Is any personal injury claimable?

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At Direct 2 Compensation towers, we get numerous personal injury accident claim enquiries. We’ve heard it all, the fall from a ladder, the whiplash from a rear end shunt, the slip on the wet floor, the lack of hazard warning signs, the blatant breaches of health and safety in workplaces. All claimable accidents in most cases in the world of Personal Injury compensation.

We’ve also had the opposite enquiries regarding completely unclaimable accident scenarios! We’ve genuinely had a personal injury enquiry for someone who slipped on a banana skin on the road (whether or not they were making a joke enquiry is debatable), we’ve had enquiries from people who have fallen through their own coffee tables when standing on them to change a light bulb (even a glass one – ouch!) and other ridiculous enquiries… I really could go on all day!

Just today, we had an enquiry from a parent who’s 6-year old son suffered a fractured jaw during a mini-rugby training session. The parent was understandably worried and upset by what had happened and they wanted to sue the Rugby Club in question. “They’ve got insurance” said the parent. However, it transpired that it was a genuine accident with no negligence. Two lads collided during a practice game of touch rugby when one of them tripped and a ‘bundle’ was caused with the lad fracturing his cheek bone. A nasty and painful injury no doubt, but we had to explain to the parent that the injury itself doesn’t constitute a personal injury claim. The parent struggled to understand that the insurers only pay out when their insured has acted in a negligent way. Rugby – along with other contact or physical sports are inherently dangerous and injuries are likely. The club were not negligent and just because the boy was injured, didn’t mean he could make a personal injury claim.

The moral of the story for those thinking of making a personal injury compensation claim is to ask whether the accident which lead to the injuries was caused by negligence? Could the accident have been avoided by using better practices and did the 3rd party have every reasonable chance to foresee such an accident?

In the case of the Rugby club, they had not been negligent and whilst they may foresee that injuries may occur, they could not avoid them – unless they abandoned the game of rugby! They had 1st aid trained people on duty and had planned out how to deal with injuries.

It’s interesting to see what people think will enable a personal injury claim, but contrary to the popularly medial portrayed myth of ‘claiming is easy’, ‘any injury is a claim’ and the ‘compensation culture’, it’s just not the case. It’s all about negligence.

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