In the UK, all employers have a responsibility to ensure that a workplace is safe. They have a duty of care towards you and your fellow employee when you are employed by them. Employers are legally obliged to do so by adhering the legislation and laws that are in place to protect you. This includes making sure that all tools, machinery and equipment is kept in good working order at all times.
Should you be in an accident at work that involves faulty equipment and you are injured, you may be entitled to seek compensation from an employer by filing an accident at work claim providing you can show they were negligent in their duty to keep you safe from injury at work. To find out whether you could sue an employer for a faulty equipment injury suffered in the workplace, please read on.
- UK Law on Health and Safety at Work
- What Are the Most Commonly Reported Faulty Equipment Accidents in the Workplace?
- What is My Employer’s Duty of Care Towards Me?
- Would My Faulty Equipment Injury Claim be Valid?
- How to Start a Faulty Equipment Injury Claim
- What Can Be Included in a Defective Equipment Injury Claim?
- Is It Worth Filing a Faulty Equipment Injury Claim Against an Employer?
- Do I Have Worker’s Rights Following an Defective Equipment Accident at Work?
- Does an Employer Have Any Legal Responsibilities in the Workplace?
- What Advantage is There to Having Legal Representation if I Make a Defective Equipment Injury Claim?
- What is the Time Limit to Making a Faulty Equipment Injury Claim Against an Employer?
- Can an Employer Fire Me For Filing a Faulty Equipment Injury Claim?
- Would an Accident at Work Solicitor Work Offer Me No Win No Fee Terms on My Faulty Equipment Injury Claim?
- Informative Links
As mentioned above, there are several laws in the United Kingdom which are there to protect employees and other staff in the workplace. An employer has to keep all tools, machinery and equipment that you operate or use, in good working order and must routinely service them as recommended by a manufacturer. As examples, whether you do any of the following jobs in the workplace, your employer must ensure the tools that you use are correctly maintained:
- Forklift driver
- Machine operator
Should you be injured in a workplace accident because of faulty equipment, you should contact a personal injury solicitor at www.accidentclaims.co.uk because you may be entitled to seek compensation from your employer who could be deemed in breach of their legal duty to ensure you are kept safe from injury at work.
The laws that protect you and your fellow employees when you are at work are as follows:
- The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974
- The Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 (PUWER)
- The Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998 (LOLER)
- Pressure Equipment Regulations
- Personal Protective Equipment Regulations 1992
Organisations, companies, businesses and employers who have more than 5 people working for them as “employees” are legally obliged to hold a health and safety policy. They must also carry out frequent risk assessments of the work environment before setting in place all reasonable measures to reduce the risk of harm and injury coming to employees and visitors to a work environment.
Some of the most commonly reported injuries suffered in accidents at work that involved faulty equipment, machinery and tools include the following:
- Suffering a crush in jury at work because of unstable or faulty equipment
- Suffering a crush injury in the workplace because no guard rails were erected or they were broken
- Suffering an electrical shock due to faulty wiring on equipment
- Suffering an electrical burn due to faulty wiring
- Suffering scalds due to being inadequate personal protective equipment
- Falling from a height because equipment like a work platform, ladder or scaffolding was badly erected, incorrectly maintained and therefore unstable
- Suffering an injury because of sharp edges or broken parts on equipment, machinery
- Suffering injuries due to badly maintained or broken tools
- Suffering injuries due to a lack of or inadequate training
With this said, you could suffer an injury due to faulty equipment in many ways and if you believe that your employer did not do enough to keep you safe from injury as they are legally required to do, you should contact an accident at work solicitor who would offer you a no obligation, free, initial consultation so they can assess whether you have a strong case against a negligent employer.
As previously touched upon, all employers have a legal duty to keep you safe from injury and harm when you are in the workplace. Employers must ensure that all equipment, tools and machinery are safe to operate to reduce the risk of a workplace accident happening. If you operate any sort of equipment, machinery and you routinely use tools when you are at work, you must have been adequately trained to do so and the same applies to your fellow employees.
If any equipment, machinery or tools are defective and you suffer an injury as a direct consequence, it could entitle you to file for compensation. An employer would have to show the following if they do not accept liability for the injuries you suffered when using the equipment that you claim is faulty or defective:
- That you incorrectly used or operated the equipment, machinery or tools
- That you used the equipment for a job that is was not intended to be used for
Should this be an employer’s argument that they cannot be held liable for the injuries you sustained whilst at work, you should contact an accident at work solicitor at www.accidentclaims.co.uk who would investigate the evidence you have that it was not you but your employer who was negligent because the equipment, tools or machinery you were using at the time was faulty or defective.
For a faulty equipment injury claim to be valid, you would need to show that you did not contribute to the workplace accident that left you injured. You would need to provide the following evidence in support of an accident at work claim against a negligent employer:
- That you suffered your injuries whilst at work
- That the machinery, tools or equipment you were using or operating at the time of the incident was not correctly maintained in good working order by your employer
- That your injuries could have been avoided if the equipment, machinery or tools you were using or operating at the time of the accident had been correctly serviced and maintained as per a manufacturer’s recommendations
Because proving liability in this type of accident at work claim can prove challenging, it is best to seek legal advice before pursuing a case against an employer. Personal injury lawyers have the required legal expertise to deal with faulty equipment claims and are well aware of the many pitfalls that must be avoided and the time limit that must be respected.
If you are involved in an accident at work that involves faulty equipment and you sustain an injury whether minor or a lot more severe, you should seek medical attention as soon as you can so that your injuries can be correctly assessed. Once you have been seen by a doctor, you should then contact a personal injury lawyer who would quickly assess who could be held responsible for your injuries whether it is your employer who could be deemed in breach of their legal duty to keep you safe.
Next, you should gather as much evidence to support your faulty equipment injury claim as you can. This should include the following:
- A medical report of the workplace injuries you sustained
- Written statements from witnesses together with their contact details
- CCTV footage (if available) of the incident – your employer is obliged to provide you with this in a timely fashion which is within 40 days of having received your request
- Photos of your injuries prior to having been treated
- Photos of where the accident occurred and the equipment, machinery and tools you were using at the time
- The record of the accident as reported in the workplace Accident Book – if there is no book, you can either send your employer a personal email or a registered letter detailing the accident at work and the injuries you suffered, remembering to keep a copy of the letter for your own personal records
You should also keep all relevant receipts of the expenses and other costs you incurred as a directly result of having been injured at work because these would be required to support any “special damages” you may want to claim in your faulty equipment injury claim.
If the solicitor you contact feels that you have a strong claim against your employer and you pursue your case against them, you would be able to claim both the losses you incurred and the damages you sustained due operating or using faulty equipment, machinery or tools when you were at work. Personal injury compensation is divided into two parts which cover your damages/injuries and your losses/out of pocket expenses which are as follows:
- General damages – compensate you for the workplace injuries you suffered through employer negligence. The amount you would be awarded in a successful case would be based on the Judicial College Guidelines and the extent of the injuries you suffered
- Special damages – compensate you for your out of pocket expenses. As such, they are easier to calculate because they take into account the “actual expenses” you incurred which can be directly linked to the workplace injuries you suffered
With this said, “special damages” you can claim for would include the following:
- Medical and travel costs
- Care costs
- Home and vehicle adaptations
- All other expenses that can be directly linked to your injuries
If you are unsure of what can be included when claiming “special damages”, a personal injury solicitor at www.accidentclaims.co.uk would offer vital assistance on what can be included in a successful faulty equipment injury claim and what could not be included when claiming “special damages”.
It is one of your worker’s rights to file an accident at work claim and to seek compensation from an employer if you are injured in the workplace and you have enough evidence to prove employer negligence. You would also have to show that you suffered your workplace injuries in the last three years which is the statutory time limit for making a personal injury claim against a third party – in this instance, your employer.
All employers in the UK have a legal obligation to hold valid liability insurance because it is compulsory for them to do so. The cover must also meet the legal requirement of £5 million and be issued by an approved insurance provider. When you seek compensation from an employer for a faulty equipment injury, it is their insurer who deals with your case from the outset and it would then insurance company who pays the accident at work compensation you would be entitled to receive in a successful claim.
The money you are awarded would reimburse all your out of pocket expenses and should you require ongoing therapy or rehabilitation, it would pay for the cost of the treatment. In short, the faulty equipment injury compensation you are awarded would make your life much easier and could help speed up your recovery from the workplace injuries you sustained. If your injuries are such that they are life-changing, the compensation you are awarded could ensure that you and your loved ones do not have to cope with financial hardship as a result of having been injured in the workplace through no fault of your own.
Worker’s rights in the United Kingdom are protected which means that if you are injured when you are at work due to defective equipment, machinery or tools, you have the right to do the following:
- File an accident at work claim against an employer who could been deemed negligent in their legal duty to ensure the workplace is safe for you and your fellow employees to work in
- That your job is secure if you seek compensation from an employer for the injuries you suffered
Should your employer attempt to stop you from filing an accident at work claim against them or they threaten you with the sack or redundancy for seeking compensation for the faulty equipment injury you suffered, they would be acting unlawfully towards you. As such, you should contact a lawyer who would assess whether you would be entitled to file further legal action against your employer.
As previously mentioned, all employers must ensure that the place you work is safe and that risk assessments are frequently carried out to reduce the risk of a workplace accident from happening. Employers in the UK must ensure that you are provided with the following:
- Adequate training and ongoing training
- That equipment, machinery and tools are correctly maintained and regularly serviced
- That personal protective equipment is always available and that it is in good condition
- That all employees and other staff are made aware of “good” working practices and procedures
What Advantage is There to Having Legal Representation if I Make a Defective Equipment Injury Claim?
Because faulty equipment injury claims tend to be complex legal procedures, it is far better to seek advice from an accident at work solicitor before doing anything else. A solicitor has the necessary legal expertise to deal with all aspects of your case and are well aware of the pre-action protocols that must be respected by both parties. Another benefit of seeking legal advice and representation sooner rather than later, is they would arrange for your injuries to be assessed by an independent medical professional and it is the report they provide that would be used to calculate the level of general damages you may be entitled to receive.
Other benefits of having legal representation when filing a faulty equipment injury claim against a negligent employer would include but is not limited to the following:
- A personal injury solicitor would agree to work on your claim by offering you No Win No Fee terms if they establish you have a strong case against your employer. In short, it means you can seek compensation without any financial risk
- The solicitor would arrange for you to be examined by an independent specialist who would produce a medical report detailing the extent of your injuries which would be key to calculating the level of faulty equipment injury compensation you may receive
- An accident at work lawyer has the necessary legal expertise to avoid the many pitfalls that could see a claim being unsuccessful from the outset and are familiar with all the pre-action protocols as well as the statutory 3 time limit that must be respected for a claim to be valid
- A personal injury lawyer would inform you at the earliest opportunity how much faulty equipment injury compensation you could be awarded in a successful claim against a negligent employer
- Solicitors can gain access to similar precedent cases by referring to legal libraries
- Should your claim be more complex and therefore a final settlement takes longer to reach, a personal injury solicitor would ensure that you are paid “interim payments” to avoid financial hardship
- An accident at work lawyer would ensure the final settlement you are offered is fair and acceptable
- Should your injuries be severe and you therefore need long-term, ongoing treatment or therapy, a personal injury solicitor would make sure the cost of this is included in the amount of faulty equipment injury compensation you are awarded
You would have 3 years to file a faulty equipment injury claim against a negligent employer, but the deadline would begin at different times which is explained below:
- 3 years from the time you were injured in the workplace
- 3 years from your 18th birthday should you have been injured prior to this date. In short, you would have up until you are 21 years old to seek compensation from an employer
- 3 years from the time a doctor or other medical professional diagnoses you as having developed a health condition they can directly link to the workplace injury you suffered
Your employer would be in breach of the law if they fired you because you filed a faulty equipment injury claim against them. As previously touched upon, if an employer threatens you in any way because you seek compensation from them for a workplace injury you sustained through their negligence, you should contact a solicitor who specialises in employment law because you could be entitled to file further action against your employer.
Would an Accident at Work Solicitor Work Offer Me No Win No Fee Terms on My Faulty Equipment Injury Claim?
A personal injury solicitor would agree to represent you on a No Win No Fee basis providing they feel you have a strong case against an employer who could be deemed in breach of their legal duty to keep you safe from injury and harm at work. As such, you would need to provide sufficient evidence to support a faulty equipment injury claim.
A CFA or Conditional Fee Agreement lays out the Terms and Conditions of the contract between a personal injury lawyer and you. It also sets out the “success fee” which would only be payable when you win your claim against an employer and the amount which is an agreed percentage as set out in the No Fee No Win Agreement you signed, is deducted from the faulty equipment injury compensation you are awarded.
Should you lose your claim, the “success fee” is waived which in short, means you would not have to pay the personal injury solicitor for the legal advice and representation they provided in a faulty equipment injury claim.
If you would like more information regarding your employer’s responsibilities in the workplace towards employees, please click on the link provided below:
For more information regarding the law that covers personal protective equipment in the workplace, please click on the link below:
If you would like more information regarding the provision of use of work equipment, please follow the link provided below: