Ladders are used in many workplaces to make it easier to carry out work at height. However, even though laws exist to try and keep workplaces as safe as possible, falls from ladders at work still happen fairly regularly. Importantly, if you fell off a ladder at work because your employer was negligent in some way, you could be compensated for your injuries.
We’re here to help if you’ve fallen from a ladder and would like to discuss your options. When you call, one of our trained advisors will review your claim with you and provide free legal advice. If your claim appears to be viable, they’ll refer you to one of our personal injury solicitors. Should they take you on as a client, your ladder accident claim will be managed on a No Win No Fee basis. That means you won’t need to pay any legal fees at all unless compensation is awarded to you.
Please contact us today on 0800 6524 881 if you’d like a free case review. Alternatively, please read on to find out more.
Table of contents
- Am I Eligible To Claim Compensation For Falling Off A Ladder At Work?
- What Laws Apply To Using Ladders At Work?
- Common Causes Of Ladder Fall Accidents At Work
- Common Injuries Sustained From Falling Off A Ladder
- How Much Compensation For Falling Off A Ladder At Work Could I Claim?
- Evidence To Support A Ladder Accident Claim
- Time Limits For Claiming Compensation
- Starting The Ladder Accident Claims Process
If you fell off a ladder at work and were injured as a result you may be entitled to compensation if:
- Your employer and/or work colleague breached their duty of care towards your safety through an act of negligence; and
- You fell off a ladder at work as a result; and
- You sustained injuries during the fall.
To help prove how you were injured and why your employer or your colleague was at fault for your falling off the ladder, you’ll need evidence. Therefore, we’ll look at the types of information that could be used to support your claim later on.
Your employer’s duty of care towards your well-being in the workplace comes from various pieces of legislation. They are:
- The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974
Here the employer has to take reasonable steps to try and keep you as safe as possible. They should therefore carry out regular risk assessments, remove as many dangers as possible and train you properly.
- The Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 (PUWER)
A ladder provided by an employer is considered to be work equipment. As a result, it must meet the requirements of PUWER. Therefore it needs to be fit for purpose and the conditions it will be used in, safe and properly maintained and inspected where necessary by a competent person.
- The Work at Height Regulations 2005
Again, this law requires employers to conduct risk assessments where working at height might be required. However, section 6 of the law states that employers should try to find alternatives to working at height where possible, try to prevent falls from height occurring and minimise the consequences and height of any potential fall.
Of course, you will also have a duty of care to try and avoid a workplace accident. That means you must follow any safety training that’s been offered, listen to the advice of a supervisor and consider others when working up a ladder.
You needn’t be too concerned about which law applies in your case, as this will be checked for free if you call for a no-obligation consultation.
Legally, a ladder does not always have to be held by another person such as a workmate. However, it is one of the ladder safety options that could be used to meet the conditions set out by the Working at Height Regulations. According to schedule 6 (requirements for ladders), ladders must be prevented from slipping by 1) securing the ladder at its top and bottom ends, 2) using a stability anti-slip device or 3) anything else that is equally effective i.e. having somebody hold the ladder.
If your employer has taken all reasonable steps to protect you from falls from height while using a ladder, you may not be able to claim compensation. However, if your employer’s negligence caused you to fall off a ladder at work, you might be eligible to seek damages. Some examples of negligence leading to ladder fall injuries include:
- Being provided with a faulty or damaged ladder.
- A lack of proper safety training.
- Being asked to work up a ladder in adverse weather conditions (rain, wind etc).
- Inadequate PPE such as hard hats or safety harnesses.
- Being asked to work excessive hours (i.e. your fall was caused by tiredness).
- Being asked to use a ladder when scaffolding should’ve been used instead.
If you suspect that your employer’s actions (or lack of action) caused you to fall from a ladder, please let us know and we’ll explain your options.
As you’d imagine, the severity of injury caused by falling from a ladder will (in most cases) be affected by the height of the fall. In theory, any injury could be claimed for if the accident was caused by the employer’s negligence. The most common ladder fall injuries include:
- Head injuries (including concussions and minor brain injuries).
- Soft tissue injuries affecting the ligaments, tendons and muscles.
- Broken or fractured bones.
- Cuts, bruises and lacerations.
- Spinal injuries (in severe cases, this could include paralysis).
- Arm injuries.
Additionally, a fall from a height can be quite traumatic and lead to anxiety and distress. In more serious falls, the injured party could develop Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Any psychological injuries could also be considered when making a ladder fall accident claim.
There isn’t a set amount of compensation you’d get for falling off a ladder at work if you were to successfully sue your employer. This is simply because each ladder fall accident is unique in what injuries have been caused and how the victim has been affected. However, a settlement could potentially cover:
- The pain and suffering caused by your ladder fall injuries and treatment.
- Any mental health injuries caused by the fall.
- Any negative impact your injuries have on your social life and hobbies.
- Lost income. Future loss of earnings may also be considered if there’s a long-term impact on your ability to work.
- The cost of a professional carer or the time a friend or family member spent supporting you while you recovered.
- Medical expenses including private hospital treatment or physiotherapy.
- Travel costs linked to your claim or treatment.
- Home or vehicle modifications to help you deal with any ongoing disability caused by the fall.
If one of our workplace accident solicitors handles your claim, they’ll do all they can to secure the maximum level of compensation to cover your suffering.
Realistically, we can’t provide an estimation of a payout until your injuries have been assessed by an independent medical expert as part of the claims process. However, our compensation calculator shows you the potential compensation ranges for several different common injuries from falling off of a ladder:
If you’ve been injured from a ladder at work and you believe your employer was in some way to blame, please call our advice centre to find out if you could make a claim.
As mentioned earlier, evidence will be needed to prove why you fell from a ladder, why you consider your employer was to blame, and how you’ve suffered as a result. Your solicitor will try to secure as much supporting evidence as possible to try and secure compensation for your ladder fall injuries. This could include:
- Details of anybody else who saw your accident as witness statements can help to prove liability.
- Photographs of the ladder or the accident scene to help prove why the accident happened.
- A copy of your accident report form. Legally, employers must record ladder falls and other workplace accidents and you’re entitled to a copy of the form.
- X-rays and medical records following treatment at a hospital or minor injuries unit.
- Security camera footage if your accident was caught on a CCTV camera.
- Evidence of any associated costs. Receipts, wage slips and bank statements could all help here.
As you may be aware, a 3-year time limit applies to accident at work claims. For ladder accidents, this will usually start on the date you fell off a ladder at work and were injured. Some of the benefits of starting the claims process sooner rather than later include:
- Evidence to support the claim should be easier to collect.
- You’ll receive compensation sooner if your claim is successful.
- You could receive an interim payment to cover immediate financial costs before your claim is finalised (lost income, medical costs etc).
If you’d like to confirm how long you have left to make a ladder fall accident claim, please get in touch.
One call to our advice centre could be all it takes to start the ladder accident claims process. If you call us on 0800 6524 881, a specialist will review your options and assess your claim for free.
If the claim is strong enough and accepted by one of our solicitors, they’ll work on a No Win No Fee basis. Knowing that you’ll only pay legal fees if the claim is won usually makes everything a little less stressful.
Please feel free to ask any further questions about suing an employer if you fell off a ladder at work by calling or connecting to our live chat service.