Over 85% of people injured or made ill at work do not recover any form of compensation.
This startling statistic is found in a new report ‘The Compensation Myth’ which is published today.
In the most recent year reported (2012/13)810,000 were injured but only 90,000 successful claims were brought.
The report highlights the myth that has developed that every mishap has a price tag. It demonstrates that a would be claimant needs to show that there has been negligence or breach of statutory duty by an employer- often a difficult to thing to prove.
The report also points out that recent civil litigation reforms have introduced fixed fees for employer liability claims – dismissing the idea that solicitors drag out cases for their own means.
Of the 600,000 people reported ill or are injured because of their job around 25,000 of those are forced to give up work.
The most common injuries at work are ligament and back injuries followed by skin diseases, hearing problems, and injuries from slips and falls.
The report concludes that most injured people are either choosing not to claim or cannot prove their injury is due to someone else’s negligence.
The Association of Personal Injury Solicitors President Matthew Stockwell believes he knows why this is:
‘Unfortunately, employers tend to have the upper hand, as they control the workplace and have all the information on the equipment and systems in place,’ So there will be people who have a need and a right to claim but can’t, which is precisely the opposite of a so-called “have-a-go” culture.’
The report also highlights figures showing a fall in workplace claims in 2012/13 says government figures show a fall in workplace claims from 183,342 in 2002 to 91,115 in 2012/13.
And since that time the government has changed the rules so that successful claimants have to use up to 25% of their damages to pay legal fees which were previously charged to the losing defendant.
The report says that it is now harder to claim compensation than in Victorian times. This is due to recent changes in the law which mean the Claimant must show the employer has been negligent and not just breached a statutory duty.
Mr Stockwell concluded that:
‘There’s a strong likelihood that many injured workers will be put off from making claims for compensation for their injuries entirely, allowing many negligent employers to avoid making amends, and leaving the state to pick up the tab for medical care and any benefits arising from the injury.’
Full details of the report can be found at: http://www.lawgazette.co.uk/5040869.article?utm_source=dispatch&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=GAZ160414
O’Neill Injury Solicitors Comment
The recent changes to the rules on bringing compensation claims have made it much harder for injured people to get the compensation they deserve when they have been involved in an accident which is no fault of their own.