Work Accidents

Common hazards at work

Manhandling heavy goods can cause strains, sprains and slipped discs. In industries where shifting heavy items is part of the work, employers usually train workers how to lift properly and how to protect themselves from injury. Items too heavy for a person to lift should be marked with some kind of label or warning sticker.

Sitting too long at a work station and using unsuitable chairs can damage your spine. Your employer should provide a proper ergonomic chair, designed to support the body properly for that kind of work. Other hazards of sitting too long at a computer screen include eye-strain, and repetitive strain injury (RSI) from too much keyboard work. The tendons become strained, usually in the wrist.

A moving plant or vehicle can cause serious injury to the unwary warehouse operative. This is one of the commonest accidents in warehousing, the farming industry and on construction sites. If a handbrake has not been applied, or the fork-lift driver reverses too fast without checking what’s going on behind him, anyone who is in the way can be badly injured. It can be as severe as a pedestrian being hit by a car.

Broken limbs can result when a person falls over because a surface is dangerous or slippery. You might think people should be more careful, and mostly they are, but this kind of injury tends to happen when the victim is struggling to do something else, such as moving goods around, and they don’t see the hazard on the floor before them. Wet marble is as slippery as sheet ice, and even if warning boards are placed, the scene is still potentially dangerous.

What types of work accidents can I claim for?

An employee is entitled to claim compensation for any injury caused by an accident at work that resulted from negligence or deliberate action by a third party, in other words, if the accident was someone else’s fault. By definition, work accidents must have occurred at the place of work. Travel to and from work doesn’t count, but if you are travelling on behalf of your employer, then it may do and your solicitor will be able to advise.

How do I make a claim?

In order for claims for work accidents to be successful, the claimant must be able to prove the liability. All employers are required under British Law to hold an Employers’ Liability insurance policy, and the liability for your accident would be met under this policy.

What do I need to prove my case?

  • Record the time, date and place of the incident and be able to show it was reported to the company and recorded in their accident book. Most firms have a nominated Safety Officer and you should report your accident to this person immediately.
  • The medical report on your injuries resulting from the accident, together with interim reports for continuing treatment you may be having.
  • The details of any witnesses, if there were any.
  • Any notes, photographs and other details you or a colleague had recorded at the time.
  • Further evidence, such as preceding reports or complaints of faulty or inadequate equipment or “accidents waiting to happen”, that the company may have failed to act on.

Road Accidents

What injuries from road accidents can I claim for?

Any driver, passenger or pedestrian can claim compensation for injuries they received in a road traffic accident provided that:

  • The accident was not the victim’s fault.
  • The victim received medical treatment as a result of the injuries.
  • The claim is started within three years of the date of the accident.

My injuries didn’t show up until a few days after the accident

This is often the case with whiplash and concussion, which are the commonest injuries resulting from road accidents. There can be a delayed reaction. Whiplash can be difficult to diagnose and concussion may sometimes have unforeseen complications. This is why it is important to see your GP after an accident in car, even if you think you walked away unscathed. It may be that you need continuing treatment. It may be you are signed off work for a few days or longer. Unfortunately, what seemed like a simple accident turns into an on-going saga for some people, and as their injuries persist, they suffer loss of income and added expenses from getting private treatment, domestic support and in some cases childcare costs. Your initial medical report is important in recording the start of your problems.

What other information do I need?

Every driver in the UK is required to have valid motor insurance. The insurance company of the driver who was at fault meets the costs of the personal injury claims and the replacement or repair of vehicles.

If you were a driver in a road accident you should:

  • Exchange details with the other drivers involved
  • Inform your own insurance company as soon as possible
  • Obtain a copy of the police report (if applicable). Accidents in which people were injured must by law be reported to the police.
  • Take your own notes and take photos at the scene
  • Ask any witnesses if they would be prepared to give a statement and take their contact details.
  • This information is what your claims solicitor needs to prepare your case.

How do I start my claim?

Claim4 make it easy for you to claim. We specialise in road accidents and can guide you through the process. Go to our compensation calculator (at the top of the page) and see how much compensation you could get. Most cases are settled quickly and out of court, and the majority of claimants do it all online. So get started now and put in your claim for the compensation you need and deserve to get back on track.

Other Accidents

Personal injury compensation claims: who claims for what?

Claim4 specialises in claims expertise for work accidents, road accidents, clinical negligence and other accidents, so what exactly is covered by “other accidents”? Under British law, any individual injured in an accident that was not their fault, that is to say, the accident was some-one else’s fault, can put in a claim for compensation. So any other accidents which are not say, road accidents or work accidents, can be the subject of a claim.

Slips, trips and falls

These accidents are very common and unfortunately, gravity is harsh. It’s so easy slip on a wet floor or trip over a broken kerbstone. Loose paving stones are lethal because if they wobble and shift, a person doesn’t always see the raised edge, trips on it and goes flying. The most usual injury from this kind of fall is a sprained or broken wrist, because instinct makes us put out our hands to break the fall, but actually this is not a good thing to do. Harder falls can result in broken collar bones and broken arms. A fall from a horse or a bike can cause whiplash. The older a person is, the more severe can be the resulting injuries, but whatever your age, a broken wrist can keep you off work for a while and be very inconvenient.

Who is liable for my fall?

The claimant needs to establish whoever is responsible for maintaining the site or location where the accident took place. Examples include:

  • A public building, such as a library, school or sports centre for which a local authority or other legal body is responsible.
  • Public places, town centres, pavements and streets which are in most cases the responsibility of the local authority
  • Rented domestic or business accommodation for which the landlord is responsible for certain safety features in the property.
  • The owners of a private property, building, shopping mall or supermarket, which is used like a public space but privately owned.

More examples of other accidents

  • Slips, trips and falls in a marina or boating yard, such as falling between the static jetty and the moving boat when trying to board or leave.
  • Getting a severe electric shock from a faulty product you just purchased, or being burned or injured from substandard, cheap imported fireworks.
  • Tripping over a carelessly laid cable in the office, workshop or at a public event such as a music festival or agricultural show.
  • These are only examples. We all have to take care to avoid unnecessary accidents. Did you know the most dangerous thing in your home is your staircase?

Start your claim

Claim4 specialises in all kinds of accidents and can tell you whether your claim is valid. Our compensation calculator can tell you how much compensation you might get. The majority of claimants do it all online and if at all possible, we’ll keep you out of court. If your claim is accepted, the offer letter will come through and if it’s all okay you could soon have that compensation payment in your hand.

Clinical Negligence

Facts about clinical negligence

Nobody likes cases of clinical negligence. After all, medical staff are motivated by a desire to heal not harm, but sadly, however much care everybody takes, sometimes things go wrong. The human body is infinitely complex, and despite the marvellous medical advances of the last two centuries, we still don’t fully understand all the interactions between treatments and patients, and because each person is unique, a standard treatment can sometimes differ between one patient and another.

Why are clinical medical cases different to other accident claims?

Fundamentally a claim for compensation for injuries from clinical negligence must meet the same conditions as any other:

  • The injuries must result from the actions or negligence of a third party
  • The injured person must have had medical treatment, or further treatment as a result of the injuries or complications arising from the incident in question
  • The claim must be made within three years of the complaint.

The main difference is in the emphasis. In serious cases of clinical negligence, where the consequences are life-changing, life-threatening or even fatal, the court will spend more time looking at future needs, to make sure the compensation award covers those.

Clinical negligence cases can include:

  • Malpractice and misconduct, or when treatments go wrong
  • Failure or delay to diagnose or treat a condition
  • Treatment given to the patient without consent
  • Injury from dental procedures
  • Injury resulting from defective implants or substandard drugs or medication.
  • These mishaps can happen in both NHS and privately funded hospitals.

In some cases, the claimant may not be the injured person, but could be parents claiming on behalf of a minor, or on behalf of a patient too badly incapacitated to act for himself or herself, or for elderly relatives. In some cases, a family or relatives will claim for damages as a result of a fatality from clinical negligence.

How do I start a claim for medical negligence?

Probably quite detailed medical assessments will be required, and these have to be made by practitioners who are independent of both claimant and defendant and their associates. Before reaching that stage however, an initial assessment has to be made to confirm:

  • The claim qualifies
  • The amount to be claimed

You can get those answers here online at claim4. Just take the eligibility checker test and then run through the compensation calculator to get an estimate of what amount you might be claiming for. If you decide to start your claim, you may need more specific advice about your own case from a legal expert.