Can I claim work accident compensation even if I have left the company?

48 questions have been answered below, why not ask your own?

Many people who contact us to discuss accident at work compensation have left the employer where they were injured and worry they won’t be able to claim because of this. Thankfully this is not the case, and as with all claims in the UK, the standard 3-year claim limitation period applies – regardless of whether or not you still work for the same employer.

Liability stays with the employer even if you leave

When someone is injured at work, a claim will succeed if the employer carries employer liability insurance and the claimant can be demonstrate that their employer was negligent and at fault for the accident.  As long as the employee was working for them at the time of the accident and details of the incident and injuries were reported to the right people at the time, it doesn’t matter if they then leave to work elsewhere or are currently unemployed, as they can still make a claim against the employer responsible for their injuries.  Liability remains with the employer and your ability to claim compensation doesn’t change – even if you change your job.

What will a claim against a former employer achieve?

If you were injured whilst working for a former employer, you have a right to pursue a claim for compensation as long as you do so within 3 years of the date of the accident and believe that the accident was not your fault. There are many reasons that people seek compensation after an accident at work, including anger and frustration, but most commonly due to a loss of income during the months after the accident if they cannot work whilst recovering from the injuries sustained.

Many people in the UK have doubts about claiming personal injury compensation after an accident. These doubts exist because of the negative myths and untruths that are commonly thrown around regarding the personal injury claims process and no win no fee. In accidents at work, people are also concerned that any claim they make could damage their employer and affect their colleagues and friends. But if it’s handled in the right way, this just isn’t the case.

 

48 questions have been answered below, why not ask your own?

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Questions & Answers


  1. ursula

    I was diagnosed with carpal tunnel syndrome 3 years ago due to repetitive work on 15th of feb both my wrist give on me the pain was to much now I have nerve damage in both wrist my seniors in my hands are not working to well I’m going back to work tonight for only 4 hours out of 14 hour shifts try an see if I can do the work again

    Reply
    • Ian Morris

      As your diagnosis was 3 years ago, if you have not already made a claim for compensation, you are unfortunately now out of limitation and cannot now start a claim for compensation.

      Reply
  2. Jokatama Ravono

    I got injured at work over 3 years ago can I still claim even though I’m still working at the same place?

    Reply
  3. Nancy

    Hello, I was injured at work in late 2019 when a metal bar fell and hit me from height. I resigned after this and haven’t earned nearly as much money since due to the physical and mental impact. I have claimed benefits and done some part-time work. Am I able to claim for the fact that I now earn much less? Would benefits count as earnings? Thanks

    Reply
    • Ian Morris

      We can help you to make a No Win No Fee claim for personal injury compensation for the injuries you sustained at work. It may prove harder to claim loss of income for the period after you resigned from the employer, but our specialist Solicitors would certainly look to recover the maximum possible compensation for your injuries and all appropriate loss of income.

      Reply
  4. Luke

    Hi,

    I have been signed off work since November 2019 due to a repetitive strain injury of some sort which I’m still trying to sort out with physio and I have also had 2 steroid injections in my elbow and will probably need more. My employer is making me redundant on medical grounds. Do I have any case for compensation? Cause of my injury is excessive use of heavy vibration machinery. They do issue health & safety meeting etc to tell you the do’s and don’ts but since beginning my job in 2016 as a gas engineer we never received any training on how to use certain tools apart from learning via watching the person you get paired up with but I’m not sure if that’s enough to secure compensation for my on going issues that I have to live with now due to poor management and over use of certain machines etc.

    Hope to hear from you to advice.

    Kind regards
    Luke

    Reply
    • Ian Morris

      The lack of official training in the use of certain tools and machinery is something that certainly opens the door to success in pursuit of a claim for compensation. Employers are obliged to provide adequate training and your employers failure to do so is likely to be seen as negligence. We would very much like to further investigate this matter for you and make a claim for compensation.

      Reply
  5. David

    Hi my name is Dave can I make a claim from my old employer I got made redundant and I fell 3 times at work I told my boss he should have put it in the book but I didn’t seek medical attention but since I’ve left my back and hip is killing me now I’m going to my docs on Monday to see if they can give something my brother said I won’t be able to claim anything thanks

    Reply
    • Ian Morris

      If your injuries happened within the past 3 years, you can make a claim. The lack of accident book record may be a problem as there could be a lack of evidence to support your claim. Do you have any other way of evidencing your accidents? In this case, do you know if any former colleagues would act as witnesses? Do you have copies of text message exchanges or emails between you and the employer where you have mentioned the accidents?

      Reply
  6. Lucy Ashford

    Hello, I worked in a school for 9 years as a lunchtime assistant and I finally left in September 2020. For several years I had to lift heavy tables and pack them away each day, and also spend a long time stood bending over a trolley which wasn’t high enough, scraping trays. This left me a back problem – damaged facet joints is one of the diagnoses I’ve been given. Over the years I have seen the doctor several times, had treatment from an osteopath, and had physio and have spent thousands on acupuncture, none of this treatment has solved my injury. Since last July I finally resorted to medication which the doctor was happy to prescribe for me. I believe I will have to take this for life now, and although it doesn’t completely alleviate the pain, it makes it bearable. This situation with my back now limits which jobs I can apply for – obviously retail would be out of the question as lifting boxes in a shop would not be possible, and I would have to declare the injury. I am 52 years old, so could potentially be stuck with this problem for up to 40 years. Do you think this is something I could claim compensation for or not?

    Reply
    • Ian Morris

      There is certainly the potential to pursue a claim against the employer. The key issue we need to consider before going further is whether you are able to act or whether you are statute barred. Any claimant MUST bring their claim within 3 years of the onset of symptoms or within 3 years of the date at which they should have known that the symptoms were related to their work.

      Reply
      • Lucy Ashford

        Ok thanks. I think it’s probably 4/5 years since it started so I guess it’s too late now. Only just occurred to me that I could have done something s out it. Conspiracy of fear of losing your job kept everyone quiet!

        Reply
        • Ian Morris

          You could check with your GP surgery as to when you first presented with any symptoms related to this injury. If that is within the last 3 years, you could seek to make a claim.

          Reply
  7. Bee

    I slipped and fell at work in June 2018. I still have problems with my left leg ever since. Is it too late to Sue my employer because I have 4to 5months before its 3years since the incident happened. I left the company in August 2020.

    Reply
    • Ian Morris

      It does not matter that you no longer work for the employer and there is still enough time for us to help you start your claim for compensation – but only just enough time, so contact us asap! After a quick telephone conversation with us, one of our specialist Solicitors will call you to discuss your accident and claim in more detail and get the claims process open.

      Reply
  8. Beverley Patrick

    Can I make a claim against a previous employer. I have been having occipital headaches for around 4 years. I used to push heavy equipment which I believe has caused this to happen. I was a support worker at the time and we did constantly tell the employee that the equipment especially the hoist was quite heavy to push. They changed the hoist but did not change the other equipment.

    Reply
    • Ian Morris

      We do help support workers claim compensation quite frequently, but unfortunately it would seem that you are outside of any claim limitation period. Any claim must be made within 3 years of the onset of symptoms and you mention that you have suffered with symptoms for 4 years now.

      Reply
  9. Anja

    When COVID happened, I’ve been on furlough April- August. I then got redundant with 4 weeks notice. That means that the notice finished and I left the company on the 4th of September. On the 15th in August I had a car accident (not related to work) and I broke my wrist and couldn’t find a job until the cast was taken off. That saying, I was unemployed with no income for two months. When the HR manager saw me when I was grabbing my stuff 04/09 she went speechless when noticed my hand. That got me thinking. Can I claim anything against that workplace?

    Reply
    • Ian Morris

      There would appear to be no obvious way of claiming compensation from your employer. The fact that you have been made redundant is obviously upsetting, but an employer can legally make redundancies so long as they follow due process.

      In terms of your hand injury in the car accident, you could make a claim for compensation for the injuries sustained so long as you were not at fault in the accident. If you would like to discuss making a claim for road traffic accident compensation, please call us on 01225430285.

      Reply
  10. Toby

    On 25th October 2019 I fractured my elbow whilst at work. I was an events manager and Brewery tap manager in south Shropshire. The injury occurred when I was instructed to load a van of items to go to an event outdoors. The weather that afternoon was very bad and was raining heavily. My employer asked me to load heavy goods onto a van by carrying them or using a forklift by myself. I expressed my concerns and felt it was not safe however they persisted that I continued by myself. As I got off the forklift truck in the brewery, I slipped on the floor and fell backwards hitting my elbow directly on the concrete floor. This floor is located within the brewery stock room and was/is in very poor condition. I was provided with no safety footwear and nothing to protect myself whilst doing this. I was extremely lucky that my head did not hit the floor or the circumstances could have been much worse. An ambulance was called but they made the decision I was ok to travel with a family member to hospital. Following an X-ray I was judged to have fractured my elbow and was in a full length arm plaster. The DR expressed that my injury was down to the unsafe floor and my footwear not being safe after being in wet conditions. Still now I am having difficulty with this elbow. I am unable to rotate that arm as much as my other arm and the same with bending it. I still have pain in my elbow when lifting or extending my arm. It has certainly effected my life since the injury happened. I’m enquiring as to whether this would be grounds to claim against my employer? Please note that I have since left the company.

    Reply
    • Ian Morris

      This is certainly a matter that you should pursue and we would be more than happy to help you make a claim for the injury to your arm and the long term consequences caused by your former employers negligent approach to health and safety in the workplace.

      The fact that you have since left the employer is not relevant to whether or not you can pursue a claim and will have no bearing on the outcome.

      Please call us on 01225430285 for further help. Alternatively, you can start your claim for compensation on our website or make direct contact with us via email at justice@direct2compensation.co.uk

      Reply
  11. Jess

    I left my job because of burnout, which was caused by hostile environment – I reported bullying and colleagues making comments about my medical appointments to my manager, who assured me he’d get them to HR but he didn’t. I had a surgery due to my condition in the Meantime and returned to same hostile environment where the bullying became more subtle as the colleagues were”talked to”. 2 months after returning from my surgery I quit because I developed nervous ticks and anxiety and cried at work everyday. The employee was happy to pay my notice period to see me go. A year later I’m just getting better, unemployed and on ESA- I’m finally realising how bad I’ve been played – I worked for them for 4,5 years and was tossed out once used. They didn’t pay anything beyond notice pay and didn’t provide a lawyer either. What are my chances of suing them? They’re a big corporate and of course new how to use an employee in distress.

    Reply
    • Ian Morris

      Depending on when you left the company, you may be able to pursue a claim. Employment law matters have a short claim limitation period of 3 months (for claims such as constructive or unfair dismissal). However, claims for personal injury compensation – such as work related stress compensation – have a limitation period of 3 years.

      Reply
  12. lacey

    Injured my hand 3 years ago. Left my job this year but never put my accident in the work injury book. Can I still claim

    Reply
    • Ian Morris

      If the injury was more than 3 years ago, you cannot now make a claim as you must pursue any claim within 3 years of the date of the injury.

      Reply
  13. Lyn

    I had my arm crushed in cyclone on powder coating machine it closed on my forearm crushing just below my elbow, I was rushed to a&e and have been back another 4 times and i’ve got to have nerve test as lost partial feeling in fingers and all down forearm. I am still in pain and limited use of arm. I attend physio but since I returned after hospital signed me off i’ve been treated very unfairly and I want to leave. I have put claim in but will leaving affect my claim?

    Reply
    • Ian Morris

      Leaving your employer will have no impact on your claim in terms of the matter succeeding or failing.

      Reply
  14. John

    Hi just enquiring if I could make a claim somehow
    I have my own business and employ myself and get paid monthly for work I go and do on top of running the business
    I am a fence erector and have recently been told I’ve got a compressed spine and peripheral neuropathy and may not be able to work again
    It all stems from the repetition of digging the holes constant day in day out would I be able to claim against my company employee liability insurance
    Cheers
    John

    Reply
    • Ian Morris

      As you are responsible for managing the workload, training provision and the physical carrying out of the manual work, you are also responsible for the management of the Health and Safety element of your work. You can not claim against yourself and appear to have no party against which you could pursue a claim.

      Reply
  15. Cathjones

    I’ve got a bad back leg due to me carrying post bags for many years. I no longer work for Royal Mail, could I still make a claim?

    Reply
    • Ian Morris

      If your symptoms developed within the past 3 years you could then look at whether or not your employer was in anyway negligent.

      Royal Mail would be liable if they had failed to provide you with the correct equipment, training or failed to ensure that weights to be lifted did not exceed the safe limits.

      Reply
  16. vanessa

    I am a teacher.
    I was injured by a child at my workplace which has resulted in my finger staying crooked.

    When the injury occurred I didn’t take any leave other than going to the hospital and I didn’t claim for compensation.
    I was worried about the effect it would have on my job.
    I am leaving where I work so can I make a claim?

    Reply
    • Ian Morris

      You can make a claim as long as the injury was sustained less than 3 years ago. Whilst the law affords you a period of 3 years to make a claim, the reality is that if there is less than 6 months of that 3 year period remaining, it becomes increasingly less likely that a Solicitor will be able to take the matter on a No Win No Fee basis.

      If you believe that the injury could have been avoided if the employer had carried out appropriate actions or if the employer was negligent in anyway, you may succeed with a claim.

      Reply
  17. Nikki H

    I have an ongoing claim with my previous employers due to an injury during a team building game at work. They came back and denied the claim however I have inside information that they are just doing this in the hope that I will go away as they do believe they are liable under vicarious liability. My lawyer has gone back to them two weeks ago to say that we are not accepting their response. Should they take a long time to reply or do you think they will deny this again until we take them to court?

    Reply
    • Ian Morris

      The ‘inside information’ you cite may or may not have any credibility and it cannot be counted upon. However, it is not uncommon for a defendant to deny liability in the first instance, even if they are of the view that they may have to admit eventually, in the hope that it will be enough to defend their client against the claim made.

      In your case, as your Solicitor has returned to the defendant to refute their denial, you will have to wait for the defendant to elaborate on their defence before your Solicitor is able to evaluate whether or not their defence would hold up in court.

      Reply
  18. Anonymous

    I left a job about one month ago, i was fixing pallets. There was a line which was jamming pallets all the time, it’s been reported not only by me, but there was no reaction from managers side. Right now i have problem with shoulder and neck, because we still needed to do numbers even with broken machinery. Can i still apply for personal injury?

    Reply
    • Ian Morris

      UK law enables any person injured at work to make a claim against their employer if their injury was caused through machine fault or lack of training etc – even if that person has since left the company and no longer works for them.

      Reply
  19. Sue

    I worked for local government in Western Australia as a Parks and Gardens, using chemicals to spray weeds for about 8 years. There was no training on how to use it until at the end OHS was brought it then we were taught. I left that job and ended up doing a chemical course and found that what we as workers were doing was the wrong way of doing things as we all were told at some point in our time that the chemical Glyphosate was not harmful in which I have now found out it is. I found out that it can affect you later down the track. I have a few health symptoms that I’m getting checked out now, so I want to know if my health issues are to be related to this can I make a claim even though I have left their employment?

    Reply
    • Ian Morris

      Given your location in Australia, we cannot advise you. Under UK law you could possibly have a claim but we do not know Australian law and as such suggest that you address this query to a specialist Solicitor working in the jurisdiction in which such a claim would need to be brought.

      Reply
  20. Rebecca

    Can I make a claim if I left the company feb 2017? I had developed Crohn’s disease 2011 due to ongoing the work related stress and anxiety. This got worse and worse and I coped for years yet then had seizures due to exhaustion and work worries and pr sure and finally to top it all off I had non direct threats made from staff who wanted to stab me and openly put me down in front of my team. I had no back up from management at all as everyone denied it and I was the one then causing hassle and problems for raising it. None of them admited to it, managers did nothing and as there were redundancies being offered in the building (not my direct department) I asked for it and was given it due to my health so I took redundancy and the payout and focussed on getting better. I was an emotional wreck and in physical pain for months, years I’m fact. This still gets to me and what I went through has to be considered. It made me ill and now have disability for life. Causing me a lot of difficulty now obtaining a stable income.
    Now I am mentally stronger and feel able to fight this. I had no one supporting me and can provide medical evidence to show the conditions I developed and support needed, including psychological counselling. As I left in Feb 2017 Do I have a case?

    Reply
    • Ian Morris

      The fact that you have left an employer would have no impact on any claim you were to subsequently make against the employer. The most important factor in any claim for compensation is being able to demonstrate that another party (employer or organisation) has been negligent and that their negligence has lead to you suffering an injury or illness.

      In your case, if you believe that your employer was negligent towards your Health and Safety, you can seek to make a claim for compensation.

      Reply
  21. stephen webster

    Hi, i was getting out of a firms vehicle at work when i stood on a bolt in the technicians parking area and went over on my ankle. This was last October. Went to doctors in October 2017, he said i had damaged ankle. Since then i have been on the sick for 3 months March to May 2018 as i could hardly walk taking pain killers every day. Retired from work at the end of may 2018 due to not been able to work because of it. Had two injections in my right ankle, one in May and one in August they have not helped, still painful, also affecting my hip now. Next step is ankle fusion, there is no alternative. I was a service driver for Lookers plc having to get in and out of vans all day, some very tightly parked causing twisting of the ankle. Could i still put a claim in? if so how do i go about it?

    Reply
    • Ian Morris

      Given the severity of the injury you sustained and the huge impact it has and is having on your day-to-day life, I think it would be a wise move to make a claim for compensation.

      Reply
  22. Jacob Bates

    Hello, I was hurt on the job. I was pushed over by a pallet of product that was poorly shrink wrapped. It knocked me down between a semi loading dock and the semi trailer. My leg was completely impaled by a piece of metal. I was not treated well by the workman’s comp adjuster. They did pay for my ambulance bill and doctor bills but I never inquired about a personal injury claim. Here over the last year my leg is now starting to cause me cramps, aches and pain. My leg is also still bruised and badly scarred 2 1/2 years later! I am no longer with the company and am wondering if it’s to late to do something about my leg with care and treatment?

    Reply
    • Ian Morris

      UK law allows any person injured whilst working in the UK a claim limitation period of 3-years in which they can take action. In your case, it would appear that you should be able to pursue a claim against your former employer for your injuries and losses.

      Reply
  23. Jason norman

    Hi there. I was working for a primary school when I was poisoned with salt for 6 months accused having obscene pictures on my laptop which were never there, of which resulted in me suffering severe depression. Can I still claim..

    Reply
    • Ian Morris

      Jason

      Thank you for contacting us. Your situation of suffering mental health problems because of the negligent actions of your employer is something that you may be able to pursue a claim for compensation for. However, as I am sure you will appreciate, the situation in which you find yourself isn’t a straightforward one as gaining evidence to support the allegations you make may not be a simple process. It goes without saying that your employer will use the 2nd allegation you raise (improper content on your PC) to discredit you should they have to defend any claim and when it comes to pursuing a No Win No Fee claim for compensation, this could make the risks of failing with the case higher.

      No Win No Fee claims will be pursued by us and our specialist injury compensation solicitors if the criteria of the claim scenario passes a strict risk assessment protocol. In simple terms, the specialist injury compensation solicitors that we use need to be of the view that any claim has a greater chance of succeeding than failing in order for them to be able to pursue the matter on a No Win No Fee basis. It is obvious that a No Win No Fee solicitor will only be able to charge their fees if they win a claim, so they need to be as sure as they can that they have a strong claim to pursue. Of course, there is always a risk with all claims and this is taken in to account within the risk assessment protocol I mentioned earlier.

      We would certainly be happy to get you in touch with one of our specialist solicitors as it is only by them asking the relevant questions and then being able to properly assess the strengths or weaknesses of any enquiry that they can offer expert advice and let you know if you have a viable claim for compensation.

      I hope that this response helps you and we look forward to helping you get some advice from one of our expert solicitors.

      Reply
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