Warehouse Operative Receives £19k in Back Injury Claim

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This case study relates to the personal injury compensation claim of Robert Wilson from Airdrie, North Lanarkshire.

Mr Wilson sustained injury in an accident at work and his union referred him to Thompsons, so that our work accident solicitors to could make a claim on his behalf.

The background

The accident occurred on 29 October 2018, during the course of Mr Wilson's employment at Brakes Food Service, the food wholesaler, in Motherwell. He was employed as a warehouse operative.

The incident occurred as Mr Wilson had been taking a cage of products into the loading bay. He was wearing a high-vis jacket at the time of the accident.

A colleague who was driving a powered pallet truck crashed the truck into the cage. The impact caused the cage to strike Mr Wilson and push him backwards into a hand pallet truck. As he fell, his foot became caught on a fork of the truck and this caused him to twist awkwardly.

Mr Wilson suffered immediate pain and although he tried to carry on working, he was unable to complete his shift. At home he was suffering pain that radiated from his lower back up into his upper back and neck. He took painkillers.

The consequences

Following other back injuries sustained at work, Mr Wilson attended his GP. He was referred for physiotherapy through his employer's occupational health department.

Mr Wilson was unable to return to work for six months following the accident at work.

At the outset of the claim, the case was relatively close to time bar which meant Thompsons' personal injury solicitors had a limited amount of time to seek medical evidence to support the case. We therefore sought a medical report immediately from a consultant orthopaedic surgeon who advised that as Mr Wilson was having ongoing pain an MRI scan would be beneficial.

We arranged for Mr Wilson to undergo an MRI scan and this confirmed that he had underlying degenerative changes within his back.

The settlement

In the meantime, we intimated a claim to Mr Wilson's employer and liability was admitted prior to litigation. However, in the light of the impending time bar, we raised court proceedings in the All-Scotland Sheriff Personal Injury Court so that we could receive the findings of the MRI scan and the updated medical report.

The updated medical evidence confirmed that Mr Wilson had suffered an acute back strain for a period of six months. It also confirmed that the workplace accident had caused an acceleration in the underlying degenerative changes within his back by a period of two to three years.

On receiving the medical evidence, the defenders tendered an offer of £19,000 which we felt represented a very good offer based on the level of the medical evidence.

The personal injury compensation settlement was agreed 22 July 2022.

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