An illness caused by an accident at work can lead to an employee feeling torn between a responsibility to their employer and to themselves. It is a daunting prospect so it is vital that you know where to turn and how to approach things in the right way so that all parties will be happy with the outcome of the claim’s procedures.
A compensation claim (relating to injury and illness at workplace) can be made by an employee who was injured, disabled or suffering from illness in connection with work. Employees are eligible to make such compensation claims for the pain and suffering endured as a result of the illness. In many of the cases, the compensations are cash and/or medical care.
It’s a common misconception for people to think specific injuries automatically attract a specific amount but when you make a claim your personal suffering, pain, recovery time and any financial impact are all taken into account and so it is not possible to calculate exactly how much compensation you will receive.
Every case is an individual case and therefore solicitors need to be made aware of all the key features of your claim. Because of the personal nature of every case, online claims calculators cannot show you the exact value of your claim. Online claims calculators have been developed to give you an estimated compensation claim value to allow you to make an informed decision on whether you wish to proceed with legal proceedings to make a claim.
So what is the claims process?
Although every case will vary, below are some of the main steps to help you understand more about claiming and make the process less daunting:
Step 1: Get in touch to find out whether you could claim
The first step towards making a compensation claim is to get in touch with a legal firm to inform them about what you’ve been through, to be given sound legal advice and decide whether or not a claim could be made. If you decide to take your claim further, the legal firm will possibly put you in contact with a solicitor within their firm who is a specialist in dealing with claims.
Step 2: Speak to a specialist solicitor
A specialist solicitor, who has experience working with compensation claims, will answer any remaining questions you have and give you a free consultation on the next steps of your case. At this stage more details will be needed about your injury and the impact it’s had on your life so that they can make sure you receive all the compensation you’re owed.
Step 3: Your solicitor notifies the other party
Your claim will be started with your solicitor letting the other party know that you’re making a claim.
They will send a ‘Letter of Claim’, which will include the details of your injuries and accident, as well as the effects it’s had on your life, family and finances.
The other party then has 21 days to acknowledge your letter of claim and will then either admit or deny responsibility (liability) for your injuries. It is common for liability to be denied at first but it is the solicitor’s job to prove that the accident was their fault. Once liability has been accepted, the degree of the damage you have suffered as a result of the accident will need to be proven. This might be as simple as getting hold of your GP and hospital records, or it might involve you seeing specialist doctors and medical experts who will then draw up reports.
Step 4: Your compensation is negotiated
Fortunately, during your claim, your solicitor will be able to do most of the hard work for you, allowing you the time to concentrate on your recovery. They’ll communicate with the other party on your behalf and will update you regularly.
Step 5: You receive your compensation
If you have a successful claim, then you’ll receive your compensation. This is often paid by the other party’s insurance company.
It is hard to say exactly how long your claim will take, because of the individual nature of every case, but once your claim has been settled, you’ll usually receive your compensation quite quickly – usually within two weeks to a month.
So if you’ve sustained an injury or illness as a result of an accident at work, you have the right to pursue a compensation claim, which, if successful, will provide you with financial and/or medical benefits, to help you cope and manage effectively with the burdens associated with your illness or injury.
Why would you not pursue a compensation claim?
If you would like to find out more from an expert at Harry McPartland & Sons, get in touch with us using our online form.