In many cases, individuals who have become ill through coronavirus have recovered well, and most have experienced only mild symptoms. But for those who have been severely affected by COVID-19, the effects of the illness have often been devastating.
If you contracted COVID-19 at work or in a situation where someone had a duty of care to keep you safe from the risks associated with coronavirus, you may be able to make a claim for compensation to cover your financial losses and provide for any future loss.
If one of your family members has died as a result of COVID-19 in a situation in which they should have been protected from the coronavirus, sadly, it is unlikely that there will be a Fatal Accident Inquiry into their death. At Thompsons in Scotland, we believe this is a terrible injustice and we are here to help you make a civil claim.
It is now established that the effects of COVID-19 on some patients may be debilitating and chronic; the condition is known as Long Covid. To find out more about making a claim if you are suffering from Long Covid, see our page on Long Covid – Your Rights.
Thompsons Solicitors in Scotland is currently handling the civil cases for a number of people affected by COVID-19. Our COVID-19 Case Types page provides details of some of their circumstances.
Who can I claim against?
Coronavirus was identified by the Government as a "serious and imminent threat to public health" in February 2020. When you go out to work or visit a public place, your employer or the organisation that manages the public space has a duty of care to keep you safe. If they fail in that duty they can be held responsible for your losses.
For example, if your employer failed to protect you from exposure to the coronavirus, perhaps because you weren't provided with Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) or the PPE provided was not adequate for the level of exposure you experienced, then it is likely you will have a claim.
Similarly, if your employer did not follow the guidance on lockdown, social distancing or providing increased hygiene measures, and in all likelihood you contracted COVID-19 as a result, you may also be able to make a claim.
If you contracted COVID-19 while in any situation where you would reasonably have expected to be protected from risk, such as at a doctor's surgery or while attending hospital, then you may be able to make a claim.
Talk to Thompsons on 0800 0891 331 about your circumstances and we can give you the most up-to-date legal advice.
My family member contracted COVID-19 because I was exposed at work, can they make a claim?
If your employer failed to make reasonable efforts to provide you with the right PPE, training and processes to keep you safe from exposure, then your family members may be able to make a claim for compensation if they have suffered financial loss as a result of contracting COVID-19 from exposure to you.
Talk to Thompsons today for more information.
What can I claim for?
Similar to other occupational illness claims, you may be able to claim sums for the following:
- Pain and suffering – also known as solatium
- Loss of wages – If you have been unable to work because of illness; including any lost overtime or bonuses
- Help provided to you by family members – if they have provided care for you and carried out tasks that you would normally have undertaken.
- Other financial losses – depending on how your life is affected by the effects of COVID-19 in the future, such as any organ damage or continued respiratory problems, there may be associated ongoing costs which you can claim for.
I am self-employed and contracted COVID-19 on site, can I claim?
As a contractor or self employed person, you are owed the same duty of care while on site as employees and members of the public, so if you have contracted COVID-19 through failings at the place you were working you can make a claim against the individual or organisation that runs the site or workplace.
Some self-employed workers believe there is a need to provide wage slips in order to make a claim, but this is not the case. As long as you can demonstrate that you have been unable to fulfil a work commitment because you contracted COVID-19, we should be able to make a claim on your behalf.
Thompsons Solicitors in Scotland
As solicitors we are committed to ensuring the people of Scotland have full access to justice if they have been affected by coronavirus and COVID-19.
If you would like advice about your legal rights and to find out if you could make a civil claim for compensation, you can Talk to Thompsons today.
Call 0800 0891 331 or fill in our online claim form so we can call you back to discuss your circumstances.