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Injury Work: How to claim compensation for a workplace injury when your accident happened following your own carelessness

Injury work compensation: find out the effects of your own carelessness on a workplace accident claim - why it is likely you will still win your claim, the risks of reduction in the level of your worker compensation and why you will rarely be seen to have consented to the dangers of injury.

Can you still succeed in a compensation claim against your employer if carelessness on your behalf lead to your injury at work?

In UK law an employer must guard against employees making mistakes, being careless and at times lacking attention.

Injury work

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It is not enough for an employer to say that an employee was warned of a danger and was provided with training - the employer should take all practical steps to eliminate any danger.

For example, a factory workplace has a low pipe at head height on a walkway. Employees are told of the danger and are asked to duck under the pipe every time they walk past. If an employee on one occasion is not paying attention and bangs his head - it is still likely that the employer will be responsible for a claim for compensation.

In this example the employer should have moved the pipe or, if this was too expensive to do, should at least have padded the pipe out in cushioning of bright colours - to make it more visible and reduce the risk of injury.

You can see that a lack of attention or carelessness will not affect your ability to claim compensation from your employer, but it may affect the level of compensation you receive.

When will the level of your compensation claim be reduced in value by your own carelessness?

It may be decided that your carelessness was so bad that your injuries were made worse or would not even have happened had you not been so careless. In such circumstances you can be seen to have "contributed" through your careless act or "negligence" to the severity of your injuries.

This careless act is known as "contributory negligence" and can cause the level of your compensation to be reduced by a percentage.

Always remember that UK law is designed to protect the employee so even if you have contributed to your injury at work it is likely that any reduction in your compensation will only be small.

When will you have consented to the risks of an injury at work?

This is an important question - if you have consented to the risk of injury at work then your employer will not be responsible for paying your compensation.

Thankfully, the health and safety law protecting employees is so strong that it is very rare you will be found as a matter of law to have truly consented to the risks of an injury at work.

In all my years of practice I have not come across a case when an employee had consented to the risk of injury at work.

It really only applies to deliberate conscious risk taking acts by employees - even then it is only normally applicable to skilled employees who knew exactly what the safety consequences of their act would be.

If an employer attempts to deny you compensation for an injury at work by stating you consented to the risks of your injury - do not be put off making a claim as the chances of this defence being successful is extremely slim.

Injury At Work Summary

You now know why you can still claim when your own careless act lead to your injury at work, why an employer's argument that you consented to your injury is likely to be unsuccessful and in what circumstances your compensation could be reduced.

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Click injury work claim to see how to start a an "injury work" claim.