1 Accidents at work Personal Injury All you need to know about making a claim following an accident at work from leading personal injury lawyers Irwin Mitchell.
2 Your encouragement and advice to pursue the claim was good advice and we are both grateful for your support. Thank you again for your diligence and support throughout the process. Don This information relates to the law and procedures in England and Wales. Please contact us if you need advice about the law and procedure in other legal jurisdictions.
3 Contents Introduction Why use Irwin Mitchell? When can I make a claim? How do I make a claim? How much will it cost? How much compensation will I get? What happens when I claim? What else can we help you with? Useful contacts
4 Introduction We have handled thousands of injury cases on behalf of clients who have been injured at work, including trade union members. Our reputation in successfully claiming for industrial work accidents and workplace injury makes us a formidable force and recognised leaders in our field. Your employer must provide the correct health and safety advice, training, protective equipment, protective clothing and first aid facilities to keep you safe at work. If you have been involved in an accident caused by a failure in any of these areas, you may be able to make a claim. I would like to thank you personally for your hard work, which was at times beyond the call of duty, Irwin Mitchell as a company have been outstanding, as was the whole legal team that worked on this case. Ron
5 5 Regulations on workplace safety exist to cover a range of work accidents including: Accidents while lifting or moving heavy loads Accidents while using machinery Accidents caused by a lack of safety equipment Falls from height Tripping and slipping. Wherever you work and however you have been injured, Irwin Mitchell s team of specialist workplace accident lawyers can help you seek the compensation you need to ensure your future is protected. As well as helping you claim compensation, we can help with your medical treatment and rehabilitation. This can involve liaison with NHS staff, helping you access private healthcare and advising on any lifestyle changes you need to make after an accident, such as installing ramps at your home or buying a more accessible car. At all times during your claim we will keep you up-todate with what is happening and use plain English. We understand that making a claim can seem daunting so we will do all we can to make the process as stress-free for you as possible so that you can concentrate on your recovery. Above all, we put you first. To talk to a specialist advisor today simply call free on or text CLAIM to and someone will call you back
6 Why use Irwin Mitchell? Irwin Mitchell is one of the largest and most experienced personal injury law firms in the country. Our reputation for helping people who ve suffered accidents at work is second to none and every year we recover millions of pounds of compensation for people who have been injured in this way.
7 7 Our service Employing many of the country s finest personal injury lawyers, our highly specialised team combines powerful legal arguments with care and consideration to ensure the best possible outcome for you. Our friendly professional service includes: Ensuring specialist employment solicitors give you advice about your employment rights if you are worried Arranging for you to receive the best support for your recovery and rehabilitation Asking the court to pay some of your compensation early if needed so that you can receive private medical care and treatment, and to help you to pay your bills if you cannot work due to your illness Expert advice on state benefits, employment rights and other financial issues Help if you need it from solicitors in our other departments such as financial planning, personal injury trusts, wills advice and power of attorney. Campaign for improvements We also have a long history of campaigning for improvements in health and safety. Our aim is to improve the quality of life and levels of compensation for those who have suffered injury at work. To talk to a specialist advisor today simply call free on or text CLAIM to and someone will call you back
8 When can I make a claim? You must normally bring a claim within three years of the date you were injured at work. Variations If you were under 18 years of age when you were injured you can claim any time up until your 21st birthday. When accidents happen outside England and Wales time limits may be less. The sooner you contact us the better we are able to prepare your claim and the greater your chances of winning will be. Do I have a case? If you are unsure whether you have a claim, you or a family member just need to pick up the phone and talk it over with us. We ll assess your case free of charge, tell you what we think and then you can decide if you want to go ahead. We can also offer a Free Legal Health Check if you already have an on-going personal injury case with another lawyer and you have concerns about how your case is being managed. We are frequently asked to take over cases for clients who have not received the level of service that they expect. In these situations a lack of experience of dealing with specialist cases can lead to significant delays, a failure to obtain important interim payments and the possibility that cases are undervalued. This can mean that you miss out on the opportunity to take advantage of targeted rehabilitation and fail to receive all of the care, therapy and equipment that you need in order to obtain the best quality of life that is possible post your injury. It is fine to seek a second opinion from another solicitor or barrister, and changing your legal representation should not normally cost you anything.
9 9 What are my chances of winning? We have a long track record of winning compensation cases where the client initially thought they did not have a claim. When you contact us we will give you realistic advice on the chances of winning based on the information you provide. It is not possible to give a definitive answer on any case. However, the more information we have the more accurate an assessment we can make. We will always give you an honest, straightforward opinion. To talk to a specialist advisor today simply call free on or text CLAIM to and someone will call you back
10 How do I make a claim? Preparation is key here are some basic steps you can take to help your solicitor put together a claim for an accident at work. Please accept my sincere thanks for all the time and effort including patience that your staff have shown me. They have all left their mark upon me. John
11 11 Basic steps 1. If you have one, make sure you inform your Health and Safety representative about your accident as soon as possible. 2. Notify your employer immediately and complete a short accident report. Make sure that it is based on fact and not an attempt to suggest who you think is to blame. If you are still in shock, distressed or in pain, do not sign any report that is given to you by your employer or anyone else involved. 3. As soon as you are able to, write out a clear description of the accident. This will be of benefit to you and your solicitor. Make sure you sign and date it. 4. Try to get hold of the names and addresses of anyone who witnessed your accident. Your solicitor may wish to write to them. 5. Ask your Health and Safety representative to preserve the scene of your accident, if possible. Also ask them to take photos of the scene and make them available to you. If they are not able to get a camera, ask if someone could sketch the scene instead. NB If you have not been able to do any of these things don t worry: you may still be able to claim. To talk to a specialist advisor today simply call free on or text CLAIM to and someone will call you back
12 How much will it cost? Don t be put off by legal costs there might not be any. Contacting us for initial advice on your claim will cost you nothing even our phone number is free to call. If we advise you to pursue a claim with us, we will review all the options for funding it. Our preferred option is our No Cost To You scheme which you may know better as a No Win, No Fee agreement. That means: if you win you keep 100% of your compensation* if you lose you pay nothing** there are no hidden costs. *Does not apply to group actions or accidents and illnesses outside England and Wales, criminal injury claims or untraced driver claims and is subject to compliance with the terms of your funding arrangements. **Subject to entering a No Win, No Fee agreement with us and complying with its terms.
13 13 Other options When we discuss your claim in more detail we will tell you if the No Cost To You option is available or if we need to look at other funding options. You may, for example, be able to fund your case through trade union membership or legal expenses insurance.. To talk to a specialist advisor today simply call free on or text CLAIM to and someone will call you back
14 How much compensation will I get? The amount of compensation you receive will depend on the seriousness of your injury, how it has affected your life, how much money you have lost or will lose as a consequence - and whether you will need extra support in the future. May I thank you for the way my accident claim has been handled, after my accident my confidence was very low indeed but the sympathetic handling of my case restored my confidence. John
15 15 Individually assessed We will advise you at the outset on how courts approach the assessment of compensation and how that will apply to your case. However, it is important to bear in mind that everyone is different and the consequences of the same injury will vary from person to person. Keeping you informed As we learn more about you and your circumstances, we will be able to provide a more accurate idea of the financial value of your claim. You can be assured that we will do everything we can to recover the maximum amount of compensation available to you and organise payment terms to suit your immediate and on-going needs. To talk to a specialist advisor today simply call free on or text CLAIM to and someone will call you back
16 What happens when I claim? Once you have instructed us to claim on your behalf, we will investigate your case thoroughly by gathering witness statements and other relevant details about your injury and on-going requirements.
17 17 Insurance Once we have all the details of your case, a claim will be made against the relevant person or company, who usually have insurance. We will then wait for a response from the insurance company you are claiming against. This can go one of two ways - either they decide to meet your claim or they do not. Don t worry if an insurance company turns down your claim at first as this often happens - it does not mean that your claim will fail. Out of court The vast majority of cases are settled before they go to court. However, if your case is one of the few that is to be decided by a judge don t worry: it s perfectly normal and we ll be there to help you every step of the way. To talk to a specialist advisor today simply call free on or text CLAIM to and someone will call you back
18 What else can we help you with? We don t just specialise in helping people claim after accidents at work. Irwin Mitchell has dedicated teams working in all areas of personal legal services, enabling us to deliver quick and efficient legal advice on anything from buying a house or claiming compensation to settling family disputes and wills.
19 19 Our friendly professional staff give straightforward honest advice in all areas of personal legal services including: Divorce, children and family matters Buying or Selling a house Wills, trust and probate services Personal injury or illness Questioning social, education and health care provision Support on making decisions about personal welfare and healthcare matters and how the Court of Protection can assist Employment difficulties Financial Planning including tax and trusts Planning or environmental decisions. Whatever your legal issue our specialist staff will be pleased to help you sort it out all you need to do is pick up the phone and give us call. To talk to a specialist advisor today simply call free on or text CLAIM to and someone will call you back
20 Useful Contacts Backcare 16 Elmtree Road Teddington Middlesex TW11 8ST Helpline: online enquiry form Website: British Safety Council 70 Chancellors Raod London W6 9RS Telephone: Website:
21 21 Chemical Hazards Communication Society PO Box 222 Lynmington SO42 7GY Telephone: Website: Families Against Corporate Killers (FACK) c/o Hazards Campaign Windrush Millennium Centre 70 Alexandra Road Manchester M16 7WD Tel: Website: To talk to a specialist advisor today simply call free on or text CLAIM to and someone will call you back
22 Hazards PO Box 4042 Sheffield S8 2DG Website: Health and Safety Executive HSE Infoline Caerphilly Business Park Caerphilly CF83 3GG Telephone: Website: HSE have regional offices throughout the UK. Full details are listed on their website.
23 23 Sheffield Occupational Health Advisory Service 3rd Floor Queens Building 55 Queen Street Sheffield S1 2DX Telephone: Website: ROSPA ROSPA House 28 Calthorpe Road Edgbaston Birmingham B15 1RP Telephone: Website: To talk to a specialist advisor today simply call free on or text CLAIM to and someone will call you back
24 Looking for help with a claim? Freephone Text claim to and someone will call you back Irwin Mitchell Birmingham Imperial House, 31 Temple Street, B2 5DB Bristol One Castlepark, Tower Hill, BS2 0JA Glasgow 5th Floor, 150 St Vincent Street, G2 5NE Leeds 2 Wellington Place, LS1 4BZ London 40 Holborn Viaduct, EC1N 2PZ Manchester Bauhaus Rossetti Place, 27 Quay Street, M3 4AW Newcastle upon Tyne Gainsborough House, Grey Street, NE1 6AE Sheffield Riverside East, 2 Millsands, S3 8DT Irwin Mitchell Consulting Office Leicester Suite 122, 1st Floor, Gateway House, 4 Pennman Way, Grove Business Park, Enderby, LE19 1SY Irwin Mitchell Abogados Madrid Torre Picasso, Plaza Pablo Ruiz Picasso 1, 11B, Madrid 28020, Spain Málaga Calle Puerta del Mar 15, 2º, Málaga, Spain 2011 Consultations are by appointment only. Irwin Mitchell LLP is a limited liability partnership registered in England & Wales, with number OC343897, and is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority. All Scottish cases will be handled by a separate Scottish legal practice, Irwin Mitchell Scotland LLP, which is regulated by the Law Society of Scotland.