UK solicitor explains how to claim compensation if you have suffered a burn injury at work.
Burn Accident Victim Question
I work as a kitchen porter in a restaurant in London. Last Saturday the chef asked me to put some plates in the dishwasher as I was picking the plates up close to the position that the chef was working the chef put some frozen food into a pan filled with oil. This caused the oil to explode out and burn my forearm.
The chef apologised and cold water and a bandage was applied. After I finished work, my forearm was causing me a lot of pain, so I went to A & E and was diagnosed with third degree full thickness burns.
I have been told this will likely a scar. The burn is quite large – 3 inches by 1 inch and is unsightly.
The chef and I both work for the restaurant chain.
Can I claim compensation for my injury and if so how can you calculate the amount of compensation my claim could be worth?
Work Accident Solicitor Response
From the description you have supplied it seems that the chef was negligent in attempting to frozen food into a pan of oil when you were close by.
Your employer is liable for the “torts of its servants” – in other words an employer is responsible for negligence of its employees.
On this basis – I believe you would have a strong claim for compensation from your employer.
To determine the amount of compensation your claim could be worth a process must be followed. A solicitor acting on your behalf will obtain a medico legal report from an appropriate medical expert. Here the most likely suitable expert would be a plastic surgeon. This expert will produce a report after having examined you and inspected your medical notes.
The report will set out primarily three things: what your injury was at the time of the accident; what your symptoms are at the time of the examination and very importantly what the future holds for your recovery as well as any likely ongoing disability and scarring.
Based on this report your solicitor can compare your injuries to those decided by the courts in the past for similar injuries and come to a range of values for your pain and suffering, known as general damages.
In addition – you would be entitled to compensation for all of your financial losses (both past and future) as a result of your accident. These might include: lost income, medical expenses, care and assistance in the home; disadvantage on the open labour market, etc. these losses are known as special damages and are added to general damages to give the overall amount of compensation you can claim.
To see an article I have written giving examples of compensation amounts for scarring click compensation amounts for scarring.