Can I Claim Compensation For A Breach Of Health And Safety At Work?

By Jo Anderson. Last Updated 25th May 2023. In workplaces, a breach of health and safety law can have significant consequences. If you’ve suffered an injury at work because your employer has failed to uphold their duties, you could be entitled to compensation. 

In this guide, we take a look at the health and safety regulations that apply to employers in the UK. We discuss how they could violate them, and what legal rights you have to take action if you suffer an injury.

We also look at compensation payouts under personal injury law, and how to claim on a No Win No Fee basis.

If you’d like to make an accident at work claim right away, however, we can help. Our solicitors specialise in these types of cases and can help you get the compensation you deserve.

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Health And Safety Breach Claims Against Employers

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What Is A Breach Of Health And Safety At Work?

In terms of making a compensation claim, you will need to show that:

  • Your employer owed you a legal duty of care (which we’ll cover shortly).
  • An accident occurred due to a breach of this duty.
  • You suffered an injury or were made ill as a result of the accident.

If you believe your case meets the criteria listed above, you could receive compensation to cover your suffering.

Should you decide to claim, it’s important to understand that it will be against your employer’s insurance policy. That means your claim won’t have an adverse effect on your employer’s profits. Also, by law, you cannot be treated differently, disciplined or fired for suffering an injury and making a personal injury claim against them.

If you’d like to know more about your case and health and safety breach claims, please give us a call on the number above today.

How Do I Know If My Employer Has Breached Health And Saftey Laws?

As previously stated, to be eligible to make an accident at work claim, you will need to prove that you suffered your injuries when your employer breached their duty of care.

Collecting sufficient evidence could help support your workplace accident claim, as it could help prove that your employer was liable for the accident when they breached health and safety law and the injuries you suffered.

Some examples of evidence that could be used to help support your claim include:

  • Any video footage of the accident occurring, such as CCTV.
  • Photographs of the accident site and any visible injuries you suffered, e.g. bruises and cuts.
  • A copy of the report in the accident book.
  • The contact details of any witnesses to the accident so that they can provide a statement about the events at a later date.
  • A copy of your medical records stating the type of injury you suffered and the treatment you required.

If you choose to work with a solicitor on your claim, they could help you with gathering evidence.

Contact our advisors today to learn more about proving there was a breach of health and safety at work by your employer or to see if you could be eligible to work with one of our solicitors.

The Main Points Of The Health and Safety at Work Act

We’re now going to provide a brief overview of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974. Things employers should provide include:

  • Suitable training for all staff to make sure health and safety procedures are understood and followed.
  • A working environment that is safe, properly maintained and where work is carried out safely.
  • Proper welfare provision for staff in the workplace.
  • Adequate instruction, supervision and provision of relevant information.

Where an employer has more than 5 employees, they must have a written health and safety policy. Additionally, they need to consult with employees about those policies and other health and safety procedures.

As well as operating a safe working environment, the legislation means employers need to provide toilet facilities, rest areas, drinking water and other provisions.

You can read the legislation in full by following the link in the first part of our guide.

What other legislation covers health and safety at work?

There are many different pieces of legislation that could be used to prove that your employer had a duty of care. They include:

You needn’t worry too much about which piece of legislation is relevant for your case though. If you choose to work with Accident Claims UK, and your case is accepted, your solicitor should use their legal experience to ensure the claim is filed correctly. Please contact our team of specialists to discuss health and safety claims against employers.

What Duty Of Care Does My Employer Owe Me?

As mentioned in the previous section, a legal duty of care comes from legislation. In the case of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974, employers have a duty ‘to ensure, so far as is reasonably practical, the health, safety and welfare at work of all employees’.

The legislation goes on to explain that the duty includes:

  • Keeping machinery well maintained.
  • Providing adequate training.
  • Ensuring dangerous substances are stored, transported and used safely.
  • Maintaining a safe working environment.

Regardless of the type of workplace that you work in, health and safety regulations should apply. Therefore, you are covered for work that takes place in (for example):

  • Office environments.
  • Building sites.
  • Retail premises.
  • Restaurants, bars and cafes.

Whatever type of company you work for, we could help if you’ve been injured due to a breach of health and safety. Please call one of our specialist advisors today and explain your scenario. If your case is suitable, it might be accepted by a personal injury solicitor who’ll represent you on a No Win No Fee basis.

Examples Of Health And Safety Breaches

A breach of health and safety could lead to an injury. When there is a breach of health and safety regulations by your employer, and you are harmed as a result, this is known as employer negligence. In order to make a claim for negligence, you will need to support your claim with evidence.

Health and safety breaches can include, but are not limited to:

  • Wet floors
  • Faulty/damaged equipment
  • Inadequate training
  • Lack of personal protective equipment (PPE)

For more information on whether you could claim due to a specific breach of health and safety regulations by your employer, get in touch with our advisors today.

Health And Safety Breaches Affecting Temporary And Self-Employed Workers

You might think that as a temporary worker, you wouldn’t have the same rights as other employees. However, when it comes to health and safety, you do. The employer has the same duty to try and keep you safe while you’re working for them. That means if you are injured because of a breach of health and safety rules, you could be eligible to claim.

The same goes for self-employed workers in some cases. If you run your own business or are freelancing, and you work on somebody else’s premises then you could be due compensation if they breach their duty of care and cause you to suffer an injury.

If you are unsure of your entitlement to claim for your injuries, why not let us know? We can use our experience to find what duty of care you were owed and whether you could take legal action to claim compensation.

Injuries Caused By Health And Safety Breaches

There are many different kinds of injuries that could result from health and safety breaches. In fact, there are too many to list here but they include:

  • Broken or fractured bones.
  • Soft tissue injuries.
  • Head injuries.
  • Back injuries.
  • Cuts, bruises and abrasions.
  • Repetitive strain injuries.
  • Industrial diseases.
  • Chemical burns.

Whatever type of injury you have sustained, if it can be shown to have been caused as a result of someone else’s health and safety breach, you could be compensated for your suffering. We are happy to review any claim for free and explain your options. If you would like to discuss health and safety claims against employers with a specialist,  please call the number above today.

Compensation Payouts In Accident At Work Claims

It is now time to move on to look at potential compensation figures for accident at work claims. It is important to state that claims vary from case to case. Therefore, our compensation table below should be used for guidance only at this point. After your claim has been properly assessed, we should be able to provide a more accurate compensation estimate.

We’ve added a range of different injuries to the table that follows. Do not worry if you don’t see your injury listed. The table is not comprehensive, and you could be entitled to claim for any injury whether it’s listed below or not.

The figures we have supplied are taken from the Judicial College Guidelines. This is a document that insurers, personal injury lawyers and other legal professionals may use to set compensation levels.

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Injury Type Severity Range Details
Facial Disfigurement Significant Scarring £9,110 to £30,090 Scarring of the face where the worst effects can be reduced by plastic surgery but leaving some cosmetic disability.
Cheekbone Fracture £10,200 to £15,780 Serious fractures that leave some element of disfigurement and result in lasting problems like paraesthesia in the lips or cheeks.
Neck Moderate (iii) £7,890 to £13,740 This category includes moderate soft tissue injuries where there has been a protracted recovery period.
Back Minor (ii) £2,450 to £4,350 Soft tissue injuries of the back where full recovery is achieved in around 3 months to two years without surgery.
Arms Amputation Not less than £137,160 At the shoulder arm amputations.
Legs Less Serious (i) £17,960 to £27,760 Fracture injuries where reasonable recovery will have been achieved but where the claimant is left with a limp, impaired mobility or similar issues.
Ankle Moderate Up to £13,740 Tears of ligaments or fractures which result in disabilities like irritation from metal plates or difficulty standing for long periods.

The amounts listed here are known as general damages. This type of compensation aims to cover the pain, suffering and loss of amenity you suffered as a result of your injuries. As you may have noticed, the amount awarded is largely based on the severity of your injuries. For that reason, you’ll need medical evidence to help prove the extent of your suffering. Therefore, during the claims process, you’ll need to have a medical assessment. Our solicitors will always try to ensure these are held locally so you don’t need to travel too far.

In the appointment, an independent medical specialist will assess the current state of your injuries. They’ll also refer to medical records and ask questions about how you have been affected. Once they have completed the assessment, the specialist will write a report to show their findings. That report will then be forwarded to your solicitor.

Special Damages

As well as being compensated for your injuries, you could also be entitled to claim special damages too. This is an award made to cover any costs or losses you’ve suffered because of your injuries. The idea is to put you back in the same financial position as you were before the accident.

Again, each claim will vary but special damages could include:

  • Medical Expenses.
    Most treatment you’ll receive may be free on the NHS. However, a claim might be necessary if you’ve paid out for over-the-counter treatments, prescription costs or treatment that wasn’t available on the NHS.
  • Care Costs.
    If your injuries meant that somebody needed to help with daily activities during your recovery, you could claim for any care costs incurred. For example, if a friend or relative looked after you, then a claim could be made to cover their time.
  • Home Adaptations.
    If you’re left disabled because of your injuries, you might need to make changes to help you cope with daily activities. The cost of these changes could be claimed back.
  • Lost Income.
    You may be able to add any lost earnings to your claim if they were as a result of your injuries.
  • Travel Costs.
    Fuel, parking or public transport costs could be included if they related to doctors’ appointments for instance.
  • Future Lost Earnings.
    Where an injury will affect your ability to work in the future, you may be able to claim for future lost income. The amount may vary but it could be based on job prospects, salary and age.

To substantiate your special damages claim, you’ll need evidence like receipts or bank statements. We’d advise keeping a log of expenditures so you can explain how your costs were linked to your injuries.

Can I Claim Under A No Win No Fee Agreement?

There are times when claims don’t get made because the injured party is worried about the cost of legal representation. To remove a lot of that worry, our personal injury solicitors offer a No Win No Fee service for any claim they take on.

To offer this service, a solicitor will need to check if your claim is suitable. After a review, if both parties are happy to proceed, a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA) will be drawn up. This is your contract. It will set out what the solicitor will need to achieve before they are paid. Also, it will show that:

  • No money for their fee needs to be paid upfront.
  • You won’t be asked to cover any solicitor’s fees during the case.
  • If your case is not won, you will not be liable for any solicitor’s fees at all.

In fact, the only time you will pay solicitor’s fees is when the case is won, and you receive compensation. If that does happen, your solicitor will deduct a percentage of compensation to cover their time. This is called a success fee and it is listed in the CFA. To help prevent overcharging, success fees are capped by law.

Would you like to check if your case is suitable for our No Win No Fee service? If so, please call the number above for a free claim assessment today.

Begin A Claim For A Breach Of Health And Safety

Hopefully, you now understand your rights relating to health and safety claims against employers. If you are thinking that you would now like to begin a claim, we are ready to help. To get in touch with Accident Claims UK, you can:

We don’t want to waste anybody’s time. That’s why we will always be open and honest about the chances of winning your case.

When you call, a specialist will review your claim with you in a free telephone consultation. They will explain your options and provide free advice. If your case appears feasible, they could refer you to one of our personal injury solicitors.

Remember, all claims that are taken on will be handled on a No Win No Fee basis. You can call whenever it is convenient as our claims line is open 24/7.

Learn More About Health And Safety Regulations And Accidents At Work

Thanks for visiting Accident Claims UK today. As this is the final section of our article about health and safety breach claims, we are going to supply links to some external resources. Feel free to let us know if there is any further information we can supply.

Thank you for reading our guide to health and safety claims against employers.