By Jo Anderson. Last updated 3rd July 2023. Welcome to our guide on claiming for an injury at work as a new employee. Being injured in a workplace accident can be a terrible experience. It can affect your health (potentially also in the long-term), your ability to work, and your self-confidence. Being injured in a workplace accident that was not your fault, and was instead caused by your employer’s negligence, could be both a violation of trust and your rights as an employee. You could be wondering, ‘I am a new employee can I make a claim?’
However, if you have only recently started working for an employer, you may be feeling confused, uncertain and apprehensive about attempting a claim. You may be worried that you do not actually have the right to try and start making a claim. You may worry that if you attempt to make a claim, you could sour the relationship between you and your employer. Or you may fear that you could be sacked or victimised by your employer for starting a claim.
Rest assured, you have a right to a safe workplace, just as every other employee does, right from day one of starting at a workplace. Subsequently, you could also have the right to seek compensation from your employer if you are injured because of their negligence.
Please read through this article for guidance about what to do about seeking compensation, and then get in touch with us if you have any further questions or you would like to know more about starting a claim through us.
To reach our team, simply send a message through our live chat, or call us on 0800 073 8801. Alternatively, make a request for someone from our team to get in touch with you.
Select A Section
- What Is A New Employee Work Accident?
- Workplace Health And Safety In Numbers
- What Are My Rights When I Start A New Job?
- What Are My Rights When I Have Worked For One Month?
- Your Rights After 26 Weeks Of Employment
- Long-Term Employee Rights In The Workplace
- Making An Accdient At Work Claim As A New Employee – Compensation Payouts
- How Do We Calculate Special Damages?
- No Win No Fee New Employee Work Accident Claims
- Start Your Claim
- Essential References
- Employee Accident Claim Statistics
The workplace can be a potentially dangerous place. Even sedentary workplaces like offices could cause potential hazards. Employers have an obligation to make sure that they have done everything reasonably possible to remove hazards from the workplace or to provide protection from these hazards to their employees. If this responsibility is not met, then someone could end up being injured in a work accident. That person could be entitled to make a work accident claim.
You might be wondering “I am a new employee can I make a claim?” Yes, under certain circumstances, you can. Even if you have only just started working for a new employer, you are still entitled to the same health and safety rights as everyone else in the workplace. You are fully entitled to make a claim for compensation if you can provide evidence to prove that you suffered an injury in a workplace accident that was caused as a result of your employer’s negligence.
The Health and Safety Executive, the UK’s national authority on workplace health and safety releases an annual report on the number of reported deaths, injuries, and days lost caused by workplace accidents. You can read some figures here if you want to see the details. Some important figures from the report include the facts that:
- 111 people were killed at work in 2019/20.
- 693,000 people sustained non-fatal injuries at work in 2019/20.
- 2,446 died as a result of mesothelioma linked to past asbestos exposure in 2018.
- 38.8 billion working days were lost as a result of workplace injuries or illnesses in 2019/20.
- 1.6 million people were recorded as suffering from a work-related illness in 2019/20.
- Workplace injuries and ill health cost an estimated £16.2 billion in 2018/19.
When you are making applications for a new job, you have certain rights that have to be respected. These include the right to:
- Not disclose details of any spent convictions to a prospective employer, apart from those in certain sectors, for example in roles where a DBS may be required.
- Not be discriminated against in the job application, interview or selection process on the basis of gender, sexuality, gender identity, race, religion, nationality, age or disability.
- Ask for reasonable adjustments to be made to the selection process to accommodate a disability.
There are some workers’ rights that you are entitled to from day one of your employment, even if you are still in training, in your probationary period or on a trial period. Other workplace rights only apply once you have been working for an employer for a certain amount of time.
Your right to the protection of your health and safety is an unconditional basic right that you are entitled to from the very beginning of your time at your place of employment. Other rights that you are entitled to from the start of your employment include the right to:
- Protection from discrimination on the basis of gender, race, disability, age, religion or any other protected characteristic.
- Not have deductions made to your payslip other than those that are lawful, such as taxes.
- Not carry out a workplace task if it is unreasonably unsafe.
- The National Minimum Wage.
Once you have been employed as a worker for a period of one month, you begin to become entitled to further rights and protections. These are besides the basic ones outlined in the above section. You become entitled to:
- Receive at least a week’s notice period before you are dismissed.
- You are entitled to medical suspension pay if you have to take time off because of certain medical issues.
- You become entitled to statutory lay-off pay if you are temporarily stood down.
Further rights are activated after you have completed your first 26 weeks (around six months) of your employment. Once you have been with an employer for 26 weeks or more you become entitled to:
- Ask for flexible working hours.
- Ask to take time off for training purposes (if your employer has more than 250 employees).
- Take statutory maternity, paternity, adoption or bereavement leave.
It could take up to a year or two years of employment before you become entitled to all of your workers’ rights. After one year, you are entitled to take unpaid parental leave. And after two years, you become fully entitled to the following rights:
- Seek an employment tribunal for unfair dismissals if you feel that you have been wrongly or unfairly dismissed.
- Unless you were dismissed for reasons of gross misconduct, you will be entitled to have your statutory notice period added to the length of your service if you were dismissed by your employer right before you reached your two-year service period.
- Claim statutory redundancy pay if you are made redundant.
- Request a written letter of explanation if you are dismissed.
If you are eligible to claim compensation for an accident at work as a new employee, and your claim is successful, your payout could include general damages and special damages.
General damages is the head of a claim that would compensate you for the pain and suffering your injury has caused you.
Solicitors and other legal professionals could get help valuing accident at work compensation payouts for general damages by looking at the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG). This publication provides guideline payout brackets for various injuries at different severities.
We have taken some figures from the 16th edition of the JCG to create the table below. However, these are only guideline figures. Compensation for an accident at work is assessed on a case-by-case basis, and the specific factors of your claim could affect how much you receive.
|Total loss of one eye
|Dependent on age, psychiatric consequences, and cosmetic effect.
|£54,830 to £65,710
|Where the level of respiratory disability/lung function impairment attributable to asbestos is 1–10%.
|£15,100 to £35,500
|Moderate, displaced metatarsal fractures, which lead to permanent deformities
|£13,740 to £24,990
|Moderate injuries to the thumb resulting in loss of function/sensation.
|£9,670 to £12,590
|Toxic fume inhalation
|Not severe enough to permanently affect lung function.
|£5,320 to £12,590
|Moderate, frozen shoulder injuries that limit movement, with persisting symptoms lasting over 2 years.
|£7,890 to £12,770
|Recovery without surgery occurs within about two to five years.
|£7,890 to £12,510
|£6,610 to £19,200
|Pain over a period of weeks only.
|Up to £3,950
Contact our advisors if you have questions about starting a personal injury claim for an accident at work. They could also provide you with a free valuation of your claim.
Special damages are the other form of compensation that you could be entitled to make a claim for following an injury. If you have suffered an injury, you may find yourself out-of-pocket due to losing some of your income or have unexpected costs. These costs and losses can include things like:
- Medical expenses
- Transport costs
- Unpaid leave or permanent or long-term loss of ability to work due to a disabling injury
- Cancelled plans (lost deposits)
When you face these kinds of expenses and losses, make sure that you are keeping hold of all of the documentation and paperwork related to them, from public transport tickets to invoices and wage slips. So long as you can provide evidence of your financial losses, you could be entitled to claim them back in special damages compensation.
You need to think carefully about how you will be able to afford to make a compensation claim. Making a claim by hiring a lawyer on the basis of paying legal fees before starting a claim could be risky. You could end up out-of-pocket if you lose your claim. You could also feel the claim wasn’t worth it if you win, but only receive a small sum of compensation.
There are other options besides this, thankfully, when it comes to making your compensation claim.
One alternative is a No Win No Fee claim. This is a type of claim where an agreement is reached before beginning the claim between the client and solicitor. The agreement outlines a certain amount of the compensation claim that the lawyer will be entitled to take from the compensation sum, if any is awarded, as their success fee. This amount is legally capped and is, of course, conditional on winning the case.
It may be a safer option for those who are concerned about being out-of-pocket in the event of a failed claim. That’s because it ensures that you don’t have to pay solicitor fees if it is unsuccessful.
If you would like to read any further information about how the solicitors that we work with could help you to make an accident at work claim for an injury that you have suffered after you recently started working for an employer by making a No WIn No Fee claim, then you can read the guide on this page.
If you would like to start a claim or make enquiries for more information about some of the things that you have read here, you contact our team by doing any of the following:
- Calling 0800 073 8801.
- Requesting a call back from our team about making a claim.
- Sending a message to our legal advice team using the chat feature that pops up at the bottom of your screen.
Here are some more references on accident at work claims:
- Head here to learn more about making an accident at work claim
- Click here to see more questions and answers with our accident at work FAQs
- What is the accident at work claim time limit?
- What steps should I take when injured at work?
- What should I do if I injure myself at work?
- Will suing my employer create problems?
- Can you make an accident at work claim if not employed by the company?
- Do I have to be an employee to claim for a workplace injury?
- How to make a defective work equipment claim
- Can you claim unfair dismissal if sacked after a workplace accident?
- Can you claim for an injury during your probation period?
Thank you for reading our guide where we answer the question, ‘I am a new employee can I make a claim?’
Guide by JY
Edited by RV