Workplace Accidents, Knowing Your Own Rights When You’re Injured, or You’re Ill In Your Workplace
Lasted Edited By Michael on the 15th of January 2021. If an accident at work that wasn’t your fault has caused you harm, naturally, you may question whether you can make a compensation claim. Often, accidents that occur in the workplace are due to the working conditions and/or the working practices that are in place. All employers have a legal responsibility to provide a safe and healthy working environment. However, if your employer has not managed to do this and has caused you harm, then you could have grounds to launch a personal injury claim to get the compensation you deserve.
Here at Accident Claims UK, we have helped numerous people get the compensation they deserve for all kinds of accident claims, including workplace accidents. We have the experience and the know-how to give you the best advice. As a result, we can connect you to the best solicitor to handle your case. Naturally, one of the first things you need to do when starting a potential claim is discovering your rights. However, this is only one step that needs to be taken to launch a successful accident claim. You will also need to seek medical attention and gather as much evidence as possible to build a strong case. With that in mind, read on to discover all the facts you need to know regarding your own rights as a worker if you have been injured, including accident at work employers responsibilities and average payout amounts.
If you still have any queries about your rights and the accident at work procedure by the time you finish reading this guide, please do not hesitate to contact us. You will find our contact information towards the end.
Select a section
- UK Workplace Accident And Injury Statistics
- What Are My Rights Following An Accident At Work?
- Your Rights Following A Workplace Accident
- Employees Rights
- Can I Claim Industrial Injuries Benefits?
- Agency Worker Rights
- Do You Get Paid If I Have Been Injured At Work?
- Will I Be Dismissed For Claiming?
- What Happens If I Am Fired After My Injury?
- Different Damages You Can Claim For
- How Much Compensation Am I Going To Get For My Accident Claim
- The Steps To Take After Your Workplace Accident
- Claiming Using The No Win No Fee Approach
- The Best Legal Firm For The Job
- Start Your Claim
- Useful Links
Throughout the duration of our guide, we aim to provide you with insightful information regarding accidents at work. One way we can enlighten our readers is by providing the most up-to-date accident at work statistics. Below, you will find a plethora of information regarding workplace accidents. However, should you have any additional questions, please give our team a call.
Between 2019/20, it was reported by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) that there were 693,000 workers that sustained a non-fatal injury at their place of work, It was also outlined that there were 65, 427 non-fatal accidents that were reported by employers.
- 29% of accidents in the workplace were caused by slips, trips or falls on the same level.
- 19% of accidents in the workplace were caused by handling or lifting heavy items.
- 11% of accidents in the workplace were a result of being struck by a moving item.
- 9% of accidents in the workplace were caused by acts of violence.
- 8% of accidents in the workplace were caused by falls from heights.
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) expanded upon these points, outlining key figures for Great Britain (2019/20). In return, the documented that there were:
- 1.6 million employees who suffered from a work-related illness.
- 111 workers were fatally injured at their place of work.
- 38.8 million working days were ultimately lost due to a workplace injury or work-related illness.
- And finally, an estimated £16.billion in costs where the result of workplace injuries or ill health due to lacklustre working conditions.
Throughout the remainder of this guide, we are going to take a look at how an accident at work could be caused by negligence, whether you could make a claim, and how a personal injury solicitor could be of assistance. However, should you have any additional questions, please contact us by calling the number at the top of the page.
When determining your rights, you can use the Health and Safety Executive website for a great source of information, in addition to the NI direct government website if you are based in Northern Ireland.
Let’s start with Northern Ireland. The Health and Safety at Work Order 1978 is the crucial piece of legislation that is in place in Northern Ireland to cover health and safety-related to the workplace. It has set out what is expected of your employer in terms of protecting your safety and health while at work. There are also specific regulations to cover certain types of work, for example, gas safety, construction work, chemicals, and asbestos.
The main piece of legislation that is in place in the UK regarding safety and health at workplaces is the Health and Safety at Work etc .Act 1974. However, similarly to Northern Ireland, there are also separate pieces of legislation in place for different industries, including hospitality, agriculture, waste, quarries, health and social care, and, of course, construction.
If you have had an accident at work, you may question “what are my rights?“. We previously outlined the legislation that has been set in place to protect workers when it comes to their health and safety, but what do these pieces of legislation mean in terms of your rights and your ability to claim? To understand this, you need to know what duty to care means and, therefore, what employers need to do to make the workplace safe. If your employer hasn’t taken the necessary steps, and you’ve been injured as a consequence, then you could have valid grounds to make a claim for the damages they have caused.
In terms of duty to care, your employer needs to do the following:
- Inhibit any risks to your health
- Make the workplace safe.
- Ensure that the correct warning signs are provided and looked after
- Provide protective clothing or equipment
- Provide health supervision when needed
- Avoid potentially dangerous work when possible.
- Take precautions against the risks caused by radiation, electrical equipment, explosive hazards, and flammable hazards.
- Control and prevent exposure to substances that can damage health
- Please ensure the correct working equipment has been provided and used correctly and maintained frequently.
- Ensure that rest facility, washing facilities, toilets, lighting, temperature, and ventilation meet health safety and welfare requirements.
- Set up emergency plans
- Tell you about any potential hazards relating to the work you carry out.
- Provide adequate first aid facilities
- Make sure all materials are used, stored and handled safely.
- Make sure safe working practices are set up and followed.
- Make sure that plant and machinery is safe to use
Aside from this, your employer needs to take steps to make sure that your work environment is a safe one. This includes the following:
- Making sure that any employees who work off-site or on their own can do so safely and healthily
- Allowing employees to take appropriate rest breaks and the correct holiday entitlement
- Setting aside areas for rest breaks and to eat meals, including suitable facilities for nursing mothers and pregnant women.
- Provide somewhere for employees to get changed if required
- Provide suitable wash facilities and clean drinking water
- Fit gates, doors, and windows that open and have safety devices if needed
- Store things so that they are not likely to fall and cause injury
- Protect from risks of falling into hazardous substances or falling from a height
- Make roadways, stairs, walkways, and floors safe to use
- Keep equipment in good working order.
- Provide a workstation to suit the work being carried out and the employees
- Ensure that area is big enough to allow easy movement
- Keep the equipment and the workplace itself clean.
- Light premises so that employees can move about and work safely
- Keep temperatures at a comfortable level.
- Make sure the workspace is properly ventilated.
As you can see, employers need to cover all areas to make sure that the workplace is healthy and safe for all members of staff. All workplaces are different and have their unique requirements, which is why a risk assessment needs to be carried out. This will help the employer determine the risks and hazards to the workplace they need to tackle.
Once they have carried out risk assessments, they need to ensure that all workers are aware of the risks, and they need to put provisions in place to minimise these risks. If they have failed to do so and you have been injured in the workplace as a consequence, you will be able to claim the compensation.
If you have been the victim of a workplace accident, you are required to inform your employer of what has happened as soon as possible. This is of paramount importance because all employers must have an accident report book by law. In this accident report log, they need to record all accidents, injuries, and illnesses within the workplace. Not only is this a legal requirement, but it can help you when claiming because it serves as official documentation of what’s happened.
When you write down the details and give them to your employer to record in the book, make sure to make another copy for yourself. If you are too unwell or badly injured to carry out this task, you could ask someone that you know and love to do it for you, as it is a pivotal part of the process that cannot be skipped.
If you have suffered a disability or became ill because of a disease or accident that has occurred at work or on an approved employment training courses scheme, you may be entitled to Injuries Disablement Benefit. The amount of money that could be awarded will heavily depend on your level of disability. A medical adviser will assess your disability and rank it on a scale from 1 to 100 per cent, which will influence how much you will get. You can click here to be taken to the Accident at Work Gov UK website where you will see the various benefit amounts.
To be eligible for this benefit, if you have been involved in an accident, the accident or event must have happened in England, Wales or Scotland. You must have either been on an approved employment training course, or you must have been employed when the accident occurred. There are also more than 70 diseases that are included with the IIDB. Examples include;
- Osteoarthritis of the knee in coal miners
- Chronic bronchitis.
You might be concerned that you cannot make a personal injury claim if you were an agency worker at the time of your accident. There is nothing to worry about, as you have the same rights to pursue a claim for compensation against your employer as contracted and full-time employees do. All workers are protected by the same health and safety laws irrespective of the type of contract they are operating under.
After an accident at work, do I get paid? Often, when someone has been injured in the workplace, they need to take time off work to recover from their injuries. Depending on your work’s nature and the contract you have with your boss, you may be entitled to sick pay or you may not. So, how does sick pay work?
Firstly, you may be entitled to Statutory Sick Pay. At present, this is set to £92.05 in the UK and is paid by your employer for up to 28 weeks. You need to find out if you are eligible for Statutory Sick Pay and find out more about this at the government website. Your employer then may decide to top up this with additional sickness payments or benefits. People often call us to ask: “Am I entitled to full pay if I am injured at work?” You really do need to refer to your work contract for this.
Another way to ensure that you get paid while you are at work is to claim loss of income when you launch your personal injury case. There is a calculator on this Citizens Advice Bureau website which can help you determine what sick pay you may be entitled to.
Many people are worried about making an accident claim against their employer because as they fear that they will lose their job as a consequence. As the law states, your employer cannot dismiss you if you make a claim for an accident that happened in the workplace.
If you have been employed for more than two years at your place of work, and your employer fires you after you have made a compensation case, you will then have grounds for unfair dismissal. So what does this mean? Your employer would land themselves in further trouble, as this breaches the measures sited within the law.
You may be worried about claiming because you fear that the financial implications could ruin the business you work for. Again, you do not need to worry about this because all companies are required to have insurance in place by law that covers such an incident.
If you have been dismissed following your absence from work due to an accident, injury or illness that occurs in the workplace, the best thing to do is contact us so that we can help you investigate the issue and launch a claim for the compensation that you deserve. We have helped several people to secure a payout when they have been dismissed after an accident at work.
- General damages (Pain and suffering)
- Psychological injuries
- Loss of income
- Travel costs
- Medical costs
- Care costs
- …. Any other out of pocket expenses!
You will probably want to know how much compensation you will get if you launch a claim. It is important to stress that all cases are handled individually because many different factors determine the payout a claimant receives. This includes everything from the severity of injury to the amount of time spent off work. Therefore, it is impossible to give you an accurate figure regarding how much you will receive. However, after we have spoken to you in greater length, we can offer estimated payout amounts for specific injuries that have taken place. Please refer to the table below for this.
|Brain damage||Moderate – severe||£166,500 - £214,350 To £1 Million Plus with loss of earnings.|
|Wrist injury||Severe - mild||£2,550 - £44,500|
|Back injury||Mild||£350 - £9,850 To £100,000 Plus with loss of earnings.|
|Foot injury||Extremely serious||£64,000 - £152,750 To £100,000 Plus with loss of earnings.|
|Finger injury||Mild – severe||£375 - £69,330|
|Neck injury||Mild||£1,800 - £6,200 To £100,000 Plus with loss of earnings.|
|Arm injury||Mild||£4,500 - £30,250|
|Knee injury||Serious – moderate||£20,250 - £33,200 To £100,000 Plus with loss of earnings.|
|Facial disfigurement||Significant scarring – Female||£13,650 - £22,875|
If you cannot find the injury you have sustained in the table above, you are more than welcome to give us a call, and we will happily advise further.
Now let’s take a look at what to do after an accident at work. If you suffer an injury or illness in the workplace, it is essential to gather as much evidence as possible. As already mentioned, you need to report the accident to your employer as soon as possible.
Aside from this, it would be best if you saw a medical professional. Not only is this vital for your health, but the medical report will be used to determine how much compensation you receive. You should also take photographs of the scene and your injuries, if visible, in addition to gathering witness contact information.
You will be pleased to learn that all of our cases are 100% No Win No Fee. You will only pay for legal fees should your claim be successful, and compensation is awarded. If this happens, a percentage of your compensation will be given to your lawyer as the legal fee. This will be a percentage that you have both agreed on beforehand. This means that there is no financial risk associated with making a claim when choosing our service.
There are many reasons why you should choose us as your accident claim service. This includes a level of experience, our altogether No Win No Fee claims service, our reputation, our track record, and the fact that we always put our customers first. We always aim to secure the highest amount of compensation, yet we do this most efficiently so that you can focus on your recovery.
If you are ready to launch a claim, or you would like further information about your rights, the accident at work procedure, or access free legal advice, please do not hesitate to contact us. We are open seven days a week, 24 hours a day.
This link explains more about agency worker rights:
This link takes you to the UK Government’s guide on reporting accidents that have happened in the workplace.