By Fern Easton. Last Updated 25th February 2021. Welcome to our guide on tattoo injury negligence claims. Deciding to get a tattoo could be considered a big decision. By its very nature, a tattoo is supposed to be permanent, and if it goes wrong, it could leave you permanently scarred. From blood-borne infections to abscesses and tattoos that badly blister and scar, if a tattoo artist is at fault for a tattoo injury you’ve received, then you may be able to claim compensation. But how do you prove a tattoo artist is at fault for your injury? At Accident Claims UK, we have created this guide to assist you if this is the position you’ve found yourself in. Within the sections of this guide, we’ll cover what responsibilities a tattoo artist has to you, what hygiene practices should be followed and when you might be eligible to make a claim. Do you still have questions about tattoo injury negligence claims after reading? Simply call 0800 073 8801, and one of our professional advisors could help set you on the path to tattoo compensation if you are eligible.
Select A Section
- A Guide To Tattoo Compensation Claims
- What Is A Tattoo Injury Or Illness?
- What Should A Tattoo Artist Do Before, During And After The Tattoo Procedure?
- Do Tattoo Artists Owe Customers A Duty Of Care?
- What Accidents Could A Tattoo Artist Make?
- Could I Claim If I Acquired An Infection In A Tattoo Parlor?
- Could I Claim For A Poor Tattoo?
- Could I Claim If A Tattoo Artist Tattooed My Child?
- Could I Claim For Tattoo Removal Accidents?
- Other Accidents Which Could Happen In A Tattoo Parlor
- Tattoo Artist Workplace Accidents
- UK Tattoo Statistics
- Tattoo Personal Injury Claims Calculator
- What Could I Claim Compensation And Damages For?
- No Win No Fee Tattoo Compensation Claim
- How Our Solicitors Could Help You Make A Tattoo Injury Claim
- Start Your Tattoo Compensation Claim
- Essential References
Have you had a tattoo that has gone wrong? Were you left with the wrong design that was completely different from what you ordered? Did you suffer an infection that has led to an unsightly scar, or have you contracted a blood-borne infection that has had serious consequences? If you’re wondering whether any of these could lead to a compensation claim, then you may have found just the right information to help you. Within this guide, we cover all you may need to know when seeking tattoo injury compensation. We’ll cover what could be considered a tattoo artist’s fault, the types of infection you could receive from a tattoo that has not been done properly, and how we could help you make a claim for compensation. We’ll also provide some useful reading material at the bottom of this guide that could further assist you.
If your tattoo artist has not adhered to basic standards for hygiene and good health and safety practices for clients and you suffer some kind of tattoo injury, you could claim compensation. There could be many ways in which you could be injured while getting a tattoo. These could include:
- Injuries that occur within the tattoo parlour such as slips, trips and falls
- Infections from poor hygiene practices; these could cause an abscess that might leave you with a permanent scar
- Allergic reactions to chemicals
- Other skin conditions
- Excessive bruising
- Allergic reaction
- Excessive bleeding
If you could prove that a tattoo artist was at fault for your tattoo injury, then you may be able to claim compensation for your injury and any costs you might have incurred because of it.
There are certain steps a tattoo artist should take before, during and after tattooing a client. These should include:
Before Getting A Tattoo
- Check clients are over 18
- Ask medical questions to determine your suitability
- Inform you of risks and get your consent
- Ensure equipment, skin and surfaces are clean and dust-free
- Wear appropriate gloves
- Use a new needle for each new tattoo client
- Provide adequate aftercare advice
Extending aftercare – checking all is ok and giving advice on healing.
If a tattoo artist does not do this and you suffer a tattoo injury, they may be deemed liable for your injury, and you could be eligible to claim compensation.
To start your claim today, or to find out more about tattoo injury negligence claims, get in touch with our helpful team today.
A tattoo artist does owe a duty of care to clients. They should perform their trade to a reasonable standard, and they should do so with skill. They should also ensure they provide a clean, safe place in which to provide their services, to reduce the risks of infection. Your tattoo studio should ensure that they:
- Check their clients are over the age of 18 (This is because tattoos cannot be performed on minors)
- Have consent from the client to perform tattooing services. This consent needs to come from someone who is fully informed of the risks and aftercare requirements of a tattoo.
- Check there are no prior medical conditions that could affect their health and safety by getting a tattoo.
- Keep client’s consent and medical assessments for up to two years.
- Follow stringent procedures for handwashing and glove usage.
- Use new needles that are sterile for each client.
- Ensure proper aftercare advice is provided
- Ensure proper disposal of used waste that has been contaminated with blood, including used needles
- And more.
Failure to adhere to these basic standards may mean a tattoo artist could be held liable to personal injury claims against them if it could be proven that their negligence caused harm to a client.
By its very nature, a tattoo is meant to be a permanent thing, and if you have suffered a tattoo injury that has left you with a permanent scar, or led to an infection, then you may be regretting the decision you made to have one. There are many ways in which a tattoo could go wrong because of mistakes made by a tattoo accident. If you have had a tattoo injury, it may be because:
- Your tattoo artist did not sterilise equipment or their working area properly, and it led to you suffering an infection such as MRSA or cellulitis, for example.
- You contract contact dermatitis or impetigo because your tattoo artist didn’t change gloves between clients.
- Your tattoo artist was too heavy-handed with the needles, and it left you with a scar. If you want to know can you sue a tattoo artist for scarring in the UK, then you would need to prove that it was their fault the scarring occurred and not through poor aftercare by you.
- You are not asked about whether you have an allergy, and you have an allergic reaction to the ink.
Whatever the reason you’re considering launching a tattoo injury claim against your tattoo studio, please get in touch, and we’ll advise whether you could be eligible to claim tattoo injury compensation.
If good hygiene practices aren’t followed in a tattoo parlour, then you could contract some sort of infection.
This is because bacteria could enter the skin through open wounds. Bacteria are present almost everywhere, from surfaces such as shelves and chairs in a tattoo parlour to the tattoo equipment. They could also be present on a client or tattoo artist’s skin. Because tattooing causes openings within the layers of the skin, if the equipment, skin and chair aren’t properly cleaned before the tattooing commences, there could be a greater risk of bacteria entering through the skin while a tattoo is in progress.
This is why tattoo studios should have stringent hygiene and cleaning protocols to follow. Tattoo equipment should be kept sterilised, and antibacterial cleaner should be used on your skin and on the chair before the tattooing begins. A new needle should be used for each client, and a fresh pair of gloves should be worn by the tattooist for each new tattoo.
When asking, ‘can you sue a tattoo artist for infection?’ the answer could depend on whether you could prove that it was the tattoo parlour’s fault that you contracted the infection. If you could prove the hygiene practices within the tattoo studio were not up to scratch, then you could potentially make a claim. Proving this could be complex, as the tattoo parlour may think that poor aftercare practices may have led to your infection. Having an experienced personal injury solicitor could assist with helping build a case that a tattoo parlour might find hard to dispute. You could also if you believe your tattoo parlour was at fault for a tattoo injury, speak to your local council to get them to investigate if you feel that poor hygiene practices were to blame. If the local authority finds in an investigation that hygiene practices were not up to scratch, this could be valuable evidence that could be used in a tattoo injury claim.
If you’ve suffered an infection at a tattoo parlour and would like to know more about tattoo injury negligence claims, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us today.
One common question surrounding tattoo claims is ‘can you sue someone for a bad tattoo?’ Unfortunately, if the tattoo has not injured you in any way, and you have not been the victim of tattoo artist malpractice by way of causing you to suffer an infection, allergic reaction, or scarring, for example, you would not likely be able to claim tattoo compensation. This is because it could be expected that you should have done research into the tattoo artist that gave you the tattoo.
However, this does not mean you cannot do anything if a tattoo artist messed up – what to do may involve complaining to the salon and asking them to fix what is wrong with the tattoo or asking for a partial/full refund for the money you paid for such a tattoo. However, they would not be legally obliged to offer you this, and it would be offered at their discretion if it was offered at all.
However, if the tattoo artist has drawn a completely different design to what you ordered, and you could prove this, you may have cause to look into making a tattoo injury claim against the tattooist or tattoo parlour. It may be worth speaking to one of our advisors to see if this could be the case for you.
Has a child under 18 in your care had a tattoo in a tattoo parlour? If so, did you know that you could make a claim for compensation? A tattoo lawsuit could be brought against a tattooist if they gave a person that was under 18 a tattoo, and this is even the case if a parent consents to the tattoo being done. This is because, according to the law, it is illegal for any person to tattoo an under-18 year old. Because the person that may be asking for the tattoo is under 18, they are not considered to have full capacity to understand the risks and future effects of having a permanent tattoo; therefore, the person tattooing them could be held responsible for a tattoo given to a minor.
Identification should always be requested before tattoos are done, and if a tattooist does not request identification and the client is found to be a minor, this could be considered tattoo negligence, and they could be liable to pay compensation if a tattoo claim is brought against them.
If you are looking to have a tattoo removed, you may visit the parlour that you had it done at if they offer tattoo removal, or you may decide to go somewhere else. Usually, if a tattoo is not covered over and you would like it completely removed, this is usually done by way of a high-intensity beam of light being directed at the area. This works to break down the ink of the tattoo so that it fades and eventually disappears. You would usually be required to attend a few sessions to get your tattoo removed.
The technology used in laser tattoo removal could be considered relatively new, and because of this, tattoo removal is not regulated to the same degree as older, more established services would be. You should be informed of any risks before you undergo a tattoo removal, and the person performing the service should ensure that:
- The equipment they use is fit for purpose, checked and maintained regularly and adheres to current regulations.
- They do not leave the equipment on you too long or hold it too close to the skin.
- You are in a good state of health, medically speaking, before removal goes ahead.
- They adhere to health and safety requirements
- They give you adequate aftercare instructions
If your tattoo removal has left you with scarring that you did not expect, or you have suffered some other reaction, then you might wish to look into whether you could make a personal injury claim for your injuries.
To find out what other accidents could form the basis of tattoo injury negligence claims, please continue reading to the next section.
In essence, if you have an accident within a tattoo parlour and it could have been avoided if the parlour had taken reasonable care of your health and safety, you may be able to claim compensation, even if the injury you’ve sustained had nothing to do with your tattoo. Examples could include:
- Being injured on a broken chair within the tattoo parlour
- Slipping on a spillage that had not been cleared up and suffering injuries in this way
- Tripping on flooring that had not been affixed properly
- And more…
A tattoo business is responsible for the health and safety of its clients and anyone else using its premises. They should have public liability insurance in place to pay out claims for accidents that happen within their parlour that they could be held liable for.
If you work in a tattoo parlour and have been injured in an accident at work, you may not be aware that if your employer could be deemed at fault for our accident, you may be able to make a claim for compensation. Any employer has a legal duty to look after the safety and the health of their staff while they are at work, and if they do not do so to a reasonable standard and you are injured, you may be able to make a claim for compensation.
Some of the ways in which an employer could be seen as taking care of employees’ health and safety could include:
- Ensuring staff are trained in how to do their job safely.
- Ensuring they are provided with PPE where necessary to avoid risks within their job.
- Ensuring PPE is checked and maintained, replaced or repaired when needed.
- Ensuring the workplace is free from trip hazards or that they are signposted
- And more…
If you feel that your employer has not taken care of your health and safety and this has led to you suffering an injury at work, then we could help you begin a claim for compensation if you are eligible to do so.
It might be prudent for us to mention that even if a condition has developed over time, such as dermatitis, if your employer did not act to reduce foreseeable risks of you developing such a condition and you went on to develop it, you may also wish to look into making a claim for compensation.
It has been reported that approximately one-fifth of adults in Britain have a tattoo, according to a 2015 survey. 30% of people in Britain aged 25 to 39 have been tattooed at least once. There is clearly a market for tattoos in the UK, and you may have noticed the presence of more tattoo shops on UK high streets that may have been opened to cater to this demand.
While it is true that many tattoos are applied correctly and safely, a report by the Royal Society for Public Health revealed that approximately 18% of people who had a tattoo, cosmetic piercing, or other procedure involving needles such as acupuncture or electrolysis, had negative side effects. Side effects that may be experienced could include soreness, swelling or bruising, or more serious side effects such as allergic reactions, the passing of blood-borne infections or diseases. Even more worryingly, two out of five people who underwent one of these procedures did not check to see if the person performing their procedure was licensed or registered to do so. The same report revealed that in Scotland in 2010, four cases of mycobacterium chelonae infection were traced back to a particular tattoo artist in a studio in Edinburgh.
However mild or severe the side effects of your tattoo have been, if you have suffered due to unsafe practices within a tattoo parlour, you may be entitled to claim compensation for this. You would need to take action within the personal injury claims time limit, however. This is, for most personal injury claims, 3 years from the date of the tattoo or from the date it was discovered that your illness/injury was due to your tattoo. However, there could be some exceptions to this limitation period. If you’re not sure whether you could claim, then simply get in touch, and we’ll assess your circumstances and let you know how long you could have to claim.
Read on to find out more about what can be included in tattoo injury negligence claims.
If you’ve seen a personal injury claims calculator on another site and expected the same here, then it may surprise you to see the table below, which gives you an approximation of payouts for specific injuries relating to tattoo injury negligence claims. The reason we have put in this table instead of a calculator on this page is that it gives a quick snapshot of the sort of payouts that certain injuries could attract, which could save you time in inputting your details. These are, of course, only approximate amounts, as published in the Judicial College Guidelines, as the full extent of your injuries and the award they could attract would not be known until all the medical evidence is gathered and examined.
|Dermatitis||£12,900 to £18,020||On both hands. Soreness and cracking would be present and symptoms could have an effect on domestic and working life. The symptoms could last for a long time and may have some psychological effect on the claimant.|
|Dermatitis||£8,110 to £10,710||Either one or both hands, continuing for quite some time but use of treatment/gloves etc could help to calm symptoms down.|
|Irritation, itching and rashes||£1,600 to £3,710||On one or both hands, recovery within a few weeks.|
|Very Severe Scarring (Facial)||£27,940 to £91,350||The effects would be very disfiguring and usually have a significant psychological effect on a claimant. Claimants in this bracket are typically fairly young, from teenagers to early 30s.|
|Less Severe Scarring (Facial)||£16,860 to £45,440||Substantial disfigurement with a significant level of psychological harm.|
|Significant Scarring (Facial)||£8,550 to £28,240||Effects could be reduced by way of plastic surgery, but this would leave some cosmetic disabilities. Psychological reaction may have reduced with time.|
|Less Significant Scarring (Facial)||£3,710 to £12,900||One scar that could be camouflaged, or several small scars that might affect, but not markedly mar the appearance.|
|Scarring elsewhere on the body||£2,220 to £7,350||One single scar that is noticeable, or several scars that are superficial to the hands, arms or legs. These would leave some minor cosmetic effects.|
If your injury isn’t listed above, please do not think you would not be able to claim for it. Instead, simply call us and explain the details of your tattoo injury, and we’ll talk to you about the guideline amounts for your specific injury.
As well as the amounts we’ve detailed above, which could be classed as general damages, special damages to cover financial losses may be included in tattoo injury negligence claims. This might include:
Lost income – If your tattoo injury meant you had to take time off work, and you lost out on some or all of your pay because of this, then tattoo injury compensation might include lost wages.
Medical fees – If you had to visit a private skin repair clinic or had to pay for prescriptions resulting directly from your tattoo injury, these could also be claimed for as part of your tattoo compensation claim.
Travel costs – Parking charges and travel to appointments concerning your injury or your claim may also be included within a tattoo claim.
Care costs – If you had to pay to put your children into childcare, or you required assistance with day to day living activities at home because of your injuries, then these costs could be classed as special damages too.
Whatever costs or losses you’ve faced because of your tattoo injury, it could be wise to keep proof of these somewhere safe so that you could evidence these as part of your tattoo injury claim.
Making a tattoo injury claim would not necessitate you paying out for legal representation upfront. If you choose to go ahead with a no win no fee personal injury solicitor, they would simply ask you to sign an agreement that you would pay them a success fee from your eventual payout. This success fee, as detailed in the Conditional Fee Agreement, would have to be, by law, no more than 25% of your settlement. If the lawyer in question didn’t secure you a compensation payout for your tattoo injury claim, you would not be required to pay them the success fee for a valid claim.
If you have questions about how this all works or would like to know why some solicitors might ask you to take out an insurance policy to cover legal fees in the event of an unsuccessful claim, we’ll be happy to explain.
All you need to do is call us, and we’ll be happy to give you more information on tattoo injury negligence claims or chat about your case to get your claim started today.
By calling Accident Claims UK, you could get free advice and support on making a tattoo injury claim. Our friendly, professional helpline advisors would take down some details of what has happened to you, and we may ask you a few questions too. Once we have all the details we need to assess your case, we’ll let you know whether we think you could be eligible for compensation. If we do not think your claim would end in a payout, we will be honest with you and tell you this. We’ll also explain why. If we do think your claim would result in a payout, we could then go ahead and offer to provide you with a personal injury lawyer from our panel who could help you with your tattoo injury claim. You do not have to take this offer, and you don’t have to take our advice either. We won’t put you under any obligation to use our services. We’re here to help if you would like us to, however.
Are you ready to begin a claim for compensation for a tattoo injury? If so, then there are various ways to get in touch with us. Whether you prefer to call our helpline on 0800 073 8801, email email@example.com, use the Live Chat of Contact Form; we’re ready to do all that we can to take the stress out of claiming. We look forward to hearing from you.
Tattoo injury negligence claims- FAQs
Can I claim against my tattoo artist if I don’t like the result?
Usually, no. The tattoo artist has a duty of care to you as a member of the public in their parlour. It’s their responsibility to ensure that their tattoo shop is a safe place to be and you’re not at undue risk of any accidents while you’re on the premises. It’s also up to them to ensure that you aren’t at risk of infections that may be passed on my unsanitary equipment such as needles or gloves. However, it’s not within their duty of care to make sure that you’re confident in your decision to get a tattoo and if you regret your decision afterwards, even if it’s because the artwork is poor, you won’t be able to make a claim.
What kind of tattoo injuries could I claim for?
You can make a claim for any injury you sustain in a tattoo parlour that’s the result of your tattoo artist neglecting their duty of care to you. This can be injuries related directly to your tattoo, like an infection that’s passed on because the equipment or environment wasn’t properly sterilised. But you could also claim if you’ve injured yourself in something like a trip or fall that was the result of poor housekeeping, such as a spill that wasn’t cleaned up or signposted properly. And this isn’t just the case for members of the public. If you’re employed at a tattoo shop and are injured because your employer neglected their duty of care to you, you may also be able to claim.
Licencing Information For Tattoo Artists – Here, you can see what is required when applying for a licence.
Information About Blood Borne Viruses – The HSE has produced some information about this subject.
Guidance On Tattooing – HSE – This publication covers COSHH guidance for tattooists.
Were You Injured On A Broken Chair At A Tattoo Shop? – If so, this broken chair claims guide could offer some assistance.
Have you been injured while undergoing a beauty treatment? – This guide covers claiming injuries sustained while undergoing a beauty treatment such as skin treatments and waxing.
Accident At Work Claims – Were you injured while working at a tattoo parlour? If so, this guide could help.
Article by Jo
Thank you for reading our guide on tattoo injury negligence claims.