Suffering a slipped disc in the workplace can put you out of action for a considerable length of time. This is one of the more severe back injuries you can suffer and is not only extremely painful but debilitating too. This back injury is often called a herniated or prolapsed disc and it could mean that you need to undergo spinal surgery. If you suffered a slipped disc at work and you need to have time off work to recover from your injury whether you need to have surgery or not, you may be entitled to claim compensation from your employer providing your case meets specific criteria.
To find out whether you can sue your employer for a slipped disc at work and what sort of proof you would need to provide to establish employer negligence, please read on.
- What is a Slipped Disc?
- What Are the Most Common Causes of a Slipped Disc a Work?
- What Should I Do If I Suffer a Slipped Disc at Work?
- What are My Workers Rights Following a Slipped Disc at Work?
- Does My Employer Have Responsibilities in the Workplace?
- What Evidence do I Need to Support a Slipped Disc at Work Claim?
- How Much Compensation Could I Get for a Slipped Disc at Work?
- Can I Claim My Losses and Damages in an Slipped Disc at Work Claim?
- Is It Worth Filing a Slipped Disc Claim Against My Employer?
- What Advantage is There to Working With a Solicitor on a Slipped Disc Claim Against an Employer?
- How Long Do I Have to File a Slipped Disc Claim Against an Employer?
- Could I be Fired If I Claim Compensation for a Slipped Disc at Work?
- Would a Personal Injury Solicitor Offer Me No Win No Fee Terms if I Make a Slipped Disc at Work Claim?
- Informative Links
As previously mentioned, a slipped disc is known by other names which are a herniated disc or a prolapsed disc. It is the lumbar region of the spine that is damaged and when a disc in your spine ruptures, a tremendous amount of pressure is placed on the nerves found in your spine, hence the excruciating pain that you experience when you sustain a slipped disc. Other symptoms you would experience when you suffer this type of back injury could include the following:
- The loss of any sensation because the nerves in your spine are damaged
- An intense pain in the lumbar region of your back (lower back)
- A limited ability to move around
- Shooting pains down your legs – this is referred to as sciatic pain
If you think you may have slipped a disc at work and you experience any of these symptoms, you must seek medical attention as a matter of urgency to prevent any further damage being done to your spine and so that you can receive pain relief medication sooner rather than later.
Anyone can sustain a slipped disc at work and can do so in many ways but the more commonly reported causes of this type of serious back injury are detailed below:
- When lifting or moving heavy items
- Suffering a serious type of trauma after a fall from height
- Inadequate training when it comes to manual handling
Employers in the UK have a legal duty to make sure that all employees and other staff are adequately trained to carry out a job as safely as possible. If during the course of your job, you have to move or lift heavier items, your employer has to ensure that you are trained to do so. Your employer must also ensure that you are provided with the right type of equipment and tools needed to move or lift heavy items in the workplace.
Should your employer not have followed the health and safety regulations regarding manual handling, and you sustain a slipped disc, you may be entitled to file an accident at work claim and seek compensation providing you have enough evidence to prove employer negligence. A personal injury solicitor at www.accidentclaims.co.uk would quickly determine whether your case against an employer would be upheld and once this has been established, they would offer you No Win No Fee terms when representing you.
The first thing you must do if you suspect you have sustained a slipped disc at work, is to seek medical attention without delay. The sooner your condition is correctly diagnosed, the better and the sooner you would be given something to alleviate the pain you may be experiencing. Because this type of back injury is debilitating and extremely painful, the chances are that you would not be able to report the workplace accident yourself but you have the right to ask a trusted colleague to do this on your behalf. You also have the right to check that the information is correctly when you are able to and to correct anything that is not correctly reported in an Accident Book.
When you are able to, you should make sure that the correct procedure was followed after you suffered your injuries which is detailed below:
- That your injury was correctly reported in the Accident Book and if there is no book in the workplace, you can opt to send your employer a personal email detailing the incident and the back injury you suffered or you can send them a registered letter remembering to keep a copy of the letter for your records
- Photos of where you sustained your injuries and if there is CCTV footage, you have the right to request a copy which an employer must provide in a timely manner
- Photos of the back injury you suffered
- A medical report that provides details of the extent of the injuries you suffered
- Written statements from people who saw the incident
- Witness contact details
- Check whether the incident and your back injury is reportable to the RIDDOR and whether a report has been sent to the authority
- Contact a personal injury solicitor who would assess whether you have a strong case against an employer who could be held responsible for the slipped disc injury you sustained in the workplace
If your employer chooses to deny liability, a personal injury solicitor would provide you with essential advice on whether you should pursue your claim for compensation through the courts. It is worth noting that often it only takes a letter from a lawyer for an employer and their liability insurance providers to change their minds and accept liability with 95% of personal injury claims being settled out of court.
If you suffer a slipped disc injury at work, you have specific rights but you would need to prove employer negligence and that you sustained your back injury at work in the last 3 years which is the statutory time limit to filing accident at work claims. With this said, even if you think you may be partly responsible for the back injury you suffered at work, you should still contact a personal injury solicitor because your employer could also be deemed partly liable which is referred to as an employer having “contributory negligence”.
An employees rights following an accident at work in which they suffer an injury or develop a work-related health issues are as follows:
- To seek compensation by filing an accident at work claim against an employer who could have been in breach of their duty to ensure a workplace is safe
- That you would not be sacked because you seek compensation from an employer for a slipped disc injury you suffered in the workplace
Employers cannot treat you unfairly or detrimentally because you seek slipped disc compensation following an accident at work. If you are threatened either with the sack or redundancy by your employer, you should contact a solicitor who would provide essential legal advice on whether their actions could entitle you to file further legal action against your employer.
There are several laws that protect employees and other workers which employers must abide by. If your employer chooses to ignore these laws and the health and safety regulations and you suffer a slipped disc injury at work as a direct consequence, your employer would be held in breach of their legal duty to ensure you were kept safe from injury at work.
Your employer has a duty to ensure the following in the workplace:
- That all employees and other staff are adequately trained to carry out the jobs they are tasked to do as safely as possible without the risk of injuring themselves
- That all tools, machinery and equipment used in the workplace is correctly serviced and maintained in good working order at all times
- That routine risk assessments are done to identify dangers in the workplace
- To set in place all reasonable measures with an end goal being to reduce the risk of workplace accidents from happening
- That all employees and other staff are aware of working procedures and practices
- That personal protective equipment (PPE) is available when needed
If you suffer a slipped disc at work because your employer failed to keep you safe from harm, you should contact a personal injury solicitor at www.accidentclaims.co.uk so they can assess whether you have a strong case against an employer who could be deemed responsible for the back injury you suffered.
For your slipped disc at work claim to be valid, you would need to provide sufficient evidence to prove employer negligence. The incident would also need to have occurred in the last three years and that you were in no way responsible for the injury you suffered. With this said, if you think you could be partly liable, your employer could also be deemed partly responsible which is known as contributory negligence.
The evidence you would need to provide would be as follows:
- Evidence that you suffered a slipped disc whilst you were at work
- You suffered the injury in the last 3 years
- You did not contribute to the incident that left you suffering with a slipped disc
- If you are partly responsible, you would need to show that your employer could also be held partly liable (contributory negligence)
A personal injury solicitor would provide essential legal advice on the type of evidence you would need to provide to support a slipped disc at work claim and would arrange for you to be examined by an independent medical professional so they can produce a report detailing the extent of your injuries and how they impact not only your ability to work, but your daily life too.
The amount of slipped disc compensation you could receive would depend on several factors which includes how your back injury affects your daily life and your ability to work in the future. Personal injury compensation is calculated in two parts which are general damages and special damages with the latter being easier to work out because they take into account your actual expenditure whereas general damages are awarded to compensate you for the pain, distress, suffering and loss of amenity you endured due to the slipped disc at work injury you sustained.
With this said, the level of general damages you could receive are based on the extent of your injuries and the Judicial College Guidelines as indicated below:
- Where surgery is necessary for a prolapsed intervertebral disc or when nerves are affected and as a result there is restricted mobility and a loss of independence, you may be awarded between £19,000 and £28,000
- Where a laminectomy is required for a slipped disc or when a condition is ongoing, you could receive between £8,000 and £20,000
- Where spinal discs are impacted by lesions or fractures, you could be awarded anything up to £50,000
The amounts indicated above are provided as a guideline only and cover general damages you may receive in a successful slipped disc injury claim but on top of this you would receive special damages for the out of pocket expenses you incurred.
As previously mentioned, if your slipped disc injury claim is valid, you would be entitled to claim both your damages (injuries) and your losses (out of pocket expenses). These are awarded as a way of compensating injured parties for the pain, suffering, loss of amenity and the expenditure incurred as a direct result of the injuries sustained.
A slipped disc is an extremely painful injury which can be debilitating and the consequences of sustaining this type of back injury in the workplace could put you out of action for a long time. In short, you may not be able to bring in your normal wage and as such you may have to contend with financial hardship through no fault of your own.
One of your “rights” as an employee who suffers an injury in the workplace, is to seek compensation from an employer who may have been in breach of their legal duty to keep you safe while you are at work. You have the right to file an accident at work claim and be awarded a level of compensation to suit the injuries you suffered at work.
It is compulsory for employers in the United Kingdom to have liability insurance in place and the policy has to be issued by an approved provider. As such, when you seek slipped disc at work compensation from an employer, it is their liability insurance provider who handles your case and it is the insurer who pays out the compensation you could be awarded in a successful slipped disc at work claim.
However, an employer could deny liability which is when a personal injury solicitor at www.accidentclaims.co.uk can assist you by recommending the best way to pursue your accident at work claim against your employer.
What Advantage is There to Working With a Solicitor on a Slipped Disc Injury Claim Against an Employer?
There are many benefits and advantages to seeking legal advice and representation from a personal injury lawyer when seeking compensation from an employer for a slipped disc sustained in the workplace. Proving liability can often prove challenging and solicitors have the necessary expertise in establishing who would be held responsible for you having sustained this type of debilitating back injury.
One of the main advantages is that once an accident at work solicitor is satisfied that you have a strong case against an employer who could be held in breach of the duty to ensure you are safe in the workplace, is that they would represent you on a No Win No Fee basis. This means you can seek compensation without any financial risk. Other benefits that a lawyer would provide includes the following:
- The solicitor would arrange for your injury to be assessed by a specialist and their medical report would be key to calculating the level of slipped disc compensation you may be entitled to receive
- Personal injury solicitors are able to reference legal libraries when researching your claim and can base past successful cases when assessing your claim
- A solicitor working on your behalf would handle all aspects of your claim allowing you to focus on your recovery
- Should your injury be extremely severe and therefore a final settlement takes longer to reach, a personal injury lawyer would negotiate “interim payments” be made to you to avoid financial hardship
- Should you require ongoing, long-term therapy, an accident at work lawyer would ensure the cost of the treatment is included in the slipped disc compensation you are awarded whether through a court or in an out of court settlement
There is a statutory 3 year deadline to filing an accident at work claim against an employer. The time limit, however, may begin at different times depending on several things which are explained below:
- From the time you suffer a slipped disc in the workplace
- From the date a doctor or other medical professional diagnoses you as suffering from some form of medical condition they directly link to the slipped disc injury you sustained at work
- From the date of your 18th birthday should you have slipped a disc prior to this date. As such, you would be entitled to seek compensation by filing a personal injury claim right up until your 21st birthday
You cannot be fired from you job because you file an accident at work claim against an employer because your worker’s “rights” prevent them from doing so. Your worker’s rights include being able to do the following if you are injured at work:
- To file a personal injury claim and to seek compensation if you are injured in the workplace and your employer could be deemed negligent in their legal duty to ensure you are safe at work
- That your job is secure and that you would not be treated unfairly or detrimentally because you seek compensation from an employer
Would a Personal Injury Solicitor Offer Me No Win No Fee Terms if I Make a Slipped Disc at Work Claim?
A personal injury solicitor would be happy to represent you on a No Win No Fee basis providing you can show that you sustained a slipped disc at work and that you have enough evidence to show that your employer failed to keep you safe whilst you were at work.
In short, you would be able to seek compensation without any financial risk to yourself and the only time you would have to pay for the legal advice and legal representation that a personal injury solicitor provided when you are awarded the slipped disc compensation you seek and the amount known as a “success” fee is deducted from the money you are awarded. If you lose your claim, there would be nothing for you to pay the personal injury solicitor who awarded you because they signed a Conditional Fee Agreement with you.
For more information about treatment options for slipped disc injuries, please follow the link provided below:
If you suffered a slipped disc at work and would like more information regarding the recovery time for this type of serious back injury, please click on the link below:
For more information regarding your employee rights in the workplace, please follow the link below: