What Should You Do If You Suffer An Injury In A Workplace Accident?

This is our guide on workplace injury claims. A workplace accident can lead to a variety of injuries and illnesses. If they were caused by the negligence of someone who owed you a duty of care, then you could be owed compensation as a result.

workplace injury

Workplace injury claims guide

All employers have a duty of care to their employees, and this is something that will be elaborated upon later in this article. Additionally, we’ll be exploring some common examples of what could constitute workplace injuries and some forms of evidence that can prove useful in supporting your claim.

If you’re unsure as to whether or not you could claim compensation for your workplace accident, get in touch today. Our advisors can help determine whether you have a valid claim. We could connect you with a workplace accident lawyer from our panel if we think you have a valid claim.

Read on for more information, or get in touch using the details below.

  • Call us on the number at the top of the page
  • Talk to us about your claim online
  • Use the pop-up chat window in the bottom-right corner of this screen 

Select A Section:

  1. What Is A Workplace Injury?
  2. The Criteria To Make A Workplace Accident Claim
  3. What Are The Most Common Examples Of A Workplace Injury?
  4. Which Evidence Will Support A Workplace Accident Claim?
  5. Calculating Compensation For Workplace Injury Claims
  6. No Win No Fee Agreements For Workplace Accidents 

What Is A Workplace Injury?

If you’re injured in the workplace, this could result in a wide range of different types of injuries. Some accidents resulting in injuries might be more common in certain industries. For example, falls from a height are more likely to occur in industries where employees work at a height. 

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) defines a workplace accident as a “separate, identifiable and unintended incident” which causes someone to be injured. The incident must also have occurred out of or in connection with work.

Your employer has a duty of care towards all employees, which is set out in section 2 of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974. According to this duty of care, all employers need to take all reasonably practicable steps to reduce the risk of workplace injury to their employees. We will look at what this duty of care entails further on in this guide. 

The Criteria To Make A Workplace Accident Claim

There are 3 main points that need to be true in order to be considered eligible to make a workplace injury claim. We’ve listed them below:

  • Did someone owe you a duty of care? – when you’re in the workplace, the duty of care is owed by the employer. They have a legal obligation to make sure the working environment is as safe as reasonably possible.
  • Was this duty of care breached? – in other words, were there steps that an employer would be expected to take to reduce the risk of injury that were not carried out? 
  • Was anyone injured? –  you can’t make a claim simply because a workplace accident takes place. In order to claim compensation, you need to also have been injured as a result.

Workplace Accident Claims Time Limit

The general time limit of how long you have to start a claim for a workplace accident injury is 3 years. This means you have 3 years to start your claim; this can run from the date of the accident or the date of knowledge. The date of knowledge is when you knew (or should have known) that negligence led to your injuries/ 

This 3-year time window is stated in the Limitation Act 1980. However, there can be exceptions to this time limit in some scenarios.  

For example, anyone under the age of 18 cannot make a claim themselves. Therefore, their time limit is suspended until their 18th birthday. In the meantime, an adult can make a claim for them on their behalf. This can be any adult with the child’s best interests at heart, including a parent or guardian, another relative or a family friend. They’d be known legally as a litigation friend.

A litigation friend can also claim on behalf of someone with a reduced mental capacity who is unable to do so themselves. Similar to child accident claims, their time limit is also suspended. It will only begin if their mental capacity reaches a state where they are deemed capable of making their own workplace injury claim. 

What Are The Most Common Examples Of A Workplace Injury?

As mentioned earlier in this article, all employers have a legally-binding duty of care to their employees. A breach of this duty of care can be defined by an employer not taking all reasonable steps to ensure that the workplace is kept as risk-free as possible.

Some examples of a breach of a duty of care could include:

  • Not providing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)- As part of their duty of care, your employer is obliged to provide you with PPE you need to do your role. This could include ear protectors, non-slip shoes and hard hats. Your employer can also not ask you to pay for any PPE that you only use at work and that you need to do your job safely.
  • Not providing employees with adequate training – certain tasks can be quite dangerous and the risk of workplace injury may be increased if employees are not officially trained to carry them out. To illustrate, a job may require an individual to engage in manual handling and other heavy lifting tasks. There are techniques that exist to reduce the risk of injury when carrying out these tasks. If they are not taught to the employee then they could suffer injuries to their back and other parts of the body. 
  • Poor housekeeping- This can apply to a wide range of different kinds of workplaces. If your employer doesn’t maintain good housekeeping, for instance by ensuring that wet floors are signposted and walkways are clear of obstructions, this could cause an accident that leads to injury.

What Do Statistics Say About Workplace Injuries?

There are certain types of workplace injuries that should be reported to HSE by your employer. They also collect statistics of reported workplace accidents across Great Britain. As you can see from the graph of non-fatal injuries below, some of these accidents took place more often than others. 

The accident type that was most commonly reported over 2020/21 was a slip, trip, or fall on the same level. The figure made up 33% of cases. You can see some of the other common causes in the graph below, such as a fall from a height.

Workplace accident statistics graph

Where Can Workplace Accidents Occur?

Different industries and workplaces carry with them different risks. This means that the kinds of accidents and injuries that occur might be dependent on the kind of workplace. 

For example, industries such as the construction industry will often work with heavy machinery, specialised equipment and moving objects. Things like saws, hammers, cranes, etc can all cause serious injuries in certain situations. The same could also be said for factory accidents.

Alternatively, there are some accident types that could occur in a wide range of different workplaces and industries. For example, slips, trips and falls can be caused by poor housekeeping. This could occur somewhere like a factory or a construction site, but could equally occur in an office space or restaurant,

If you’re unsure as to whether or not you could claim compensation for a workplace accident, get in touch with our advisors today. 

Which Evidence Will Support A Workplace Accident Claim?

This section addresses how to prove a personal injury claim. When claiming compensation for a workplace injury, you will need to present evidence. The more pieces of quality evidence that you can acquire in support of your claim, the better.

Some good examples of evidence you can present are:

  • Written witness statements – if others saw how you were injured, then they could corroborate your story. The same is also true if they have also experienced the same unsafe working conditions as you have. You cannot collect witness statements yourself, but you can collect contact details so that a statement can be taken later. 
  • CCTV – if you appear in CCTV footage, you have a legal right to request the footage. This step is best taken as soon as possible as footage may be deleted.
  • Photographs – visual evidence of what caused your injuries is a good thing to have. For example, pictures of a broken tile on a staircase that caused you to trip and fall. Photographs of your injuries could also be useful.
  • Medical records – these will contain information on your treatment history and things like medications that have been prescribed.

Once the claims process has begun, you will also be invited for an independent medical assessment. This way the severity of your injuries can be assessed for the purposes of your case. This can be arranged at a medical facility near to you. That way, your travel is kept to a minimum. 

The report from this assessment will be the basis on which your claim is valued. Read on for more information on what your claim could consist of, or speak with one of our advisors today for more information.

Calculating Compensation For Workplace Injury Claims

In this section, we’ll be explaining to you how workplace injury compensation is calculated. 

The part of your compensation that is awarded to you for your physical pain and mental suffering is called general damages. Legal professionals will value this part of the claim with the help of a publication called the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG).

The JCG contains a list of injuries and a range of figures alongside each entry. These monetary amounts are based on what has been awarded to past claimants with similar injuries. However, this amount is not necessarily a guarantee.

Each case is different, so each general damages figure will also be different. We’ve included some example entries from the JCG in the table below.

Teeth(f)(i) Several front teeth damaged or lost£8,200 to £10,710
Teeth(f)(iv) Damage to or loss of back teeth: per tooth£1,020 to £1,600
Jaw(e)(ii) When consequences are permanent, such as problems with eating£16,860 to £28,610
Nose(c)(ii) A displaced fracture that requires surgery but results in a full recovery £3,710 to £4,790
Toes(Q)(a) All toes amputated£34,270 to £52,620
Illness(b) From a non-traumatic injury - (iv) pain and cramps of varying degrees with diarrhoea for some weeks£860 to £3,710
Respiratory (c) Asbestos-related - Mesothelioma that causes impaired lung function and severe pain£65,710 to £118,150
Shoulder(e) Clavicle fracture£4,830 to £11,490
Post-traumatic stress disorder(B)(b) Moderately severe - whilst symptoms will have been worse, the prognosis will be better£21,730 to £56,180
Mental anguish(E) When the victim thinks their lifespan is about to be reduced, or that they may die£,4,380

Determining Special Damages For A Work Injury Claim

Special damages is the second potential head of a workplace injury claim. They can be awarded to you to reimburse you for costs that are caused by your injuries. 

For example, you may have suffered a loss of earnings due to being unable to return to work for a period of time. You’ll need evidence such as payslips to help illustrate how much this could be worth.

Should I File A Care Claim?

You may be injured to such an extent that you require additional care at home. If this is the case, the cost of this care could also be included in special damages payments. This is the case whether you need temporary care or your injuries are so severe that your needs are permanent. 

The care could be provided by a professional, but you can also claim back the cost of care from a family member. This will usually be calculated on a minimum wage basis. 

Get in touch today for more examples of what could be included in a special damages payment.

No Win No Fee Agreements For Workplace Accidents

Get in touch today to see if you could make a No Win No Fee claim. This means that you wouldn’t have to pay your solicitor if your claim fails. If it is successful, then your lawyer is paid via a small percentage of the settlement you receive.

All of the lawyers on our panel work in this way, so the financial risk to you is reduced. 

Call Our Team To Make A Workplace Accident Claim

Remember, there is more than one way to reach us, and no obligation to make a claim after you’ve been in touch.

  • Call us on the number at the top of the page
  • Talk to us about your claim online
  • Use the pop-up chat window in the corner  

More Resources About Workplace Injury Claims

Here are some links to additional information.

  1. Find out how to request CCTV footage of yourself.
  2. A litigation friend may be able to claim on your behalf.
  3. Broken bones – NHS advice.

We also have a bunch of guides on accident at work claims which you can read below:

Thank you for reading our guide on workplace injury claims.

Written by Fer

Edited by Dan