Many self-employed subcontractors assume that workplace injury compensation claims do not apply to them because they aren’t permanent employees. However, that is not the case. Generally, self-employed workers are responsible for their own health and safety while working on sites.
Self-employed subcontractor accident at work claims are not uncommon. The added uncertainty from not being able to work along with the loss of income without sick pay can be extremely stressful. There are instances where you can make a case for compensation if your injuries were caused by someone else’s mistake or negligence.
Any type of accident can cause severe and long-term devastating consequences, so you should seek legal expertise. If you have been injured in an accident, the following information may be useful.
Can I claim if I’m self-employed and injured at work?
In certain industries, it is common for companies to hire self-employed workers to complete certain tasks for various projects.
For instance, construction companies in the building industry are a major trade that require professional employees ranging from plumbers, carpenters, and electricians. Subcontractors tend to sign a contract agreeing to work on the project, and this could take a few months to a year.
While working on projects, the company that hires you has a duty of care to all employees, whether that it is on a permanent basis, freelancers, or contract worker. It is the employer’s responsibility to ensure that the working environment is safe for everyone.
Employers have a duty of care to make sure working conditions are safe by providing personal protective equipment when necessary, adequate training, making use of suitable equipment (such as scaffolding), and following safety guidelines.
By law, subcontractors are entitled to the same health and safety rights as any other permanent member of staff under the Health and Safety Work Act 1974. This means you are, in effect, an employee of the company you are following instructions for and are undertaking a project with.
If you suffer from a work-related injury because your employer failed to implement safety measures, you are entitled to compensation, and you can make a personal injury claim against the company you were contracted to work with.
You may be able to claim compensation for the following reasons:
· Lack of proper equipment to carry out the work or being given faulty equipment
· Insufficient or no training provided prior to starting the job
· Inadequate personal protective gear such as safety goggles and hearing protection, amongst others
· Falls from height
· Slips, trips, and falls due to unkept working environments
What to do if you have been involved in an accident?
If you suffer from an injury while working, always seek medical help. Workplace accidents can be seriously severe, so it is important to check for any minor or major injuries to get the relevant treatment. A medical report can also serve as proof of the accident and will help validate your claim when claiming for compensation.
Soon after the accident, if you are able to do so, you should collect as much evidence as you can. This involves taking photographs of the scene, including any equipment, the surrounding area and anything else that may provide evidence to what contributed to the accident. If possible, photographs of your injuries should also be taken.
Accidents should be reported and recorded in the logbook. Before signing this report, ensure that all details are correct and request a copy of this for the personal injury solicitor. Where applicable, gather the contact details of potential witnesses.
Following medical treatment, you should contact a specialist solicitor to discuss your options for filing a claim for compensation, who will then evaluate the merits of your case.
The law on time limits for self-employed contractor accident claims can be complicated. However, the general rule is that you have three years from the date of the injury to have either settled your claim or started Court proceedings where the injury occurred at work.
The three-year deadline commences from the date that the accident occurred or from the date on which you realised that your injury was associated with an accident in the workplace.
What can be claimed in self-employed subcontractor accident at work claims?
There are several aspects that can affect your life after an accident at work, and you could claim:
· Loss of earnings – if you were required to take time off work due to your injuries, then you can make a claim to recover your loss of earnings for the full duration that you were unable to work.
· Pain and suffering – Any trauma and pain that you have suffered as a result of your injuries should be compensated.
· Loss of amenity- Injuries that prevent you from participating in activities you once enjoyed can lead to mental health issues such as depression. It is the law to ensure that compensation covers any loss of amenity.
· Other financial losses – Reimbursement of medical costs and transportation costs to and from your medical treatment, mobility or support equipment, or any alterations required to your home or vehicle to accommodate your injuries
· Care and assistance – if you required extra help around the house, whether paid or unpaid.
Types of compensation
General Damages – This refers to the amount of compensation you receive for your pain, suffering and loss of amenity.
To calculate this amount, we look at previous cases which are similar to yours, together with guidelines that are issued to Judges who decide the outcome of such claims if they go to Court. Your case will be valued on the basis of your injuries as described by suitably qualified medical professionals.
Special Damages – These are any direct financial losses that you may have suffered as a result of your injuries. Typically, these may include loss of earnings up to the settlement, loss of earnings in the future, medical costs, travel costs or the costs of care provided to you.
It is difficult to estimate the amount of compensation you will receive for your injuries without knowing the full extent of your injuries. There are, however, compensation calculators online that can be used to estimate how much you may be able to receive from your injury compensation claim.
How much does it cost to make self-employed subcontractor accident at work claims?
We will always be 100% transparent about what our charges are, and if we take on your case, we will almost always do so on a Conditional Fee Agreement (also known as a No Win, No Fee basis).
This agreement means that if you do not win your case, you do not pay us any fees at all. If we win the case, we take a small percentage of your compensation, which we will agree with you beforehand, to cover our costs.
We will never ask you to sign anything until you are completely happy with what it is that we are proposing.
How can Wildwood Legal help?
At Wildwood Legal, our core strength is in self-employed contractor accident at work claims claims. We are experienced in helping Claimants make self-employed subcontractor accident at work claims. We aim to give you not only quality aid but flexibility and clarity as we know that these qualities are just as important.
We have acted for people from all walks of life who have been injured at work. From builders to bankers, postmen to plumbers, scaffolders to shop assistants and everything in between, we have acted for them and recovered compensation which was rightfully theirs.
The law relating to self-employed subcontractor accidents at work claims is complicated and can be a minefield for the unwary. We will guide you professionally through every step of the journey and make sure that your injury at work claim is presented in the best possible way to ensure maximum possible compensation.
We are authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority.
We value the opinion of our clients. We will always listen to you and take on board what you say. With 25 years of experience in personal injury law, we can help you with your claim. We always strive to put you at ease and explain the process clearly.
Our aim is to obtain a great outcome for your case, we value the opinion of our clients, and we will always listen to you and take on board what you say. Most importantly, we are on your side.
If you are considering making a self-employed subcontractor accident at work claim against your employer, get in contact with us either email us email@example.com or call us on 01423 209 046 for specialist legal advice.
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