Injuries in the Work Place | We Can Help You
Work Injury Claims
Have you had an injury in your Work Place? If you have any questions, Talk to us today, we are here to help.
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How can I Claim for an Injury in the Workplace?
If you were involved in an accident at work that wasn’t your fault, you could be entitled to pursue a personal injury case. You should know your rights and what your options are. If an employer fails to provide a safe environment, systems or equipment and you are injured as a result, you could have a valid claim. If an employer neglects their legal responsibilities, they could be putting workers and customers at risk while on duty. Common places work injuries occur include: office environments, building sites, restaurants, shops, warehouses, factories or driving for work.
Your Employer’s Duty of Care
It is an employers duty to protect staff and inform them about health and safety procedures. Employers must carry out regular risk assessments in the work place inside and out. They must ensure the health and safety of employees and visitors. This includes providing first aid equipment and facilities. Employees must also take reasonable care over their own health and safety. A work accident usually involves faulty equipment or substandard conditions of a premises or working environment. These kind of incidents ideally should be avoided or prevented. It’s a legal obligation for all employers to have a duty of care to ensure that work premises and work policies are managed and carried out safely.
Reporting the Accident
Employers have a legal responsibility to report certain accidents and incidents, and in some instances pay the employee statutory sick pay or contractual sick pay and give them time off because of the work related accident. If you’ve been involved in a work related accident it’s a good idea to make sure the accident has been reported too. Your employer must report any injury that prevents an employee from doing their normal work for more than three days.
At Synnott Lawline our team of dedicated, experienced solicitors specialise in helping people to bring a claim for injuries and illnesses that have happened at work. We endeavour to make sure you get the best legal advice possible and given access to the appropriate support services to recover from your injuries or ill-health. We aim to give you good, solid advice in plain English throughout your claim, so you will always know what’s happening.
5 Tips – What to do if you’ve had an injury in a work environment
However apprehensive you may feel, the first thing to do if you have sustained any injury in your work place, is to notify your management team / employer of the incident. Ensure you report where and how the accident occurred with as much detail and accuracy as possible.
If you’ve had any type of injury in work, seek medical attention as soon as possible to ensure your injuries are dealt with. Keep an accurate record of all medical receipts and reports. Primarily with the first GP / Hospital visit make sure you provide as much detail about the accident and how it occurred. These medical records are often requested by defendants while the case is ongoing.
Where possible keep a diary of events from the date of accident and any related sequence of events. This diary may include dates and expenses for GP / Doctor visits due to the injuries sustained from the accident. Also keep a record of any other expenses such as loss of income or travel expenses.
Keep photos of scene of accident and / or your injuries sustained. Maintain contact details of any witnesses or co-workers who were present or involved in the accident. Your solicitor may need to contact parties present or involved at a later stage as defence often request this.
In some instances an employer will give the employee time off work to recover and pay the statutory sick pay or contractual sick pay.
What is My Employers Legal Responsibility?
It is the legal responsibility of your employer to also report your accident be it mild or severe. An injury that prevents an employee from doing their normal work for more than three days must be reported. You are entitled to receive a copy of this report for your own records. Ensure this is a fair and true record of accident details.
What type of Workplace Accident Can I Claim For?
There are a large number of different workplace accidents you could be involved in, ranging from minor to catastrophic and sometimes fatal. Workplace industry sectors and environments where accidents commonly occur include the following but is not exclusive to:
- Building And Construction Site Accidents
- Manual Handling jobs
- Exposure To Chemicals
- Falling From Scaffolding Faulty Equipment
- Dangerous Machinery
- Gas Leak Exposure
- Asbestos Exposure
- Injuries From Slips And Trips
- Faulty Safety Equipment
- Faulty Work Equipment
- Falling From Scaffolding
- Faulty Equipment
- Dangerous Machinery
- Co-Worker Errors
- Crush Accidents
- Transport And Storage units
- Factory or Warehouse Accidents
- Tractor And Forklift Trucks Injuries
- Substandard Vehicle and Transport Safety
- Load Securing
- Dangerous Road Side jobs
- High risk work environments: Army, Gardai
- Emergency Service Workers
Construction Sector Accidents
By its very nature, building and construction sites are a high risk industry to work in. Health and Safety (HSA) regulates this sector, and so companies are legally bound to provide safe and secure working environments inside and out, and for machinery and vehicles too. However, if these safety measures are neglected, it can lead to serious and even life-changing accidents.
Office Work Place Accidents
The office working environment can also be a dangerous place. Accidents occur due to slippery surfaces, poor working environments, faulty electrics, insufficient training or poorly set up work stations. Common office-based accidents are slips, trips and falls, repetitive strain injuries, as well as eye strain, migraines and more
What is an Unsafe Working Condition?
According to HSA (Health and Safety Authority) statistics, in Ireland, the main incidents of work-place injuries (non fatal) occur in manual handling, trips, slips and falls. The industry sectors with the most hazardous work environments and highest injury rate includes: Construction, Agriculture and Fishing.
Annually, over 7500 injuries are reported to the HSA. Approximately 95% of these injuries, occur in the work place. And from this, manual handling-related injuries account for roughly 30% of the injuries (non fatal). Workers also reported sustaining injuries from aggression, fright, shock and violence.
How much Compensation will I get for my Work Place Injury?
The amount you will be entitled to will depend on:
- The seriousness of the injury
- Short or long term effects from the injury
- Loss of earnings
- Loss of potential earnings
Work Related Accidents that an Employer must Report
- Back injury from lifting and manual handling
- Injuries from slips and trips
- Injuries due to lack of training or safety equipment
- Faulty work equipment
- Repetitive strain injury
- Vibration white finger
- Forklift truck accidents
- Injury from another employees mistakes
- Road accidents whilst delivering goods
- Construction site accidents
What are the Health and Safety Regulations in the Work Place?
Preventing back injuries is a major workplace safety challenge. Employers are required by law to adhere to strict Health and Safety regulations. It is their duty to provide a safe working environment for all staff members in all areas of the work place inside and outside. No 100% solution has been found for totally eliminating back injuries caused in the work place although it is felt that a portion can be prevented by effective control programs.
Work related spinal injuries can be caused by lifting, placing, carrying and holding manual materials. An accident which results in a temporary or permanent back injury can also be the result of an unsafe environment or substandard machinery or tools. If you have suffered or are suffering from a back or spinal injury due to a work related accident you may be entitled to pursue a personal injury claim.
Instruct Your Solicitor To Take Care of your Case
By instructing your solicitor to make your claim on your behalf, the potential for confrontation is reduced which thus enables both parties to get on with their lives while a personal injury case is pending and ensuring the best result for you. If you’ve been the victim of a back injury, contact us now to get your Workplace Accident Claim started. Our specialised solicitors will assist you with any legal issues and queries you may have in relation to your Back injury claim.
How long do I have to Start my Claim?
You have two years from the date of your accident within which to make a claim after which time your case will become statute barred. If you have any legal questions or wish to start your claim, please do not hesitate to contact our dedicated and experienced team of solicitors who will be more than happy to talk you through the whole process and answer any questions that you may have. Contact us 7 days a week by Phone: 01 453 7890 Email: email@example.com or fill out our Call Back Form.
Got a question about Starting a Claim for Personal Injury or Medical Negligence?
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How is PIAB involved in my Claim and Why?
All Personal Injury Cases by Irish Law, bar Medical Negligence must first be processed through PIAB (Personal Injury Assessment Board). Once you have instructed us to commence proceedings for your case, we handle all dealings with PIAB on your behalf. Our legal team will also ensure that PIAB adheres to any time limits that the case may have and deal with all queries in relation to your PIAB Application.
In order for our firm to put your claim through PIAB we must first get Your Medical Report. We obtain this medical report from your treating doctor outlining all injuries sustained by you as a result of your accident. This report is very important as PIAB will base their assessment of your claim solely on the contents of your medical report along with a 2nd Report from an Independent Medical Practitioner. We will then send a copy of this report to you along with an application form (Form A) which must be signed by you in order for us to process your claim with the Injuries Board.
How Long Does it take for My Case to go Through PIAB?
If PIAB is going ahead with an assessment, it has 9 months from the date of application to make an assessment. During this time period PIAB arranges for the claimant to be assessed by an independent doctor / medical expert in order to take up a medical legal report. Once the Board is in receipt of your case documentation (which we organise on your behalf) the completed Schedule of Special Damages, Certificate of Loss of Earnings (if appropriate) and the Medical Report, they will proceed to make an assessment.
- We (the Solicitor) will be notified in writing of the award being made by the Board.
- You (the claimant) are given 28 days to decide whether or not you wish to accept the award.
- The respondent is given 21 days within which to make the same decision.
- If both parties accept the assessment then an ‘Order to Pay’ will issue and your cheque is usually requisitioned within 6 weeks.
Can I Make my Own PIAB Application?
If you have already made an application to the Board yourself without using the services of a solicitor – we will be happy to arrange a consultation to look at the paperwork and advise as to whether or not we believe that the Board has made a fair assessment of your claim.
What Happens if I Reject the PIAB Offer?
If one or both parties reject the Assessment, PIAB will issue an Authorisation, allowing you (the claimant) to issue Court Proceedings. Even if court proceedings are issued, this does not necessarily mean that the claimant/plaintiff will end up in court. If we do end up issuing proceedings on your behalf, in the majority of cases the claim settles before going to trial.
What happens if I Accept the PIAB Offer?
If you are willing to accept The PIAB Assessment and the offer of compensation, provided the other side are willing to pay it, then this is the end of the matter. However, if either you or the other side does not accept the Assessment, then the claim will proceed under the former system of Court Litigation.
It should be noted that PIAB does not award any costs, so your Legal Fees must come out of the figure assessed by PIAB. The foregoing is a very brief synopsis of the workings of PIAB and, there are all sorts of diverse situations which can and do arise. Your solicitor will fully advise you in relation to your particular circumstances.
Will my Case Go to Court?
We deal with every case on the basis that it may end up in Court – in reality cases don’t always go to court and usually settle beforehand. If the defendants Insurance Company has not offered enough or has made no offer on your case, then your case may go to court. However, if any offer has been made, you (the claimant) decide whether or not to accept it. Your Solicitor will give you advice in relation to accepting or rejecting the offer, but the ultimate decision is yours. If no offer is made, then this indicates that the other side is reasonably confident of defending the case.
Why would my Case go to Court?
Cases go to court for two reasons, either the Defendant has not offered enough Compensation or the Defendant has made No offer. If an offer is made, then it is you who decides whether or not to accept the offer. Your Solicitor will provide advice in relation to any offer, but the ultimate decision is yours. If no offer is made, then this would indicate that the other side is reasonably confident of successfully defending the case. In such event your options will be clearly outlined to you.
What Happens if my Case does go to Court?
If your case does go to court, there is no reason for concern about appearing in court as your your solicitor will lead you through your evidence. You simply answer all questions to the best of your ability. And your legal team will be there to support you throughout the whole case. You are firstly examined by your own Barrister, following which, the Defendant’s Barrister will cross-examine and attempt to illicit details from you. These questions may be favourable to the Defendant’s case. The Judge may also have questions.
3 Tips For Going to Court
- When arriving for your case, it is important that you dress in a manner which shows proper respect to the Court.
- If being questioned in court, Try to avoid giving hasty or confused replies.
- If you are not sure of the answer to any question, you should say so, Your legal team are there to support you.
Do I need to bring a Witness to Court?
After completion of your evidence, the evidence of any other witnesses is heard. This may include a Medical Practitioner. Their evidence is usually admitted as a Medical Report handed into the Judge. Other witnesses may include an engineer and any person who witnessed the event.
How does the Judge reach their Decision on Liability?
When all the witnesses have been heard, and Counsel has made any relevant points to the Court, the Judge makes his/her decision, more often than not on the day, but on occasion, they may postpone the judgement to another day. The judge delivers their decision on liability, and if in favour of the Plaintiff will make an Award of Damages as Compensation.
Can a Child Start a Claim?
If you are the parent or guardian of an injured child, or if you were injured when you were under 18 and your injuries were caused by someone else, you may be entitled to claim compensation.
In the eyes of Irish law, a person under the age of 18 is considered to be a “Minor” and therefore cannot engage the services of a solicitor. However, the Parent or Guardian of the child can bring a personal injury action on their behalf. A claim can be made on behalf of a child by a “Next Friend” at any point up to the child’s 18th birthday. The injured person then has a further 2 years, until the date of their 20th birthday, to start their own compensation claim. The Next Friend (typically a parent or guardian) acts as an agent for the child and the nominated solicitor will deal directly with them.
What are the Legal Costs when claiming for a Child?
What Happens to the Minor’s Compensation when they reach the age of 18?
Once the minor has reached the age of 18 they can apply to have the Award released from Court. In the majority of cases the figure lodged will have increased as it accrues interest over time.
How is the Child’s Compensation Award Managed?
Once a case for a minor has been settled it is necessary to make an application to the appropriate court to have the settlement figure “Ruled”. This is a safeguard that has been put in place for minors to ensure that they are receiving the true value of their claim.
The appropriate paperwork will be drafted and sent to the relevant Court and your solicitor will be provided with a date to attend Court to put the settlement figure to the Judge and go through the legal proceedings and medical evidence. If the Judge is satisfied with the settlement, the matter will be “Ruled” and the settlement money will be lodged into a court account.
What are General Damages?
General Damages in Personal Injury Cases for example; a Traffic Accident, are in place to compensate you for the impact the injury has and will have on your life. This includes pain and suffering mild or severe sustained from the injury. This pain can be physical but also physiological. Read more on Post Traumatic Stress Claims. The amount awarded will also be based on the impact of your injuries on your daily life such as short term or a permanent disability or disfigurement. A further consideration for the compensation end figure includes what areas of the body were temporarily or permanently affected.
What are Special Damages?
How to know if I have an Injury Claim
Before accepting your instructions, we will have discussed your case with you and will have advised you of the strengths and weaknesses (if any) of your case. In many cases, it is very clear from the outset that an injured party will succeed in being fully compensated, for example, where the injury results from a motor accident when the client is a passenger, to give but one example. In some cases, the courts apportion liability, i.e. they rule in favour of the Plaintiff but make a deduction from the full value of the case on the basis of the Plaintiff’s “contributory negligence.”
What if I was partly to Blame for the Accident?
It is important to note that many valid claims are never brought because an injured party feels the accident was his own fault, whereas the primary cause of the accident may well rest with some other party, and the injured party’s own carelessness may only have been a contributing factor. In such cases the courts may apportion Liability. It is therefore always advisable to consult a solicitor concerning any injury resulting from an accident.
How long does it take to get paid after the Settlement?
Following a settlement or a Court Award, it typically takes about 4 weeks for payment to issue from the major Insurance companies. Local Authorities can take longer, usually about 4 – 8 weeks.
Who pays out the Compensation Award?
A compensation figure is firstly offered by the defendants Insurance Company. Insurance Companies will often make a low value offer to your solicitor. It’s always the objective of the Insurance company to pay out less money. In Most cases your solicitor will reject this offer when the defendant appears to be liable.
Defendants and their insurance companies will want to avoid the expense of Going to Court.
Once the insurance company realises the defendants liability position, an appropriate settlement offer will be made. If the case is complicated, this can cause delays.
Once an insurance company has admitted liability on behalf of the defendant and agreed to process the claim, this moves quickly. Typically, the claimant will receive their compensation payment (from initial offer to agreed offer) within a few weeks.
What is a Personal Injury Claim?
A personal injury is defined as either a physical injury, disease or illness, or a psychological injury / condition that has been caused by someone else.
If you were injured in an accident due to no fault or your own, Irish law entitles you to claim General Damages compensation for your injuries sustained, Loss of Income, Future Care and possibly other Special Damages. Our personal injury solicitors deal with a wide range of minor to catastrophic and life changing injuries. So, If you have suffered a personal injury and want to make a claim for an accident, contact our team today.
Got a query about your case?
Whether your injury case is straight forward or complex, our solicitors will provide professional legal advice, guidance and support throughout your case. Simply, tell us a little bit about what happened, we will guide you through the process and tell you whether or not you can claim for injury. Contact us by phone or email 7 Days a week. Expert Legal advice as you need it.
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