Claiming compensation following an accident at work can seem like a tricky business. You might be asking yourself questions like 'am I really entitled to compensation for my injuries?', 'what will my work colleagues think of me for making a work accident claim?' and 'will I risk losing my job if I claim against my employer?' In fact, none of these issues should stop you from making the necessary enquiries into claiming for your accident at work.
If you are not sure that you are entitled to claim, a claims handling company can assess this for you. If you are worried about what your colleagues might think, consider the fact that you could be doing them a big favour by making their working environment a safer place. And it is illegal to dismiss an employee because they have made a claim, so there is no need to worry about losing your job.
Whatever your injuries, it is sensible to get free legal advice as soon as you can by calling a reputable claims company or claiming online. They will assess your claim for you for free and put you in touch with a specialist, local solicitor if you do have a valid claim against your employer. These are some of the questions you might be asked by a claims handler or legal professional who is trying to help you decide whether you should claim compensation.
1. Did the accident happen in the last three years?
This is an important question as the law in the UK states that you cannot initiate a compensation claim if the accident at work happened more than three years ago. As long as you start your claim within three years of the work accident, it doesn't matter if the claim itself runs over this period. The important thing is when the claim was started. There is an exception here - if you are suffering from an occupational illness, such as asbestosis or mesothelioma, which was caused exposure to chemicals, the exposure can date back many years or even decades since such illnesses can lie dormant for a very long time.
2. Was someone else to blame?
For a claim to be successful, it needs to be proven that the work accident was the fault, or partly the fault, of someone else. If you are not sure who was to blame then it is vital to seek professional legal advice to ascertain where the blame lies. Sometimes, an incident which may have seemed to be your fault, or the fault of one of your colleagues, can actually be traced back to unsafe working practices, for instance, and your employer may still be held accountable.
3. Did you suffer illness or injury as a result of the accident?
If the accident at work has caused you to be injured or to suffer from any illness, including psychological illnesses, and this has affected your life in some way, it is quite possible that you are entitled to compensation for your injuries and any monetary losses you have incurred as a result.