Manual handling injury claims occur in almost every workplace in some form or the other. The exact nature of manual handling activities that bring about a claim for compensation may vary considerably from one workplace to another, but they typically include injuries from lifting, pushing, carrying, lowering, or raising items. All of these actions could potentially put workers involved at risk for several different types of injuries depending on the size and weight of the item as well as the worker’s physical condition.
If your manual handling injury/ injuries are caused due to your employer’s negligence, the employer would be liable to compensate you for your injuries. Unfortunately, not all employers inform their employees about this legal requirement, neither do they make it easy for their workers to get manual handling injury compensation that would be due to them. The ideal way for you to get your due compensation is by having an experienced personal injury solicitor to represent you and file a case for manual handling accident compensation.
Here are some points to consider when filing a workplace manual handling injury claim.
Common Workplace Manual Handling Injury Claims
Sprains and strains are the most common injuries resulting in compensation claims because of incorrect or negligent workplace manual handling practices. These are not the only injuries however.
Other manual handling injuries may include but are not limited to:
- Back and neck injuries;
- Muscular injuries to the upper limbs;
- Muscular injuries to the lower limbs;
- Aggravation of existing medical conditions;
- Breaks and fractures;
- Internal injuries.
Although workers may sustain manual handling injuries in any working environment, some workplaces pose a higher risk because of the various dynamics within that industry. Workers employed in factories, construction/ building sites, warehouses, hospitals, and farms are at highest risk for sustaining manual handling injuries.
Employers’ Obligations In The Workplace
The Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992 is very clear about what an employer’s obligations are in the workplace. The Regulations state that where manual handling is unavoidable, employers must conduct an exhaustive risk assessment in order to identify all potential risks that could result from different activities. Once the risks are identified, employers are legally required to take appropriate steps to minimise those risks.
The Regulations further state that this risk assessment should not be limited to injuries resulting from moving or lifting materials at work. The risk assessment must be all-encompassing and include all risks that could possibly arise from any manual handling activity.
Individual traits of the employees performing any manual handling activities must also be taken into consideration when conducting risk assessments in the workplace. Employers must consider these factors:
- The strength and capability of the individual worker;
- The frequency with which the worker needs to undertake any manual handling activity;
- The size and weight of the items to be moved;
- The distance that any item is to be moved;
- Any rest or break that the worker can avail of.
If manual handling cannot be entirely eliminated, after conducting the risk assessment, employers must take all possible precautionary measures to reduce the risk of injury to workers. As an example for preventing back injury from lifting at work these measures would include providing adequate lifting equipment as well as extensive training in the right way to lift and hoist heavy items.
If your employer fails to provide you with the proper equipment and training and if you sustain any manual handling injury at work, the employer may be liable to compensate you for your injuries.
How Much Compensation For A Manual Handling Injury?
The court does not award a set amount of compensation amount for all manual handling accident claims. The exact amount that you will be awarded will depend on the type and severity of your injuries, your medical expenses and the losses you may have incurred from being forced to take leave from work.
In general, for manual handling injuries, courts award compensation for the following:
- General damages, which is meant to compensate you for the pain and the suffering resulting from the injury.
- All medical expenses, including diagnostic tests, surgical and non-surgical treatment, hospital fees and long term rehabilitation treatment.
- Reimbursement of travel expenses associated with the medical treatment.
- Any costs from making necessary structural changes to your home and vehicle to accommodate your injuries.
- Loss of salary.
- Loss of monetary and non-monetary bonuses from taking extended leave from work.
Starting A Manual Handling Accident Injury Claim
All companies in the UK are legally required to have valid Employer’s Liability insurance in the event that an employee is injured in an accident at work. This means that when you file a compensation claim for a manual handling injury, your employer’s insurance company will handle the legal aspects of the claim.
These insurance companies have highly experienced lawyers who know every aspect of personal injury law and will not hesitate to use their extensive legal knowledge to invalidate your claim. The best chance of winning against them is if you are equally knowledgeable about personal injury law. If you aren’t, your best option is to contact an established accident at work solicitor to file your claim for you and represent you in court.
Advantages Of Accident At Work Solicitors
Having an experienced accident at work personal injury solicitor at your side gives you the best chance of winning your manual handling injury claim. Ours have vast experience with handling such claims and will use that experience to help you win your claim.
Our established in-house personal injury solicitors will take this one step further by helping you file your claim on the basis of a No Win No Fee agreement. This agreement can come as a huge relief to anyone who does not have the money to pay the legal fees upfront. According to the terms of our agreement, the claimant does not have to pay any money at any stage of the claim. The claimant will not have to pay a penny if your manual handling claim is unsuccessful. Claimants only pay if our accident at work solicitor assigned to your case wins you compensation. The fee you’ll need to pay will be an agreed set percentage of the compensation awarded to you by the court only once the manual handling injury claim is won.