It is an employer’s duty to protect the health, safety and welfare of employees, including contractors and the self-employed, while on business premises or working for the business offsite. Employers must take steps to ensure the safety of employees. These steps include providing personal protective equipment – such as head protection (helmets) and eye protection (goggles) – to employees, and training employees to be safe in the workplace.
In addition to this, all hazards must be signposted as hazards. For example, chemical warning signs should be placed close to where acids will be used.
A breach in health and safety policy could lead to an accident. If this has happened to you, the first thing to remember is that the law is on your side. The Health and Safety Executive makes very clear the responsibilities of employers, and breaches in health and safety policy – and especially those that result in injury – are taken extremely seriously by the authorities.
What to do if you have been injured at work
You should seek legal advice immediately if you are thinking about making a claim. You can get free legal advice without obligation. It is your legal right to make a claim if you have been injured as a result of somebody else’s actions.
It is also important to point out that an employer is not legally able to punish you for making a claim against them. Indirect or direct discrimination arising out of a personal injury claim is illegal, and it can open up an employment tribunal, and these are always very costly. Therefore, it is in an employer’s best interests to accept a claim and to move on from it.
How much compensation could I be entitled to?
This depends very much on the extent of your injuries, and how your injuries have and will affect your life. The worse your injuries are, then generally speaking the more financial compensation you can demand from the other side. However, your settlement demand has to be fair and proportionate to the extent of your injuries in order to be accepted.
In addition to compensation for your injuries, you can also claim ‘special damages’, which is the compensation awarded for financial losses related to your injuries. If you have lost income because of your accident, then you can claim this back. The same goes for income support you may have lost. You can also claim back out of pocket expenses related to your accident, such as travel expenses and medical expenses. However, you will need to produce receipts for these to prove that you have been left out of pocket from your accident.