I Was Attacked As A Lone Worker, Can I Claim Compensation?
By Jo Greenwood. Last Updated 13th June 2023. Employers have a responsibility to do all they reasonably can to ensure the health and safety of their employees. This applies to all workers and any locations they are asked to work in. If you were attacked as a lone worker and your employer did not do enough to protect you, you could be eligible to make a claim for compensation.
This guide will talk about the protections afforded to lone workers, the responsibility placed on employers and when a lone worker could be eligible to make a personal injury claim after being attacked. We will also give you information about compensation and how you can get in touch with a personal injury lawyer to help you make a claim.
Advisers are also available to help you with any queries you have. To contact a member of our team, reach out by:
Select A Section
- Attacked As A Lone Worker Injury Claims
- How Should Employers Manage The Risk Of Lone Working?
- Protecting Lone Workers Against Violence In The Workplace
- Can I Claim If Attacked As A Lone Worker
- I Was Attacked As A Lone Worker, How Much Could I Claim?
- How To Claim If You Were Attacked As A Lone Worker
An employer cannot plan for every eventuality, but it is their responsibility to:
- Be aware of common and possible risks that your work poses
- Make any task they ask you to perform as safe as they can practically make it
This responsibility is known as a duty of care, and it is established in Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 (HASAWA), and other workplace health and safety legislation. If you sustain an injury because your employer did not take sufficient actions to prevent you from suffering harm, you could be eligible to make a claim for compensation.
This means if you were attacked as a lone worker, there are situations where your employer could be found liable for your injury. We’ll discuss them below, but an adviser can also help you by discussing your situation with you and assessing if your employer could be found at fault.
If your employer would not be found at fault for your injuries, you can still make a claim for or compensation for suffering a criminal injury in a criminal injury claim. Get in touch to see which channel of pursuing compensation might be most appropriate for your circumstances.
Outside of being attacked, lone workers can face the risk of suffering injuries on the job without access to immediate help. This could pose the risk of someone being injured and might lead to them being the victim of violence in the workplace.
One of the things an employer should do initially to mitigate the risk of someone working alone is to perform a risk assessment. This can help illustrate some of the issues that the lone worker might experience. For example:
- Are they working with people who may be drunk or are under the influence of illegal substances?
- Are they given authority over members of the public or seen to be enforcing rules in a way that could make customers irate?
- Are they carrying valuables or money that might make them a target for a robbery?
Furthermore, the risk assessment should consider whether it’s necessary at all for the job to be performed by a lone worker. In some cases, it might be the case
If you were injured or attacked as a lone worker, because your employer failed to take reasonable and practical steps that could have protected you, please reach out to one of our advisers to discuss the options you have.
In workplaces that carry a risk of violence, employers have a responsibility to do everything they practically can to manage or reduce that risk. This can include:
- CCTV & monitoring. For on-site lone-working, monitoring like CCTV can let employers know if an employee is being attacked. Other systems, like two-way radios and portable alarm systems, can also help lone-workers communicate in an emergency.
- Safe staffing levels. This is especially applicable to security work. An adequate amount of staff should be kept on hand to prevent an employee from being overwhelmed.
- Providing Training. Before an employer asks you to work in an off-site location or perform a task alone at work without support, they should make sure you are sufficiently trained and capable of carrying out the task. You may be able to make a claim if you suffered an injury because of inadequate training.
Our advisers can give you more information on whether you would eligible to make a claim for your suffered injury after being attacked as a lone worker.
Attacks on lone workers can happen for a number of reasons. However, to be eligible to make a personal injury claim, you will need to prove that your employer breached their duty of care and, as a result, you suffered injuries.
Collecting sufficient evidence could help support your personal injury claim. Some examples of the evidence you could collect to help support your claim include:
- CCTV footage of the incident.
- Photographs of any visible injuries you suffered.
- The contact details of any eyewitnesses to the incident.
- Medical evidence regarding the injuries you suffered, such as a copy of your medical records.
As well as collecting evidence, you will need to ensure you start your claim within the relevant limitation period. Generally, you will have three years to start a personal injury claim from the date of the incident that caused your injuries. However, there are certain exceptions to this three-year time limit.
To find out if you could be eligible to make a personal injury claim if your safety as a lone worker was compromised, you can contact our advisors. They can also provide you with more information on the evidence needed if you are making your claim through the CICA.
If your employer’s failure to fulfil their duty of care to you contributed to your injury, you may be able to file a personal injury claim against them. Compensation could address the injury you suffered and any financial losses you may have incurred because of the injury.
A head of your claim known as general damages can compensate you for the pain and suffering that your injuries have caused you. To illustrate potential compensation awards, we’ve included some injuries, and potential compensation brackets for those injuries, as listed in the latest edition of the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG). The brackets are created from previous court settlements and are used by legal professionals to help value claims.
Injury Notes Award
Bowel Injuries: (e) Damage from penetrating injuries but no permanent effects to function £12,590 to
Multiple Fractures Of Facial Bones Including cases of permanent deformity £14,900 to £23,950
Moderate Psychiatric Damage Cases where a person's ability to cope with life and work was affected, but is now showing signs of improvement £5,860 to £19,070
Chest Injuries: (d) A penetrating wound causing permanent tissue damage £12,590 to £17,960
Digestive System Injury: (a) Injuries from penetrating stab wounds £6,610 to
Chest Injuries: (e) An injury that leads to a collapsed lung where a full and uncomplicated recovery has been made £2,190 to £5,320
Minor Head Injury Little to no brain damage. Award will consider how long you were affected by the injury and the extent of ongoing symptoms. £2,210 to £12,770
Less Severe Psychiatric Damage A person's ability to perform daily tasks was affected for a period of time £1,540 to £5,860
Chest Injuries: (f) Fractured ribs taking weeks to heal Up to £3,950
Fractures of Nose: (iii) Fracture that needed manual fixing to treat £2,520 to
You could also seek compensation under special damages for any financial impact that the injury has had on you. This can account for the money you have lost. You can also be compensated for the money you expect to lose out on until your injury heals.
If you want to have your claim valued, our advisers can talk to you in-depth about your claim, inform you about other costs you can claim on and offer you a compensation estimate after suffering an assault at work due to negligence.
If you are looking for legal help, it is possible to hire a work accident solicitor to represent you on a No Win No Fee basis. This No Win No Fee agreement or Conditional Fee Agreement means they would not require an upfront fee, and they will not charge you ongoing fees as they handle your claim.
Instead, they would charge you a success fee, which will only be collected if your claim is successful. If your claim is not successful, they will not charge you the success fee.
A solicitor’s help can be beneficial in pursuing compensation. They have experience with dealing in claims, corresponding with defendants and know the law around employment and employers’ responsibilities. If you were attacked as a lone worker, a solicitor can help make the process of claiming run more smoothly than it otherwise would.
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Learn More About Workplace Violence
We’ve included some additional links you might find useful including:
- HSE: The HSE have a guide on managing the risks of working alone
- The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA)
- When to go to A&E according to the NHS
Thank you for reading our guide on what to do if you were attacked as a lone worker. We offer guides on other topics such as:
- Defective Work Equipment Injury Claims
- Claiming Compensation For Suffering Stress at Work
- Claims For Being Dismissed After Suffering An Accident At Work
Please get in touch with our advisers for any more information you might need.