A Guide To Chest Injury Compensation Claims – How To Make A Chest Injury Compensation Claim

 chest injury compensation and chest injury claims

Chest injury compensation claims guide.

By Fern Easton. Last Updated 2nd March 2021. Welcome to our guide on chest injury compensation, where we’ll be looking at the chest injury claims process in detail. This is an online guide for those who have experienced a chest injury due to the negligence of a third party and are seeking compensation.

The term chest injury is rather broad and could include a wide variety of injury types and illnesses. This online guide outlines the different types of injury and how a third party could be at fault, and how our solicitors could be of service.

If a third party has inflicted a chest injury, you may be unsure of your legal position. Not only could a chest injury result in physical pain, but it could also affect your daily routine, psychological well-being, and potential earnings. If a third party has caused your chest injury and you wish to make a claim, there are a lot of different factors that need to be taken into consideration. This online guide discusses chest injuries and outlines how a negligent third party could be liable for accidents leading to a chest injury. It also outlines how our personal injury solicitors could assist you when pursuing a claim for compensation.

If at any point you become confused about the content of this guide, or if you have questions about chest injury claims, then please contact a member of our team today.

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A Guide To Chest Injury Compensation Claims

This is an online guide for those who have experienced a chest injury and are considering making a claim against a negligent party.

The severity of a chest injury could range from minor to major, but regardless of how severe the injury is, it should always be taken seriously. In drastic cases, a chest injury could be life-altering. Injuries and illnesses to the chest can have many different causes; some illnesses happen due to a range of factors that are out of a person’s control, but if they were to happen and could have been prevented, a claim for damages may be possible.

If a third party is to blame for your chest injury, then you could consider a claim for compensation. This online guide aims to answer questions relating to chest injuries such as:

  • What is a chest injury?
  • How do you know if a chest injury is serious?
  • What are the signs and symptoms of chest injuries?
  • What are the two types of chest injuries?
  • What is the recovery time for a chest wall injury?

What Is A Chest Injury?

You might be wondering what the signs and symptoms of a chest injury are and how chest injuries could be caused. The term ‘chest injury’ is somewhat broad, as there are a variety of different injury types and illnesses that could affect that area of the body. In this section of the article, the focus will primarily be upon negligence that could affect the health of a person’s heart, lungs, and chest.

Common examples of a chest injury may be broken down and categorised. These could include:

  • Broken Bones and Fractures – This could include broken ribs, damage to the clavicle, sternum, or breastbone.
  • Tissue Damage – This could impact the muscles, tendons, and ligaments within the chest.
  • Chronic Illnesses – This is where the heart and lungs could be affected by a negligent employer or poor working conditions. For example, chronic illnesses such as asbestosis could be caused by employer negligence.

Causes Of A Chest Injury

In most cases, there may be two potential causes of a chest injury. These could include:

  • Impact trauma to the chest- This is where an injury could be caused through a slip and trip accident, the impact of a car crash, or criminal assault*.
  • Exposure to toxic fumes could cause a chest injury. This is where a negligent party fails to identify and acknowledge toxic fumes, not providing special equipment where needed, resulting in a traumatic chest injury or illness (such as lung cancer).

*Please note that criminal assault compensation claims have their own particular processes. If applicable, please read this guide to criminal injury claims.

Causes Of Chest Injuries In The Workplace

A chest injury caused by an employer is an unfortunate yet possible outcome if the employer neglects their duty of care to staff. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) outlines that an employer has both an ethical and legal responsibility to the safety of their employees. To ensure workplace safety has been achieved, it is recommended that employers:

  • Perform risk assessments
  • Maintain a clean working environment
  • Perform routine inspections
  • Provide appropriate equipment and training

If an employer fails to uphold their duty of care and in not performing these crucial steps, it could lead to an injury that could have been avoided.

Chest injury at work statistics

According to HSE statistics, the torso is the third most injured body part when considering non-fatal injuries in the workplace. In 2019/20, 14,334 torso injuries were reported to HSE.

Chest injury at work statistics graph

Chest injury at work statistics graph

When we look at the table above, it’s clear that the most common kind of torso injury, both when looking at the total number of injures and injuries with over 7 days absence, is injury to the back. However, injuries to the trunk, which includes the chest, account for the highest number of specified injuries to the torso. Specified injuries include:

  • Fractures
  • Crush injuries
  • Burns covering more than 10% of the body or which causes significant damage to the respiratory system
  • Loss of consciousness as a result of asphyxia
  • Injuries arising from working in an enclosed space requiring hospital admission for more than 24 hours.

Torso injuries are the second highest single-site accident type that leads to deaths in workplaces in Great Britain. In 2019/20, 111 fatal accidents were reported to HSE. 15 of these were linked to torso injuries; only injuries to the head had a higher number of fatal accidents at 27. This is excluding injuries to several locations, general locations or unspecified locations.

Fatal accident torso injuries statistics graph

Fatal accident torso injuries statistics graph

Looking at the graph above, we can see that the most common kinds of torso injury that results in death are those to the trunk. The second most frequent fatal torso injuries were sustained to several locations in the torso, which means that some of these reported injuries may also include injuries to the trunk, including the chest.

Types Of Chest Injuries

As previously stated, there are (broadly speaking) different causes of chest injuries, including physical impact and exposure to toxic substances (such as asbestos). For example, an asbestos illness/injury could occur if an employer fails to uphold the Health & Safety requirements outlined by the HSE by not providing PPE.

Broken And Fractured Rib Injury Claims

People may suffer broken or fractured ribs due to high impact accidents. For example, road traffic accidents could cause a variety of injuries to the chest due to the sheer force and impact of a collision between vehicles. If that is the case and you have suffered a traumatic chest injury due to the negligence of a road user, you could make a road traffic claim for compensation against the negligent party. To make a successful claim of this nature, the liability of the third-party must be proven.

Traumatic Chest Injuries

There are many examples of traumatic chest injuries such as; cardiac tamponade, aortic disruption, blunt trauma chest injuries, sternal fractures, pneumothorax, to name but a few. They can have many different causes, but a major cause is a physical accident. Car and road traffic accidents are a common cause of traumatic chest injuries, also being crushed or falling from a height can cause a severe chest injury. Some can be accidents and the fault of no one. However, if the accident was caused due to a breach in the duty of care owed to you and has left you suffering a traumatic chest injury, you may be eligible to make a claim.

Lung Damage

Those who experience traumatic chest injuries could experience pneumothorax, which is another term for a collapsed lung. In basic terms, a pneumothorax is where a pocket of air gets into the space between the outside of your lung and the inside of your ribcage/chest wall.  If you have a minor pneumothorax injury, this could be reduced in size and get better with time and medicine. But if you have a large pneumothorax injury, this may require urgent treatment. The air that is trapped between the wall of the chest and the lung is often caused by a tear on the outside of the lung or if the body has a chest injury. Other cause of a pneumothorax injury might include;

A lung illness could be caused by poor working conditions, lack of training or no Personal Protect Equipment provided. If you are someone who works in an industry/job role where you could encounter asbestos, then your employer should provide you with the equipment and training to mitigate the dangers. Without being correctly informed, exposure to asbestos could result in health complications. Asbestos has been known to inflict serious illness on the body, causing conditions such as asthma, bronchitis, and lung cancer. This could have a drastic and traumatic impact on the quality of one’s life and one’s life expectancy.

Blunt Force Cardiac Injuries

A blunt force injury to the chest area could cause serious damage to the organs within the chest. A blunt chest trauma often refers to the damages caused by a collision with a blunt surface or object. A blunt force cardiac injury could cause:

  • A collapsed lung.
  • Hemothorax – This is where blood accumulates in parts of the chest cavity.
  • Trauma to the heart
  • Cardiac Tamponade – This is where blood and fluid collect around the heart in a sac.

Chest Injury Symptoms

In certain scenarios, a strike to the chest could result in minor injuries, pain, and distress. The symptoms associated with a blow to the chest can vary depending on the type of incident and. injuries affiliated. For instance, some people might experience pain in the wall of the chest after experiencing a minor injury, and in some cases, these damages naturally heal over time.  Some people experience symptoms such as:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Confusion
  • Cold skin
  • Blue colouration
  • Drowsiness

In some situations, those affected by a minor chest injury might have difficulty breathing and experience pain when coughing, sneezing, or applying pressure to the area. If you experience a chest injury due to physical impact, it could cause a broken rib. A broken rib could present:

  • Sharp pain in the chest
  • Pain when coughing or sneezing
  • Pain that increases when you press or lie on the area

Chest Injury Treatment

The type of treatment you receive depends on the injury, its severity, and whether or not it’s life-threatening. Injuries that require immediate medical attention will be treated as soon as possible to prevent escalation. For example, people being treated for a chest injury may be given oxygen and pain relievers. In some cases where a chest injury could cause a collapsed lung, emergency treatment could be performed.

Chest Injury Compensation Claims Calculator

If you have experienced a chest injury in an accident that was not your fault, you might pursue a claim for compensation. If that is the case, then you could use a personal injury claims calculator to provide an estimated compensation figure. However, it is worth remembering that all claims for compensation are inherently different, and the compensation you may be awarded will be for your unique circumstances. If you pursue a compensation claim successfully, the severity of your injuries and the overall impact on your life will be taken into consideration in determining the amount you may receive in damages. To create a rough outline of the compensation that could be awarded in terms of general damages, we have supplied the table below. You may be able to obtain a more accurate estimation of the potential compensation award amount from one of our solicitors.

InjurySeverity Amount Awarded Description of The Injury
Chest InjuriesMinor£5,000 to £11,820This is where a toxic fume has resulted residual damage, but not enough to cause significant damage to the lung function.
Chest InjuriesModerately Severe£61,710 to £94,470An injury of this nature would result in a traumatic injury to the chest, lungs, or heart. In the higher end of the bracket, an injury of this calibre might cause physical disability or the reduction of life expectancy.
Chest InjuriesSevere£29,380 to £51,460An injury of this severity might cause continuous disability to the chest and lungs.
Lung DiseaseSevere£65,710 to £91,350An injury of this nature might result in lung cancer, causing severe pain, a lesser quality of life, or a shorter life expectancy.
Asbestos-Related DiseaseSerious £65,710 to £118,150This is where an exposure to asbestos leads to diseases such as lung cancer or mesothelioma. In many cases, an illness of this nature might result in pain, suffer a shorter span of life.
PTSDLess severe£3,710 to £7,680In minor cases of PTSD, the affected individual is expected to make a fully recovery in two years and display minimal after effects. In order to make a full recovery, the affected individual will most likely need the assistance of a medical professional and support.
PTSDModerate
£7,680 to £21,730

The affected individual will have largely recovered and any continuing effects will not be grossly disabling.
PTSDSevere/Moderately Severe £21,730 to £94,470Such cases will involve permanent effects which prevent the injured person from working at all or at least from functioning at anything approaching the pre-trauma level.

Special Damages Awarded In Chest Injury Claims

When pursuing a claim for compensation, there may be numerous elements that could play a significant role within the process. In addition to the physical damages you have experienced after a chest injury, you could potentially have grounds to claim compensation for the financial loss, which would come in the form of special damages. For example, if a negligent third party has inflicted life-altering health conditions upon you such as lung cancer, asbestosis, mesothelioma, and emphysema, the financial losses you may have incurred such as loss of income, medical expenses, travel expenses, care expenses could be accounted for within a potential settlement amount.

No Win No Fee Chest Injury Compensation Claims

If you have suffered from a chest injury due to third party negligence, you might be searching for a personal injury solicitor to conduct your claim. If a third party’s negligence has inflicted a chest injury upon you, you could be eligible to make a claim under a no win no fee agreement. No win no fee agreements may also be referred to as Conditional Fee Agreements (CFA). In simple terms, this acts as a contract between the claimant and the personal injury solicitor, stating that the claimant may be required to pay a success fee if the case has a successful outcome. By English law, this fee is capped at 25%.

A solicitor might only offer a no win no fee agreement to those with a strong case. If a solicitor accepts a claim under a no win no fee agreement but fails to win a settlement, the agreement could reduce potential costs to the claimant. If you have any questions about the no win no fee claims process, please contact a member of our team.

Why Choose Our Team For A Chest Injury Claim

If you have been injured due to the negligence of a third party, then you could have grounds to claim compensation. Although there are many different solicitors who could handle your claim, Accident Claims UK could connect you with a solicitor experienced in conducting compensation claims similar to your own. If you have suffered a chest injury through third party negligence and are considering claiming compensation, contact a member of our team today.

It is worth remembering that compensation claims could be affected by a personal injury claim time limit known as a ‘limitation period’. This means you have 3 years from the accident date or from the date your injuries were medically diagnosed to begin your claim. There may be exceptions in some instances, so to discover more information and to find out whether your claim meets the time limit, please contact a member of our team today.

Start Your Chest Injury Claim

To begin your chest injury claim with a personal injury solicitor, why not contact a member of our team? Here at Accident Claims UK, our friendly advisors are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. To speak with an advisor, please call us on 0800 073 8801. Our phone lines are free to call, and our advisors are more than happy to take your call and speak with you. In addition to a phone call, you could inquire about your potential claim online. We have an online enquiry form that you could fill out and submit. Once submitted, a member of our team may review your potential claim and contact you in due course.

Essential References

We hope that this online guide has successfully outlined the different effects relating to a chest injury and how a third party could be at fault. In relation to this online guide and the information that has been provided, we wanted to supply extra materials that could be of use when seeking compensation. From relevant sources such as the NHS, the HSE and Citizen’s Advice, you can find these materials located down below.

Accident at Work – How To Make A Compensation Claim

Misdiagnosis – What Causes Misdiagnosis and How Can I Claim?

Work-related illness – Claiming Compensation for a Work-Related Illness

NHS – Rib Fractures and Chest Injuries

HSE – Health and Safety At Work Act 1974

HSE- Occupational asthma 

Thank you for reading our guide on chest injury compensation, and we hope to have answered any questions you have about chest injury claims.

Article by MB

Edited by PM