A Guide To Claiming For An Accident During Your Probationary Period

By Lewis Winehouse. Last Updated 31st January 2024. If you have been injured in an accident at work while still in your probationary period, you may be worried about your rights. This guide shall explain what action you could take if you have an accident during your probationary period at work and suffer an injury through no fault of your own. 

Within the sections below you’ll find useful information about your rights as a probationary employee, the responsibility your employer has towards your health and safety at work, and what action you could take. You will also find guidance on potential compensation payouts, as well as information on how to get an eligibility check for your specific situation to see if you could claim compensation. 

If you need any further information on anything contained in the guide below, please do not hesitate to call our helpline on 0161 696 9685.

Accident at work during probationary period

Accident at work during probationary period

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Can I Make A Claim If Injured On Probation?

You could still make an accident at work claim even after being sacked while on probation. However, you will need to prove that you suffered your injury while at work due to your employer breaching their duty of care.

All employers owe a duty of care to their employees. This duty is set out in the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974. Per their duty of care, they must take reasonable steps to ensure your safety whilst in the workplace and performing work-related tasks. Failure to do so could result in you being injured in an accident at work.

What Evidence Do I Need To Claim?

Collecting sufficient evidence could help support your claim. It could help with proving liability and the injuries you suffered. Some examples of the evidence you could use in your claim include:

  • A copy of the report in the accident book. This could provide details on when and how the accident happened.
  • A copy of your medical records stating the injuries you suffered and the treatment you required. This could be used as medical evidence.
  • The contact details of any witnesses to the accident so that they can provide a statement at a later date.
  • Video footage of the accident, such as from CCTV.

If you decide to work with a personal injury solicitor for your claim, they could help you with gathering evidence. Contact our advisors to find out how a No Win No Fee legal professional from our panel could help you.

Personal Injury Claims Time Limit

If you are eligible to make a personal injury claim, you must start the proceedings within the correct time limit. Generally, this is three years from the date of the accident that resulted in your injuries.

However, for certain claimants, there are exceptions to the time limit. These include:

  • Those who lack the mental capacity to make a claim themself. For these claimants, the time limit is indefinitely suspended. During this suspension, a court-appointed litigation friend could make a claim on their behalf. However, should they regain the capacity to claim themself, they will have three years from the date of recovery to start a claim if one has not already been made.
  • Those under the age of 18 at the time of the accident. For these parties, the time limit is paused until they turn 18. Prior to this, a litigation friend could make a claim on their behalf. However, if they reach their 18th birthday and a claim has not been made for them, they will have three years to start one.

Contact our advisors today to discuss your potential claim and receive free advice. They could also help answer any questions you may have, such as “Can I still make a claim after being fired for being sick on probation?” Or, read on to learn more about probation periods.

A man in an orange workers vest lays unconscious on the floor of a warehouse

What Are Workplace Probationary Periods?

A workplace probationary period is, in essence, somewhat of a safety net for an employer. It is a period of time for the employer to assess the employee’s suitability for the role so that they can ensure they have taken on someone who can do the job in question. It is usually mutually agreed prior to a job being offered to a prospective employee. A probation period could be beneficial for an employee too. If they felt that the job wasn’t suitable for them before the end of the probation period, they could potentially walk away from the role without having committed to giving a lengthy notice period.

When Are Probationary Periods Used?

Probation periods are usually used when taking on a new employee, but employers could also consider using them when they are considering a job swap or promotion for an employee. Usually, if an employee was given a probation period for a promotion or transfer within the company, they would not have the right to have their old job back should the probation period not result in them being appointed to the new role.

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Your Rights If You Suffer An Injury At Work

Following an accident at work whilst on probation, you might be interested in knowing your injury at work rights. Whether or not you are on probation does not take away your rights as an employee.

Below we have featured some rights that may apply to your situation if you have been injured in an accident at work during probation:

  • Although you are in your probation period, if you need time off work due to an injury or illness, you have the right to ask about any sick pay schemes. Additionally, you may be eligible for Statutory Sick Pay (SSP).
  • Should you need to go to a medical appointment for treatment or a check-up, you are well within your right to do so.
  • You may have the right to claim against your employer if you were injured due to their negligence.

Get in touch for free legal advice following a work-related injury or about employee rights during probation periods at work.

A construction worker lays injured on the ground as his co-worker calls for help

Calculating Compensation For A Work Accident During Your Probationary Period

If you were to make a successful personal injury claim for an accident during your probation period, your compensation could be made up of two heads. The first is known as general damages, and all successful claimants receive this head.

General damages cover the physical and psychological injuries you endure as a result of your accident, as well as the effect that these injuries have on your daily life.

Those who value this head of claim may refer to the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG) for help. The JCG provides a list of injuries with different severities, and provides a guideline compensation bracket for each one.

In the table below, you can find some examples of these guidelines. Please note that these amounts are not guaranteed and that the first entry in this table has not been taken from the JCG.

Guideline Compensation Amounts

InjuryGuideline Payout BracketNotes
Multiple Serious Injuries And Special DamagesUp to £100,000+A combination of multiple serious injuries and financial losses, including lost earnings and pension contributions.
Serious hand injuries£29,000 to £61,910The hand would only likely retain around 50% of its original use. This could include amputation of several fingers.
Loss of sight in one eye£49,270 to £54,830Complete, with some sympathetic opthalmia.
Moderate leg injuries£27,760 to £39,200Fractures (multiple/complex) or crush injuries could be included here. The employment impact, any residual symptoms, loss of function or degenerative changes would be assessed to calculate claims in this bracket.
Severe finger fracturesUp to £36,740Leading to potential amputation and grip deformity, reduced function and sensation disturbances.
Toe injuries - amputation£29,380 The claimant's big toe has been amputated.
Severe toe injuries£13,740 to £21,070Crush injuries that are severe enough to warrant the amputation of one or two of the toes, not including the great toe.
Significant scarring (face)£9,110 to £30,090Worst effects would have been reduced via plastic surgery. Psychological reaction would not be severe.
Scarring (non facial)£7,830 to £22,730A number of noticeable scars or one single scar that is disfiguring to the arms, hands, legs, back or chest
Serious Shoulder Injuries£12,770 to £19,200Injuries to the brachial plexus and shoulder dislocation. Sensory symptoms could present in the hand and forearm, and grip may be weakened. Soft tissue injuries with permanent intrusive symptoms could fall into this bracket.

 What Are Special Damages?

The second head of your claim is known as special damages. The aim of this heading is to help you recover any financial losses you experienced as a result of your injuries.

For example, if you broke your leg and had to take time off work to recover, this might have caused you to lose out on pay. In this case, you could potentially claim back these lost earnings under special damages.

This head of your claim can also help you recoup the cost of:

  • Travel.
  • Prescriptions.
  • Counselling.
  • Childcare.
  • Help with cooking and cleaning.
  • Mobility aids.
  • Home adjustments.

The list above illustrates a small selection of what you could potentially claim for. You will need to provide evidence of your losses with documents such as payslips, invoices and bank statements.

If you’d like to know more about how much compensation you could receive for a successful personal injury claim, contact our team of friendly advisors today. Or, read on to find out how a No Win No Fee solicitor from our panel could help you seek compensation for an accident at work.

A man in blue overalls is trapped underneath a fallen ladder

No Win No Fee Claims For A Work Accident During Your Probationary Period

A dismissal during your probation period does not stop your ability to begin a personal injury claim. However, you will need to prove that you suffered your injuries whilst at work due to your employer breaching their duty of care.

Our advisors could inform you whether you may have a valid case. If they believe you could, they may connect you with one of the solicitors on our panel. One of them may offer to represent your claim on a No Win No Fee basis with a Conditional Fee Agreement.

When working with a solicitor under this arrangement, you won’t be expected to pay any upfront or ongoing fees for their services. Additionally, if your claim is unsuccessful, you will not have to pay them for the work they have done on your case.

Alternatively, you will pay your solicitor a success fee if they succeed with your claim. This success fee is a legally capped percentage deducted from your compensation award.

To learn more about making a personal injury claim despite being sacked during your probation period, you can contact our advisors. Our friendly team is available 24/7 to help answer any questions and offer free advice.

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Probationary Employee Resources

  • Do You Qualify For SSP? – If you’re wondering whether you could be eligible to claim SSP if you are off work, then this resource may help.
  • Workers Health And Safety – This HSE resource has links to a number of useful pieces of information regarding workers health and safety.

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Guide by JS

Edited by REG