If you believe negligence played a part in a lifting injury you sustained at work then you may have a lifting injury claim for compensation.
Common Lifting Injury Claims
Most lifting injury claims tend to revolve around the back, neck and shoulder areas. However, the lifting of heavy items can place strain on other areas of the body that can lead to long-term damage. Some of the more common injuries seen in lifting injury claims include:
- Straining and spraining of muscles and tendons;
- Neck muscle strains;
- Back disc problems.
The vast majority of lifting injuries are relatively minor but more serious injuries and general long-term wear and tear can prove to be extremely painful. Whether your lifting injury is minor or severe, if the injury was caused by negligence you should consider contacting a personal injury solicitor for advice on claiming compensation.
Lifting Injuries At Work
While the experts can make lifting heavy items at work look relatively easy there are still many dangers for employers to consider.
Unfortunately, many people automatically assume that musculoskeletal damage such as back injuries is simply part and parcel of lifting heavy equipment as part of your employment. In reality, one off injuries and general wear and tear from lifting items over a prolonged period of time should not be seen as an acceptable side of employment. Under their legal duty of care all employers should:
- Provide initial and ongoing training regarding health and safety;
- Make use of appropriate lifting machinery when moving heavy equipment;
- Carry out regular risk assessments to see if the safety and well-being of employees can be improved;
- Where applicable provide specific training in techniques used to lift and control heavy equipment when being moved;
- Opt for the lowest level of risk which is reasonably practical when moving heavy equipment;
- Provide the necessary safety clothing;
- Ensure that the appropriate level of staffing is available when lifting heavy items.
While there is a legal duty of care ensuring that employers respect the safety and well-being of their employees, employees also need to take due care and abide by safety procedures. On occasion there will be situations where for example a back injury at work is received from lifting heavy equipment but if the employer has done as much as reasonably possible to fulfil their duty of care, it may be difficult to obtain a negligence ruling. As negligence needs to be proven in order to pursue a lifting injury claim this is a critical part of the overall procedure.
Compensation For Lifting Injuries
Most injuries we see in lifting injury claims are to the back and therefore we have listed the recommended average compensation amounts for back injuries. However, as there are so many injuries that can be caused by lifting various items you can also use our compensation calculator.
Back Injuries Compensation Amounts
- Relatively minor back injuries might include strains, sprains, disc pain and soft tissue injuries but if they are likely to recover fully within three months then compensation up to £2,090 could be awarded.
- Where similar injuries require no surgery but the after-effects could still be felt up to 2 years after the accident, compensation of between £2,090 and £6,730 could be available.
- A relatively minor back injury which can take between two and five years to fully recover without the need for surgery will attract compensation of between £6,730 and £10,670.
- Moderate back injuries such as ligament, muscle and disc damage can attract compensation from £10,670 up to £23,680 depend upon the severity of the injuries, longevity and impact on everyday life.
- Moderate injuries which take in compression/crush fractures and may lead to osteoarthritis and long-term discomfort, together with a necessity for surgery, can attract compensation from £23,680 up to £33,080.
- Severe back injuries which involve disc fractures and lesions leading to surgery and issues such as personality change, unemployment, depression, impaired mobility and reduced sexual activity will attract compensation anywhere from £33,080 up to £59,490.
- Back injuries resulting in nerve root damage, loss of sensation, reduced mobility as well as an impact on sexual function, bowel control and creating long-term scarring will generally attract compensation from £63,280 up to £75,440.
- Severe back injuries resulting in nerve damage, spinal-cord issues, long-term pain and suffering with disability issues as well as reduced bladder control, bowel problems and reduced sexual function could lead to compensation of between £77,700 and £137,330.
Filing A Lifting Injury Claim
To file a successful lifting injury claim for compensation you have to prove negligence was the cause of the injury which in many cases is a dereliction of duty from an employer towards their employees. With any lifting injury it is important to get medical attention promptly. Receiving medical attention will mean that the appropriate treatment is received and your medical records can also be used as evidence if pursuing compensation through the courts.
You may also require supporting evidence such as photographs of what you have been lifting or was trying to lift, location of the accident, injuries received if visible and a copy of the company’s accident book if you were lifting at work showing similar injuries would prove useful. If possible, witness statements can also add significant strength to a lifting injury claim.
Contacting a personal injury solicitor about your lifting injury will enable them to review any evidence you currently have and discuss what exactly happened. Usually this can all be discussed in a phone consultation which many solicitors provide free of charge. This is essentially so that if they decide in their expert opinion you should file a claim for compensation they can then offer their services, most likely on a No Win No Fee basis. If you were to claim with us for example you would only be charged when the claim is settled in your favour and the amount you pay would be a percentage of the awarded compensation. The percentage taken from the compensation would be agreed upon before your claim is started. If for any reason your lifting injury claim is not successful you pay nothing, however whoever you claim with you should always ask them to explain their charges with you fully as they may differ.