What is a work accident?
Any incident causing an injury which you suffer in relation to your employment can be considered a work accident. So, if you suffer a fall on a staircase in your office buildings because of a loose handrail, you would almost certainly be able to claim against your employer if they own and manage the building.
If your job involves visiting external sites, your employer still owes you a duty of care to ensure that you remain safe while on any business related matters, however, if you suffer an injury whilst on another company's premises, liability for a work accident in this scenario might be split between those responsible for the site and your own employer.
Why do accidents happen in the workplace?
Accidents in the workplace typically occur as a result of employer negligence. For example, breaching of the Health and Safety at Work Act. Common failings include inadequate training or supervision, issues with safety equipment and unsafe working conditions.
Who will pay the cost of compensation?
It is very rare for employers to actually bear the cost of a work accident claim. In the vast majority of cases compensation comes from your the "Employers Liability Insurance". It is a legal requirement for all UK employers to have a policy of this type.
Furthermore, in the event that you are still employed by the defendant there are a number of legal safeguards in place to protect you from unfair dismissal or discrimination made on the basis of your work accident claim.
Do I get paid if I get injured at work
You should receive Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) if you have suffered injury in an accident at work. You may also be contractually entitled to additional sick pay and may qualify for Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit. Any compensation will be calculated in addition to these amounts.
My employer has gone out of business, can I still claim?
Yes, this is because claims are made against insurers rather than the employers themselves. At Thompsons, we have a dedicated team who are experts in tracing defunct businesses and their liability insurers.
Will my case go to court?
Although it is possible that your case will proceed through the court, a relatively small minority of workplace accident cases ever reaches this stage. Most cases end with some form of out-of-court resolution. In fact, the courts encourage such an approach.
How much will it cost to fund my claim?
There are various funding options available to Thompsons' clients. However, it is worth bearing in mind that we offer No Win No Fee funding. This means that unless you win your case, you can rest assured that you will not have to pay to fund your claim in any way.
What are the time limits for work accident claims?
The work accident claim time limit is three years. However, in cases where it took time for the symptoms of your injury to develop, the time limit begins three years from the date of diagnosis.
This means it is possible to claim compensation even if you are retired or no longer work for the former employer responsible for causing an accident.
Can I still claim state benefits?
In many cases you can still claim state benefits even while being the recipient of work accident compensation. Furthermore, Thompsons' work accident solicitors can help you establish a personal injury trust so that you can manage your finances in the way that is most advantageous to you.
Can I claim on behalf of a deceased family member?
It is possible to claim compensation on behalf of a deceased family member, whether or not he or she died as a result of work accident injuries. However, the claim must be brought within three years of the date of death. Similarly, if the pursuer dies while making a claim, the estate can continue on his or her behalf.
Is it possible to seek an interim settlement to help cope with the immediate costs of my injury?
In some cases it is possible for defendants/insurers to reach agreement with work accident solicitors to pay an early stage damages award to a pursuer in order to provide for his or her most immediate and pressing needs.
How will I prove liability?
Most work accident claims are proven on the basis of medical records, witness statements and official workplace health and safety documentation. Your solicitor will guide you clearly and simply through all the processes involved with making a claim for work accident compensation.
What if I was partially liable for the work accident?
In some instances the claimant may bear some responsibility for his or her injuries. In such cases liability may be split. For example, if the court feels your failure to wear protective clothing was 75% of the reason you suffered an injury but the company's failure to give you safety training was 25% of the reason your injuries occurred, the court may only award you 25% percent of the damages you would otherwise have received.
Can I claim if I live outside of Scotland?
Yes. Many of our claimants now live abroad in locations such as France, South Africa and Australia. If you worked in Scotland before you moved overseas, you can bring a claim for compensation in the usual way.
So, what's the next step?
The team of work accident solicitors at Thompsons have extensive experience dealing with workplace injury claims and we only ever work for claimants, never for companies or insurers. We believe passionately that it is also our role to campaign for better, safer working conditions for employees in Scotland.
To get your work accident claim underway, just call Thompsons today on 0800 0891 331 or use our contact form to tell us a bit about your circumstances so that we can call you back at a time to suit you.