I Got Hurt At Work, Do I Need A Lawyer?
By Stephen Hudson. Last Updated 28th April 2023. ‘I got hurt at work, do I need a lawyer?’ is a common question that we are asked by many workplace accident claimants. The answer isn’t as simple as you might think. While it is true that people could pursue a case against their employer for a workplace accident alone, there are a number of benefits to using the services of an experienced personal injury solicitor for such claims. This is something we look at in more detail in this guide.
In the sections that follow, we take a look at how using a personal injury lawyer could ensure that you are made aware of all your rights. We also look at how you could benefit from their legal knowledge to help ensure you receive the maximum compensation possible for your claim.
We also take a look at the kind of situations that could lead to an employee being hurt at work and offer some insight into how to begin a claim for compensation with legal assistance.
If you require any clarification on anything contained in this guide, or if you’d like us to provide you with a solicitor for your claim, you can contact us on 0800 073 8804.
We’d be delighted to answer your questions and help you begin your case.
Select A Section
- What Is A Lawyer Handling Cases Where You Got Hurt At Work?
- Do I Need A Lawyer To Learn About My Rights?
- Do I Need A Lawyer To Learn About My Eligibility To Claim?
- I Got Hurt At Work, In What Circumstances May I Need A Lawyer
- High-Risk Workplaces
- Examples Of How People Could Be Hurt At Work
- Calculating Compensation If You Got Hurt At Work
- Do You Need A Lawyer To Claim For Special Damages?
- How A Lawyer Could Help You To Get An Interim Payment
- Claim For An Accident At Work With Our No Win No Fee Lawyers
Whether you’ve hurt your back at work and asked ‘what do I do about claiming?’, or you’re not sure whether your injury at work could lead to a claim, a personal injury lawyer could help you.
While the simple answer to ‘I got hurt at work, do I need a lawyer?’ is, legally, no, there are so many complicated factors that go into deciding whether to use a lawyer to help you with your claim.
For example, you may have a relatively straightforward case, but your employer may be disputing liability, or you may not know how long you could have to claim. You might have medical bills mounting up, have lost out on income, and be worried about securing a payout quickly, or you may be concerned that your employer would treat you badly because you were making a claim against them.
A lawyer could help make the whole process of making a claim much simpler, which could allow you to concentrate more on your recovery, or moving forward after a workplace accident.
A personal injury lawyer could help you with claims such as:
- Slips, trips and falls due to hazards in the workplace
- Accidents due to faulty machinery
- Injuries due to a lack of PPE
- Stress at work health problems
- Assault or abuse at work injuries
- Accidents due to poor maintenance of workplace facilities
- Injuries due to lack of training
If you have been injured at work and would like to know if a lawyer could help you, our team of expert advisors could provide you with free advice and guidance when it comes to making a claim.
If you got hurt at work and need a lawyer to explain what rights you have, you may be interested to know that:
- You have the right to make a claim – if you are wrongfully injured at work in England or Wales, you have the right to make a claim
- You have a right to receive proper compensation for financial losses caused by your injuries and physical/psychological pain
- You have a right to be treated the same as you would be if you hadn’t made a claim, under whistleblowing laws
- You have a right to Statutory Sick Pay (SSP), if eligible, and you have to take time off work to recover from illness or injury caused by an accident at work
If you’d like to know more about your rights, please do not hesitate to call us. We could offer free advice and check your eligibility to claim.
Your eligibility to claim depends on you being able to prove:
- Your employer had a duty of care to uphold your health and safety at work under the Health And Safety At Work Act etc. 1974
- They breached their duty of care toward you
- You suffered ill-health or injury because of their breach
You would also have to make your claim within the personal injury claims time limit applicable to your case. While in many cases this would be 3 years from an accident date or the date of discovery of injury or ill-health, there could be some exceptions.
If you got hurt at work, you may need a lawyer to go through these exceptions with you to see how long you could have to make your claim.
If you got hurt at work, you may need a lawyer if:
- Someone passed away from their injuries
- There were broken bones or injuries that led to hospitalisation
- Your long-term health was affected
- Your medical costs were high
- You missed out on income because you had to take time off work
- You suffered non-financial losses, such as trauma, stress, pain or suffering
- There is a dispute about who caused the accident and who could be liable
- There were several people harmed in the accident
- Something was recorded incorrectly about the accident
- The details of the case are complicated, whether due to legal, medical or technical complications
- The insurance company is not accepting your claim
You may wish to retain the services of a lawyer for your claim regardless of how complex your claim is. Even for the simplest of claims, a lawyer could help to make the process less stressful and could ensure you get the maximum compensation achievable for your claim.
Can I be sacked for causing an accident at work?
If you caused the accident in which you or others were harmed, your employer may find you guilty of misconduct and you could be dismissed.
If you were partially at fault, but were still injured, you could potentially make a split liability claim, where more than one party accepts some percentage of responsibility for the accident. However, your compensation amount would be accordingly affected.
There are lots of different ways in which a person could be hurt at work. Depending on the type of workplace accident you’ve had, you could suffer injuries such as:
- Amputations – these could be common in cases where people have been struck with something or been crushed
- Burns, scars and cuts – these could be due to accidents with tools, electrical equipment or chemicals, for example.
- Repetitive strain injury – these could be caused by typing, lifting, or other repetitive tasks
- Fractures – these could be caused in many different ways, including slips, trips and falls
- Stress/mental health injuries – these could be caused by workload issues or harassment, for example
- Head injuries – these could cause long-term brain injuries in severe cases
- Neck and spinal injuries – these could be caused by falls from height
- Back injuries – these could be caused by falls, overuse, and poor lifting techniques
- Asbestos-related illnesses – could be caused by the unsafe presence of asbestos in the workplace
Whatever type of injury you’ve sustained, if you’re asking yourself the question: ‘I got hurt at work do I need a lawyer?’, while the legal answer would be no, it could be worth using the services of a personal injury solicitor to help make sure you are fully compensated.
One reason people who are hurt at work feel they need a lawyer to help them is to maximise the compensation payout they receive. But how much could that be?
Below, we provide a useful alternative to a personal injury claims calculator to give you some insight into payout amounts for common workplace injuries in general damages. General damages compensates you for the pain and suffering you have experienced.
We should mention that the figures below come from the Judicial College Guidelines, which is a regularly updated publication that could be used to determine an appropriate level of compensation for your injuries.
|Injury Sustained||JCG Compensation Bracket||Further Information|
|Moderate Brain Damage (i)||£150,110 to £219,070||Where there is a moderate – severe deficit to intellect, personality changes, effects on speech, sight and other senses. Significant risk of epilepsy could feature and there would be no prospect of the injured party being capable of employment.|
|Minor Brain/Head Injury||£2,210 to £12,770||Minimal if any brain damage. Compensation could be calculated based on how severe the initial injury was, how long it took for the injured party to recover, any continuing symptoms and whether headaches are present or not.|
|Moderate Back Injury - (ii)||£12,510 to £27,760||Common back injuries including those that feature disturbed ligaments/muscles which cause backache, as well as exacerbation or acceleration of previous conditions by 5 years or more.|
|Clavicle Fracture||£5,150 to £12,240||The award could be calculated based on how extensive the fracture was, how disabling it was and whether any residual symptoms were permanent or temporary.|
|Less Severe Arm Injury||£19,200 to £39,170||While the injured party might have initially faced significant disability, there would be a substantial recovery.|
|Index Finger Fractures||£9,110 to £12,240||If a fracture has mended quickly, but there has been some continued impairment of grip, it causes pain when used heavily and there is a likelihood of osteoarthritis.|
|Serious Hand Injury||£29,000 to £61,910||The hand will be reduced to about 50% capacity. For example, some fingers may have been amputated.|
|Severe Toe Injury||£13,740 to £21,070||Could include severe crush injuries leading to amputation, or falling just short of amputation. Symptoms will be significant.|
If you don’t see the injury you’ve sustained above, please call our team. We could look at what the Judicial College Guidelines could deem appropriate for other injuries you may have sustained.
If you got hurt at work, a lawyer could also help you to secure special damages. These are damages designed to compensate you for the financial harm you’ve suffered because of your injuries. The types of expenses and losses you could claim for include:
- Medical expenses – For example, physiotherapy, counselling, prescription medicines and mobility aids could have cost you money.
- Travel costs – These could include costs incurred seeing doctors or other medical professionals or going to meet with your lawyer.
- Care costs – A claim for care costs could be made if you’ve had to be cared for in your home by someone, for example, to help you with feeding, dressing or bathing.
- Income losses – If you’ve been unable to work and your income has been reduced because of your injuries, this could lead to you being able to claim for income losses.
If you’ve incurred any expenses due to your injuries, it would be worth keeping any proof of these expenses in a safe place. This is so you can provide them to your lawyer when required. Without proof, you may miss out on some of the compensation you could be entitled to claim.
If you got hurt, you may not need a lawyer to help you claim, but it could be beneficial to use their services in order to make sure all special damages you are eligible for are included within your claim.
In some circumstances, your injuries may lead you into a financial position where you are unable to pay your bills, particularly if you have been unable to work because of your injuries. You may even have incurred costs for medical treatments which could also affect your financial situation.
An injury at work claim lawyer could help you if you are struggling with the financial impact of your injuries, by attempting to get an interim payment for you which could help you cover essential bills while your claim is in progress.
Effectively, an interim payment is part of your total compensation settlement, paid out in advance of your claim being finalised. Once your claim is settled, you’d receive the level of compensation agreed, minus the amount that had been paid out to you early. However, you would only usually be able to get an interim payment if the liable party has admitted liability.
The best injury at work lawyers could secure you an interim payment either by negotiation of a voluntary interim payment. Or they could do so by preparing court proceedings and asking the courts to order an interim payment from the liable party. While your request for an interim payout would have to fulfil certain criteria, it may be possible for your lawyer to secure interim payments on more than one occasion.
If you contact our team for help with making a claim and you have a strong case, then we may connect you with one of our accident at work solicitors. They work under No Win No Fee agreements, which are also known as Conditional Fee Agreements (CFAs).
There are several financial benefits to a No Win No Fee solicitor when making a claim. One of these benefits is that you don’t have to pay any solicitor fees upfront if this type of solicitor agrees to take on your claim. You also won’t need to pay any solicitor fees while the claim is still being processed.
If your claim goes ahead and is successful, then your solicitor will usually subtract a small and legally capped percentage from your compensation. However, if your claim is unsuccessful, then you won’t need to pay your solicitor for the work they have done on your case.
If you would like to speak to an advisor about working with workplace accident lawyers under a No Win No Fee agreement, you can contact our team.
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I Hurt My Back At Work, Can I Sue? – Back injuries at work are covered in this back injury claims guide.
Injured While Working For Cash – Here, we look at cash in hand payments and how they could affect a claim.
Lifting Injuries At Work – This guide looks at the maximum weight that should be lifted at work and how to make a claim for a manual handling accident.
Your Employer’s Health And Safety Provision – This links to the HSE page on Health and Safety at Work guidance.
Compensation For Work Injuries – Here on the government website, you can find information on compensation for work injuries.
Work-related Mental Health Conditions – Here, we take you to the HSE website’s page covering work-related mental health conditions.
Work-Related Illness Claims – Find out how much you could claim.
Stuck In A Lift – Read about this kind of accident and if you could claim.
For further information on ‘I got hurt at work, do I need a lawyer?’ please feel free to get in touch at any time.