several different types of injuries including carpal tunnel syndrome and RSI, repetitive stress injury to the back, neck and elbow.
Even a small object falling from a height can result in serious injuries, from concussion to broken bones. Fall from height injuries can occur in any workplace, from offices to warehouses. Falls from height are a risk to many workers on construction sites.
Factories are notorious for being extremely loud. Exposure to these high noise decibels every day for several hours a day can result in industrial deafness. While loud noise may be unavoidable, there are certain things that can be done to protect workers’ hearing.
If enough isn’t done to prevent damage to your hearing and you suffer industrial deafness this is when you could make a claim for industrial injuries compensation.
Several industries use toxic substances in their manufacturing process. Accidental exposure to any of these substances by way of inhalation, ingestion or direct contact, can cause an array of injuries, from skin irritations to chemical burns and respiratory illnesses.
Although the use of asbestos has been banned for several years, workers may still be exposed to this lethal substance from old pipes and other older construction materials.
Construction and building site workers and those working for electrical contractors are at a high risk of suffering electric shock injuries but they are not the only ones. Employees in many workplaces might be at risk of electric shock at work due to poor maintenance, exposed electric wires, or leaking electrical currents.
In addition to the above, spine, back, hand, finger or brain injuries could occur due to several other reasons due to lax safety procedures, inadequate personal protective equipment, faulty machinery, poor space management and shortcuts. If any of these injuries are due to a lack of duty of care you could have an industrial injury claim.
As each industrial injury claim is unique, generally the amount of compensation a claimant might receive will consist of two main parts:
- General damages are sought to cover your pain, suffering and loss of amenity. Your solicitor will arrange for you to attend a local medical assessment to help determine the level of your injuries. This will be with a medical expert who is independent of the claim.
- Special damages are based on monetary losses, costs and expenses incurred as a direct result of your accident. You could claim for any property damaged in the accident, medical costs, travel costs and also any lost earnings.
More information on these damages can be read here.
Each claim is different and so the amount you could claim will be based on how you’ve been affected physically, mentally, and financially. To learn what could be included if you make an industrial injuries compensation claim, please call today.
As mentioned at the beginning of this guide, we are going to demonstrate how much could be paid for industrial injuries. To help with this, we’ve included an injury compensation calculator below. The settlement amounts in the calculator are based on the Judicial College guidelines. Personal injury solicitors, lawyers, and insurers use those guidelines when calculating settlement amounts.
Importantly, no two industrial injury claims will ever be the same and so compensation amounts can vary. Therefore, please don’t rely solely on the figures in our calculator. If your claim is accepted, your solicitor will explain how much they’ll try to claim once they’ve reviewed your case in detail.
As with any other type of personal injury claim, evidence is needed when claiming compensation for industrial injuries. Therefore, if you are injured at work, you could:
- Report the accident. Your employer must then report the incident/accident and provide you with a copy of the accident report. This would make it difficult to deny that the accident took place.
- Take photographs. A picture of the workplace accident scene can go a long way to showing what caused the incident to occur. That’s especially true if you can capture the scene before anything is removed.
- Note any witnesses. If any of your work colleagues witnessed what happened, ask them to supply their contact details. If liability for the accident is denied, your solicitor may ask the witness for a statement later on.
- Arrange treatment. You should not rely solely on first aid for any injuries. By visiting a hospital or minor injuries unit, your wounds will be assessed properly and treated. Your medical records could then be used to support your industrial injuries compensation claim.
- Request security camera footage. Many workplaces use CCTV to keep staff safe. If that’s true in your case, ask for any footage that captured your accident.
Once you have gathered as much evidence as you can, you can call us for free to check if you have the grounds to proceed. A member of our team will review your evidence with you and let you know your options.
When you claim industrial injury compensation following an accident at work, you’ll need to start within the relevant time limit. This is a 3-year period that will begin:
- From the date your accident at work happened and when you sustained your injuries; or
- The date of knowledge. This is used in cases where your injuries or illness were not immediately obvious. For example, some industrial diseases like those relating to asbestos exposure take years to develop. In this case, the 3-year time limit would commence from the date of your diagnosis.
As soon as you are aware of your injuries, we’d suggest you start your claim. That’s because, while 3-years might seem a fairly long time, it can be easy to forget what happened the longer you wait. Additionally, personal injury solicitors have a lot of work to do during any compensation claim such as evidence gathering and arranging medical assessments. Therefore, the earlier you start your claim, the more time they’ll have to get everything in order.
If you’re not sure how long you have to start your claim, please call our advisors today.
Even if your employer seems supportive of the fact you’re claiming for your industrial injuries, they won’t typically deal with the claim themselves. It will instead be handed to the company’s insurance company to deal with. Insurers won’t normally admit liability or pay compensation unless you can prove to them that the injuries you suffered were caused by your employer’s negligence. That is something that can be tricky and might require complex evidence.
We believe that you are more likely to win your case and receive a fair compensation payment if you have one of our personal injury solicitors deal with the insurance company on your behalf. They will argue your case, counter any objections and try to secure evidence for you while keeping you up to date throughout.
If you are ready to start the claims process now, call us today on 0800 6524 881 to begin. Our team will review your industrial injury claim straight away and explain your options to you.