With any fall at work claim, clients ask “What are my rights after I have a fall at work?”
Any accident which occurs during the course of your everyday life can be traumatic. However, one which occurs at your place of work can have a profound effect on your attitude to your job. It can leave you feeling vulnerable and unprotected in your working life. In reality, you should instead feel comfortable and confident.
Not having apprehensions about returning to work.
Some fall at work negligence examples
If your employer is guilty of any of the following, we recommend that you seek professional advice regarding your rights to a claim. Specifically regarding the failure of an employer to:
- Maintain the necessary health and safety standards in the workplace.
- Provide adequate training.
- Supply the correct equipment in order to conduct your job safely and without injury.
With a fall at work, your rights remain the same as any other accident or incident within the workplace. That is if the fall is a direct result of your employer’s negligence.
Does Your Employer Use an Accident Book?
Even if you’re in a relatively small workplace, the employer needs to have an accident book on site. According to Citizens Advice, it’s imperative:
If the company or organisation you report your accident to has more than 10 employees, they must record it in an accident book. It’s a good idea to make sure it’s been done. You can ask your manager to check.
But even if you aren’t seeking maximum compensation for an injury at this moment, talk with management about this. Those environments we’d never deem to hazardous might still lead to a slip, trip or fall. If so, it’s best to be ready to follow proper procedures for an accident.
Trust in a fall at work claim solicitor
Seeking the guidance and advice of a professional solicitor, such as the accident-at-work specialists at The Compensation Experts, is crucial. We find it’s integral that every client understands their rights regarding a workplace fall. Taking legal advice as soon as you’re able means your solicitor can:
- best advise you on what evidence and information to collect in order to build a case;
- put your claim in a better position to succeed.
What Does a Fall at Work Claim Involve?
During a claim, you will need to be able to prove lawfully that the fall at work:
- was not your fault, and;
- that it was a direct result of your employer’s failure in meeting regulatory standards.
This is why it is crucial to take action as soon as you can after your fall, due to the lengthy process of legal proceedings.
If your employer denies culpability, then you have the right to begin litigation proceedings. This means the claim process is longer, but it might be necessary. Investigating as soon as possible is paramount in order to gain a court date for a claim within the time limit of three years.
Sectors that susceptible to slips and falls
Those who fell at work and make an accident claim can come from any line of work. Nevertheless, some industries are more fertile ground for a personal injury claim that others.
A 2017 UNISON paper offers some insights into some of the more dangerous sectors for someone who slipped and fell. If you work in these sectors, a personal injury solicitor may come in handy regarding a claim for compensation.
Catering is a high-risk area for STFs. Leaks and spills, poorly placed items, floors in poor condition, or ineffective or inadequate cleaning lead to STFs being the major cause of workplace incidents in catering. With sharp tools in use, hard surfaces, and plenty of hot liquids and surfaces; the consequence of an STF can be far greater than usual.
Office Environments and Education
Indeed, the office workplace is also a veritable tripping zone. For accident at work claims in education and offices, compact spaces with dense populations can get hazardous. Regarding such environments, suffering an injury (including head injuries) make anything possible. UNISON says this:
A slip or trip within an office environment can lead to a far more serious injury or death if, for example, you fall against a corner of a desk or down some steps or stairs. Within the education sector, structured timetables see large volumes of staff and pupils or students move around at the same time. (Thus) increasing the potential for slip and trip incidents.
These days, healthcare industries are particularly vulnerable for many reasons. Bear in mind that was the case even before COVID-19 became part of the everyday lexicon. But with urgent workers moving about briskly, yet at the same time co-existing with infirm & vulnerable patients moving at their own pace, slips, trips and falls are rampant.
Long term injuries could add insult to (another) injury, too. Says UNISON:
STFs are the main cause of accidents to workers and patients in the healthcare sector. (They) account for around 50% of serious injuries to employees.
We talk at length about what kinds of incidents constitute slips, trips or falls here. Now, from that same blog post,
For a workplace environment, a ‘slip’ constitutes whenever your feet lose grip on the surface you’re standing or walking on. This may be due to:
- wet floors;
- a recent polishing of the floor or;
- because a rug isn’t secure to the ground.
Trips come down to either uneven surfaces or ineffective lighting, causing an unintended spill on your part.
For example, your workplace has clutter all over the floor. For whatever reason, you stumble over and (making matters worse) injure yourself, too. In this hypothetical scenario, you’ve suffered a trip in the workplace that your employer would be liable for.
Finally, we come to the falls scenario. Here, we list a hypothetical fall example.
You’re using a small stepladder to help a colleague hang something on the office wall. However, the stepladder is wobbly and dangerous to use. As a result, either you or your colleague sustains an injury as a result. While this may seem inconsequential, it is worth remembering that even a fall from a few inches can cause nasty injuries.
What Can I Claim For With Slip and Fall Incidents?
You have the right to claim for loss of earnings because of time off work to recover from a slip, trip or fall. In a more serious case, this could involve a concussion, or possibly wounds that need additional time to heal. Perhaps you’ve lost a significant amount of income which statutory sick pay won’t adequately cover. Accordingly, you have every right to claim that money back.
You also have the right to claim money back for any expenses you accrue during your recovery time. This includes prescription costs, the transport costs when travelling to medical appointments or the hospital, and any general medical expenses needed after the fall. With this in mind, it’s important that you keep any and all receipts to prove these expenses and discuss them with your solicitor.
To further discuss your rights, speak to The Compensation Experts’ professional advice team. Reach out and see how we can help you start a claim.