01744 744400

Dismissed After An Accident At Work? Here’s What To Do

Dismissed After An Accident At Work? Here’s What To Do

What should you do if you're fired after an accident at work

Employers have no legal right to dismiss employees from work because of an accident that wasn’t their fault. If you find yourself in the situation where you have been dismissed following an accident at work or are being threatened with dismissal for seeking compensation for an accident, then you may have cause to pursue a case against your employer.

If you have been dismissed or treated badly after an accident at work, here’s what you should do: 

If you have been dismissed after an accident at work, or are being treated badly, the first thing to do is to seek the advice of a qualified and regulated lawyer experienced in unfair dismissal cases and employment law.

Your lawyer will offer you an initial consultation to establish if your case is valid and discuss the timelines involved and the terms that they can represent you on. Then if a case exists, they will be able to help you to seek the compensation you deserve for the loss you have incurred.

You should also know that: 

  • You should not be treated badly for having an accident at work that wasn’t your fault
  • You should not be dismissed for having an accident at work that wasn’t your fault
  • You should not be fired for pursuing a claim for compensation after suffering an accident from work
  • If you are being treated badly or have been dismissed for having an accident at work or for pursuing compensation for an accident at work, then you may have a case for detriment or unfair dismissal and could be due compensation for what you have experienced.
  • Detriment and unfair dismissal cases have a strict timeline of three months less one day, so seek help from a solicitor at the earliest possible opportunity to ensure your case is timely and inline with the strict legal protocols can be followed.

You have the right to seek legal advice if you are being treated badly or are dismissed after an accident at work that has left you with an injury or illness, however minor they may be. At Hattons Law we have a team dedicated to investigating and securing compensation for unfair dismissal on behalf of our clients in and around the North West of England, and beyond.

Discuss your case with Hattons today 


Dismissed After An Accident At Work?

Being dismissed from work is both a stressful and worrying time. It’s normal to be concerned about your recovery, the impact that losing your job has on your finances and family, and the potential breakdown of the relationship between you and your former employer.

If you have been dismissed after an accident at work, that wasn’t your fault then you should not be penalised and the law is on your side.

Read on to find out more about accidents in the workplace, unfair dismissal surrounding accidents in the workplace, how a lawyer can help you and the simple steps you can take to seek compensation you deserve if you have been dismissed after an accident at work. 


How Are Employees Protected From Unfair Dismissal Following Accidents At Work?

Employment rights for dismissal at work

Both employees and employers are protected by The Employment Rights Act 1996.

Section 94 of the Act specifically details that an employer cannot dismiss an employee unfairly and is required to provide a valid reason for dismissal.

If you have been involved in an accident in the workplace, that was not caused by you or was not your fault, then you have grounds to claim for compensation. If during this process you are fired for pursuing this claim, then you may also have further grounds to make a claim for unfair dismissal. In either case, you could be due compensation for the losses, illnesses and injuries you have experienced. 

Cases for unfair dismissals are automatically considered when there are health and safety concerns, statutory rights are not upheld and flexible working hours are involved in the reasons for firing an employee amongst other reasons.

Therefore, if you were dismissed following an accident at work that occurred due to poor health and safety compliance by your employer or its employees, then you may be able to build a case against your employer and seek compensation.

If however, the accident was a result of your own actions or inactions, or you have injured, or compromised the safety of your colleagues, then you may have committed an act of gross misconduct. In this scenario you may have been dismissed following your employers standard dismissal policies and you may not have a case for unfair dismissal.


How Can A Lawyer Help Me After Being Dismissed Following An Accident At Work?

Lawyers for unfair dismissal

Unfair dismissal Lawyers, like the specialist team at Hattons are experienced in navigating compex legal processes and providing world class representation to those looking for help in recovering the compensation they’re due when they have been unfairly dismissed following an accident at work.

As we said above, the first thing you should do if you have been dismissed after an accident at work is to seek the advice of a qualified and regulated lawyer experienced in unfair dismissal cases and employment law, and here’s why.

Due to the complexity of the laws and processes to follow surrounding employment, and often the reluctance of an employer to admit liability in certain cases, seeking help from a solicitor can save you time, money and undue stress in the long run compared to taking on a former employer for unfair dismissal on your own.

Benefits of working with a lawyer for unfair dismissal claims 

A good solicitor will take the time to explain what is involved in the claims process, expected time frames, estimated costs, and the likely chance of success when pursuing an unfair dismissal case following an accident at work. They will also be able to help by:

  • Making sure you follow the correct steps in the claims process, within the required time frame
  • Being aware of the common pitfalls that may invalidate your claim
  • Ensuring you have necessary documentation to support your case and aid the level of compensation you would be entitled to receive
  • Handling all the communication between you and your former employer in a clear, concise and legally binding manner. This includes:
    • Notifying them correctly of your intention to pursue a case of unfair dismissal
    • Handling negotiation between both parties regarding the amount of compensation sought and any offers or counter offers made
    • Following up with notice of Tribunal proceedings if no agreement can be reached – all while ensuring the correct timelines and statutory protocols are observed.
    • Your lawyer will work to help you get the maximum payout available and keep you informed of the progress of your case throughout in a way that suits you.

What Else Should I Do Following An Accident At Work?

As soon as you have instructed a lawyer, you will be guided through the entire unfair dismissal process from start to finish but if you wanted to help the case move swiftly, the following things are important and may help the strength of your case:

  • Keep a record of any conversations between you and your employer regarding your employment and its termination both while you were in service and after your employment ended.
  • Don’t sign anything that could be seen as your admission of liability.
  • Gather any evidence you have surrounding your case, including:
    • Images
    • Letters
    • Videos
    • Eye witness accounts
    • Keep account of all injury or dismissal related expenses, this will be important when it comes to determining the amount of your claim.

What Can I Claim For Following An Accident At Work?

Following an accident at work, you may experience physical or psychological injuries due that entitle you to compensation. Physical injuries are often the easiest to pursue as they are most visible but the lasting trauma an accident can have on its victims is also an important consideration to make.

If you have had to seek therapy to deal with what happened to you at work then you may be able to make a claim for psychological trauma. Thirdly, you can also claim for any financial costs that the accident has caused for you. This could cover doctors bills, loss of revenue from being away from work. Travel expenses to hospitals etc.

You must have evidence to back up any claims made and your lawyer will be able to help you put together the evidence needed to support your claims in the strongest way possible to give you the best chance of being awarded the compensation sought.


Employers Liability For Accidents At Work

liabilities for accidents at work

Under the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999, employers have a legal duty of care towards their employees. This means that employers are legally required to ensure the safety of their workers while they are at work by putting in place measures to ensure their safety and following other operational and safety guidelines specific to the industries they operate in such as healthcare, manufacturing or construction.

These regulation state that employers are required to: 

  • Take all of the reasonable steps that are needed to make certain employees are free from harm and safe while in the workplace
  • Provide sufficient training to all employees to ensure they minimise their risk of injury carrying out their roles
  • Conduct risk assessments to ensure the equipment used and work procedures followed are safe

It is also a legal requirement that all employers have adequate insurance in place that covers accidents and injuries that happen in the workplace. This means that if you make a claim against your employer following an accident at work, or unfair dismissal, then it’s their insurer that will pay out, not the employer themselves.

Therefore if an employer has failed to seek insurance or failed in their duty to carry out the three steps above and you have been injured as a consequence, and then fired, you can make a claim for compensation.


What Constitutes An Accident At Work?

An accident at work refers to situations that have led to an employee being injured or suffering from an illness due to the environment they work in.

Injuries or illnesses from accidents at work usually occur due to one or more of the following reasons:

  • The way work was organised
  • The way the work was carried out
  • The condition of the premises where the accident happened
  • The condition of the equipment that was being used

Whether your place of work is an office, factory, outdoor space or construction site, or somewhere else, accidents happen. The kinds of accidents at work that employers can experience due to employer negligence in any areas listed above include but are not limited to:

  • Exposure to loud noise
  • Inhaling toxic fumes
  • Being hit by falling objects
  • Slips, trips and falls
  • Repetitive strain injury
  • Machine entanglement
  • Falls from height

If you have experienced any of the above or any other kind of injury due to an accident at work, do get in touch with a lawyer at the earliest possible opportunity.

Discuss your case with Hattons today 


Worried About Pursuing Unfair Dismissal?

Unfair dismissal from work

We’ve all been in the situation where we’ve been negatively impacted by the actions of others but don’t want to cause a fuss, create friction, or rock the boat out of fear for the outcome our actions may cause.

As lawyers, we know that you may be legally entitled to pursue a claim for unfair dismissal if you have been fired after an accident at work that wasn’t your fault and we want to help you feel comfortable doing this by dispelling some of the most common concerns we see from our clients:

I didn’t realise I was entitled to pursue compensation at the time of the accident 

  • As outlined above, there is a three months (less one day) window to start your claim for compensation surrounding unfair dismissal after an accident at work.

I’m worried about damaging relationships with my previous employer or colleagues 

  • All legal cases should be managed confidentially between you and your employers HR or legal department. Nobody else at your place of work should know about your claim unless you tell them as they are bound by confidentiality. If you have instructed the services of a lawyer then you can rest assured that the whole process will be handled professionally without unnecessary agitation. This means it is unlikely you will have to deal directly with your former colleagues and in most cases, if an employer has been found negligent in their duty of care towards you then they will likely recognise that you are due compensation and will be happy to work with your solicitors to find an acceptable agreement.

I’m worried my claim will financially impact the business

All employers are legally required to have insurance in place to cover accidents and injuries in the workplace.  Lots of employers also have insurance to cover employment law claims and, if so, you should not worry that your claim will financially impact the business as it’s their insurers that may be required to pay out in the event your claim is successful.


Related Questions

Is There A Time Limit For Pursuing A Claim For Unfair Dismissal?

time limit for unfair dismissal claims

Claimants have three months (less one day) from the date of the dismissal to start the legal process. You have three years to claim compensation for the injury itself.

This means that if you had an accident at work on the 1st March 2020, you could file for compensation for the injury up to the 1st March 2023 and if you were unfairly dismissed following an accident on the 2nd April 2020, you would then have until 1st July 2020 to pursue a claim of unfair dismissal following an accident at work.

Three years may sound like a long time but it is always advisable to seek legal advice about a claim as soon as possible. The benefits of this are that the details be fresh in your mind which makes it easier to gather valuable evidence to support your claim. A lawyer will also be able to advise you on any legalities that mean your claim could be valid outside of the standard 3 year window, including those outlined below:

Exceptions to the three year rule 

  • When there is difficulty in identifying the exact date of the incident that illness or injury occurred because the symptoms have taken a long time to show. Common examples of this include diseases caused by inhalation of fragments or dangerous chemicals from industrial worksites or hearing loss due to extended exposure to loud machinery. In cases like this, the three year timeframe applies from the date of diagnosis.
  • Secondly, if you were under the age of 18 when you were working and the accident occured, you would need your parents to apply on your behalf or make a claim yourself within three years of your 18th birthday.

Can You Lawfully Get Fired For An Accident At Work?

Simply put, no. It can be unlawful for any employee to be dismissed after an accident at work and if you have been fired after an accident at work, then you may have a case to pursue an unfair dismissal claim against your employer in order to seek compensation for the losses you have experienced.

Find out more about our thoughts and expertise on this subject in our ‘Can you get fired for an accident at work’ article.


Summary

We hope this article has provided you with some simple steps you can take if you have been dismissed after an accident at work. To recap, If you have been dismissed after an accident at work, the first thing to do is to seek the advice of a qualified and regulated lawyer experienced in unfair dismissal cases and employment law. Employers have a legal right to keep you safe at work and you have rights that protect you under the Employment Rights Act 1996 regarding the processes and reasons for dismissal from work.

You should take away the following key points from this article: 

  • If you have been dismissed after an accident at work you should contact a solicitor at the earliest opportunity to establish if you have a case for unfair dismissal
  • You should not be dismissed for having an accident at work that wasn’t your fault
  • You should not be fired for pursuing a claim for compensation after suffering an accident from work
  • If you have been dismissed for having an accident at work or for pursuing compensation for an accident at work, then you may have a case for unfair dismissal and could be due compensation for the losses, illnesses and injuries you have experienced.

Find Out More

If you have been dismissed after an accident at work, you may have grounds for pursuing a case against your employer for unfair dismissal. If you have any questions about this process, the strength of your case, or would like the support and advice of a qualified professional specialising in this area of law, Hattons can help.

To discuss an unfair dismissal at work or how to bring an unfair dismissal claim against your employer please use the contact form here or call 01744 744400 to speak to our legal team specialising in these matters. We will work with you to understand your case in depth so we can work towards securing the best outcome possible compensation for you in the event of a successful claim.

Hattons Solicitors is based in St Helens, Merseyside and the firm has been providing efficient, affordable and high quality legal services to members of the public and the wider business community since 2001. Professional excellence and quality of work is reinforced by our Law Society Lexcel Accreditation, and membership to the Law Society. Our friendly team will always listen to you and your needs before working with you to deliver the approach that best meets your individual needs.

Posted on: 10/Oct/2020 Posted in: Employment Law
Hattons Legal Services Limited registered in England and Wales Reg. No. 09771400
VAT registration number 703425861.
Authorised and Regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority. SRA No 628665.
SEO by Graham SEO