Employer negligence and claiming compensation

6

Accidents in the workplace can happen to anyone and often occur as a result of negligence on the part of the employer. Employers in the UK have a legal obligation to protect their workers whilst they are on site. Whatever type of job you do, you should be safe and working in an environment that is free from any dangers or hazards.

Health and safety regulations

Employers are responsible for the implementation and adherence to heath and safety laws and guidelines. If these guidelines are not followed through negligence, serious accidents can occur. On occasions, employers fail to implement health and safety regulations correctly, if at all. In such instances, the chance of an accident occurring in the workplace increases significantly.

Such accidents could be the result of employers not providing their employees with the right amount of training, the right guidance when it comes to using equipment or the right tools and clothing to wear whilst they are in the workplace.

If you have had an accident at work because your employer has not taken the necessary steps to protect you whilst you are working and has failed to follow health and safety rules and regulations, then you may be entitled to compensation. If health and safety hasn’t been followed then your employer will be found negligent and liable to pay compensation.

Get legal advice

If you think that your injuries are the result of negligence of your employer, then you should seek legal advice. Hiring a personal injury solicitor who specialises in work accidents would put you at an advantage. They will be able to advise and guide you through the processes involved in claiming for compensation and be able to tell you whether or not you have a strong case for compensation against your employers.

You will have to prove that your injuries are the result of health and safety laws not being properly enforced in the workplace and you will need to have medical records showing the details and extent of your injuries. Your solicitor will be able to tell you more about this and how you will go about claiming for compensation. It may seem daunting but with a good solicitor on hand you will feel very reassured.

Your compensation will cover any medical expenses, loss of earnings and even the impact that the accident might have had on your life. Each case is considered on an individual basis, so compensation may vary from case to case.

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

Leave a question

Your question will appear once approved and we'll answer it as soon as we can. Your email address will not be published, your name will, so feel free just to use a first name.

  1. As an employer what are my legal obligations following a work place accident that resulted in a death and also what are the duties on the individuals involved and the managers?

    • In a serious incident at work resulting in serious injuries or a fatality, the relevant authorities will investigate the matter (Police, HSE and RIDDOR). Your obligations as an employer is to fully cooperate with any such investigation and provide all relevant documentation requested (such as training records, maintenance records, insurance details etc).

      The individual Managers and business owner/Directors can face prosecution if it is shown that they failed in their duties to minimise the risk of such a serious incident.

  2. Hi Kevin.
    I have been on long term sick for over 10 years,yes that correct ,10 years,I was not called to any absence review meetings,until late 2016 ,that was 8 years after my accident,I did receive a compensation claim against them,Between 2016 and up to date I have only been to 3 absence review meetings,I have raised a grievance with them on their policy for long term sick leave and they did not have one up until a few weeks ago,at the meeting I had with them they said the did,which now has been proven that they lied.I lost my grievance as they upheld it but admitted that they could have had more communication with me .this has caused me sever stress and I am attending my doctor for it.i think the term is hyperarousal.can I make a claim against them as they should have a care of duty .

    • The query you cite is an employment law matter and as such, we are not able to offer qualified advice to you. We would recommend that you approach an employment law specialist at the earliest opportunity.

  3. Hi Ian,

    I am contacting you on behalf of a colleague who sustained an electric shock at work in May 2016, which knocked him over; he was medically checked and then sent home. The details are taken from the 8 page company Health and Safety report where they identify the catalogue of errors and root causes.
    I will try and keep the details to bullet points as this enquiry is more regarding employer negligence than the injury sustained by the colleague.
    1. The incident involved my colleague sustaining an electric shock from a water heater.
    2. The water heater was checked in 2013 by an independent electrical service company who identified an action coded as C2 ‘potentially dangerous, urgent remedial action required’. There is no clear record of this action being completed; further to this the fixed instillation inspection also indicated that the water heater did not have a Residual Current Device (RCD).
    3. On 28th April 2016 a staff member identified a water leak emanating from under the kitchen sink, through the water heater which had the cover tilting back with exposed wires. The staff member informed her line manager and together with the Front of House Manager checked the water heater and decided to switch off the power supply. This was also recorded electronically.
    4. On 29th April 2016 recorded data indicates that this work order was acted upon but sent to the wrong contractor email address due to a recent change of name by the contractor. However the (SLA) code was set at one day and it would have shown on the system the next day as a job not resolved and colour coded as red.
    5. Records indicate that once the time scale for the (SLA) has exceeded it highlights as red on the maintenance department system and this is reviewed on a weekly basis at the maintenance team meeting. A review took place on 3rd May 2016, but this was not highlighted as a priority.
    6. Company Health and Safety report identifies that the classification of the (SLA) code for the work order should have been assessed as urgent. The water heater should have been securely isolated, once a problem had been identified and a caution notice should be attached at the point of isolation.
    7. On 5th May 2016 the water heater had still not had any work carried out and the work order was outstanding. The monthly water heater check was due and engineer was tasked with the job. He started to test the water temperature and noticed that it was not heating, checked the water heater only to find it had been turned off from the switch inside the cupboard. He checked the heater visually did not notice anything out of place so he turned the switch back on and left intending to return an hour later after the water had heated up. He did not return due to other work priorities and the water heater was now live again. The incident occurred later that evening.

    There are other Health and Safety concerns but I appreciate this is already a lengthy email. The colleague only had one day off as he felt pressured by his line manager to return to work. He was offered £750.00 compensation, is this acceptable given the circumstances?

    Many thanks.

    • Kevin

      Thank you for telling us about your colleagues accident at work.

      There are two things I can say at this stage – i’m sure you can appreciate that I don’t know the full facts of the injury sustained and how that has affected your colleague.

      Firstly, I would say that he does have a very strong claim for compensation – this is further backed up by the fact that an offer of compensation has been made.

      Secondly, the offer – £750. Without knowing the full facts of the injury – how it has affected your colleague, whether there are ongoing problems such as pain, loss of movement or even psychological trauma etc, I can’t say if the offer is fair or not. If he has not been using the services of a specialist accident at work compensation solicitor, I would argue that he may well receive a higher/fairer offer if he were.

      Using a specialist solicitor ensures that the claimant receives the maximum value of settlement to which they are entitled and protects the claimant from dealing directly with an insurer who will be looking to settle the claim at the lowest possible tariff. Therefore, I would suggest that your colleague make an enquiry to us so that we can discuss this in detail and offer advice on the basis of knowing the full facts of the matter.

      Yours sincerely

      Ian

Direct2Compensation Personal Injury Claims

Speak with a claims expert

We're happy to answer any questions you might have, or let you know if you are eligible to claim. Just fill out the form below. You can also call us on 01225 430285.