A Guide To Scaffolding Accident Claims

By Stephen Bishop. Last Updated 13th July 2022. Welcome to our scaffolding accident claims guide. Have you been involved in a scaffolding accident that wasn’t your fault and been injured as a result? Regardless of whether you are a construction site worker or a member of the public, if you have been injured due to someone else’s negligence, you may be eligible to make a claim for compensation for a scaffolding accident.

In accordance with UK law, all employers are legally required to have set health and safety policies and procedures actively in place for them to be able to provide a safe working environment. With some industries like the construction industry, it is even more necessary for care to be taken in regards to health and safety as there is naturally a greater risk of an accident taking place resulting in serious injuries or even death.

If you have been injured due to a scaffolding accident that wasn’t your fault, we can help you to file a personal injury claim and get you the compensation you deserve. Just call Legal Helpline on 0161 696 9685 for free help and advice on how to start your claim. Before calling us though, have a read through this guide to get an informative overview of what claiming compensation for a scaffolding accident involves.

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Scaffolding accident claims guide

Scaffolding accident claim

Scaffolding accident claim

This scaffolding accident claims guide has been developed in order to give information regarding making scaffolding accident injury claims and what they involve.

Here, you will find the answers to many of the questions that you may have so that you can make an informed decision as to whether you want to take legal proceedings. Information such as what you should do if you have a scaffolding accident, who is liable for your injuries, what are the common injuries sustained in a scaffolding accident and how do they influence the final settlement figure of your claim, and much more can be found within the guide.

We also explain the benefits of using an experienced personal injury solicitor to conduct your claim on your behalf and explain how our no win no fee policy at Legal Helpline can allow you to get the legal assistance you require without any financial risks.

How common are scaffolding accidents?

According to statistics from the National Access and Scaffolding Confederation (NASC), there was a 27% increase in scaffolding accidents in the workplace in 2019, with a figure of 113. The most common cause of these accidents was slips, trips and falls on the same level, accounting for around 43%.

Fortunately, there remained no fatalities of this nature for the sixth year running. However, this is not to say that they couldn’t happen. If you were injured or a loved one was killed in a scaffolding accident as a result of third party negligence, these circumstances could entitle you to make scaffolding accident claims. To learn more, please read on.

Scaffolding health and safety regulations

The HSE has taken into consideration that scaffolding is a risky occupation especially if care is not taken to ensure things are done correctly when erecting, using or dismantling scaffolding. Therefore, they have designed a specialised checklist that is specific to scaffolders and employers are expected to adhere to all of the checkpoints on the list.

The checklist includes points such as ensuring that there is a level of training and competence reached before erecting or dismantling the scaffolding and to make sure the scaffolding itself is regularly checked and maintained to make sure it is in safe workable condition before using. The HSE checklist can be seen in full by following the link at the end of this guide.

Proving liability in a scaffold accident claim

In order to make successful scaffolding accident claims, you need to first establish who was responsible for the accident and secondly to prove their liability.

In the case of personal injury claims, a third-party can be held liable if they had a duty of care that they were negligent to. As far as legalities are concerned, negligence basically means there has been a failure to act on the duty of care in regards to health and safety legally required to be followed by all businesses, individuals and employers.

Unfortunately, proving this liability, or negligence, can be difficult to do as very often there are numerous parties involved in the erection, use and dismantling of the scaffold and so any one of these could possibly be responsible for your injury. Examples of the different parties that may be involved are:

  • The construction company in charge of the site – They are expected to uphold the necessary health and safety scaffolding regulations in accordance with the construction design and Management Regulations, failure to do so could be seen as negligence.
  • An employee of the construction company in charge – If they individually ignored the health and safety regulations set out by their employer resulting in an accident or if they behaved irresponsibly, then they themselves could be found liable.
  • Materials Manufacturer – If a company supplied the Construction company in charge of faulty materials which resulted in an accident, then they could be liable.

Proving liability is key to successful scaffolding accident claims. If you are unsure who is responsible for your accident, speaking to an experienced personal injury lawyer and discussing the details surrounding your case will initially at this stage be the best course of action to take.

Common scaffolding accidents

Scaffolding accidents are often thought of as being generally a straight forward accident, but actually, this isn’t always true. Scaffolding accidents can happen not only in the workplace but also to members of the public. They may occur due to a whole variety of different reasons:

  • The main cause of scaffolding accidents, mainly among construction employees, are accidents due to slips, trips and falls. Falling off of a scaffold especially from a high height can result in devastating, severe injuries particularly to the back and legs, can cause potential brain damage if a head injury occurs and even death.
  • Accidents that are also common and often involve members of the public are those where an object has fallen off of the scaffold and hit someone. The objects most likely to fall from the scaffold will be tools, roof tiles and other building materials, which due to them often being very heavy, can cause serious injuries in particular head and brain injuries.

Common injuries that are sustained from a scaffolding accident are:

  • Broken or fractured bones.
  • Back Injuries.
  • Leg injuries.
  • Internal and external lacerations.
  • Head trauma and/or brain damage.

Regardless of how the accident happened, if you have been injured in a scaffolding accident and it wasn’t your fault, you may make a claim for compensation. Contact Legal Helpline for further help and advice.

What you can do if you’ve been injured in a scaffolding accident

Due to the nature of accidents, they can often leave you feeling shocked and confused. Therefore, knowing what to do in the event of an accident can be somewhat confusing.

Initially, the first step and most important thing to do is to seek medical attention. Whether it be calling an ambulance or taking yourself to the local hospital, it depends on the severity of your injury.

Once you have received medical care and feel more able, you may consider scaffolding accident claims could help you get the compensation that you deserve. Regardless of whether you were a construction employee or a member of the public, gathering evidence in support of your claim will help to build a strong case ready to take to a claims court. In order to do this, you should try to do the following:

  • Proving liability – This is crucial for your claim to be successful. Make sure your accident has been recorded in the appropriate accident record book with the firm in charge of the scaffolding, apart from being a legal requirement, this is also proof that the accident took place. Also, try to collect witnesses details so that they can be contacted to give a statement of events when your accident occurred.
  • Proving negligence – This can be quite tricky and certainly never straight forward. You will need to look into who or what company was in charge, what their legal obligations are, who owns the scaffolding involved in the accident and who owns the premises on which the scaffold was on and so forth. Look into the regulations that should have been followed and any pitfalls in the duty of care of those in charge that could be classed as negligence.
  • Evidence of injury – You will be required to prove you have an injury resulting from the accident and be able to show the severity and the effect it has had on your quality of life. By seeking medical attention in the beginning, a medical report will have been written stating the nature of your injury, recommended treatments and a long term prognosis. This report can then be used to support your claim.

Another way of ensuring you have the correct support for your claim is to acquire legal help in the form of a personal injury lawyer. If you instruct us to conduct your claim for you, we can investigate the details surrounding your accident in greater depth and make sure that no stone is left unturned. We have years of experience in dealing with these types of personal injury claims and so can make sure that you have a really strong case before heading to court.

Scaffolding accidents at work claims

As mentioned in the above section, successful scaffolding accident claims require strong supporting evidence. These often come in the form of:

  • Documentation of the scene (photographs, videos and the like)
  • Witness statements (typically collected by a solicitor from contact details you obtained)
  • A medical report (conducted by an independent medical expert)

However, in terms of scaffolding accident claims regarding workplace incidents, your case can lose credibility if the accident was not recorded in the employer’s accident handbook. Ultimately, an official record of the accident will carry more value to your claim in the eyes of the law, so it’s imperative that you report the incident to your employer as soon as possible and follow-up on your report to check it’s been logged accordingly.

If your employer’s negligence was responsible for your accident, they could be held liable as part of a worker’s claim. This is normally determined according to whether they failed to uphold their duty of care, resulting in your accident. Typically, your employer’s liability insurance should cover any payout that you subsequently receive. For more information, please speak to our team today.

Scaffolding accident claims as a member of the public

People often mistakenly assume that scaffolding accidents only happen to those who work on construction sites, but this is not the case at all. Although accidents occur more commonly to those on-site, accidents involving scaffolding can also affect bystanders. In this section, we’ll look at how to establish grounds for scaffolding accident claims for members of the public.

In such cases, the injured party may refer to the Occupier’s Liability Act 1957 in order to make a compensation claim. The occupier of any premises must adhere to health and safety regulations that ensure a safe environment for all those who enter their premises, and so if something were to fall off of the scaffold, for example, and injure you, it will the occupier’s responsibility as they should’ve taken necessary precautions in order to prevent anything falling and hitting someone below the scaffold.

An experienced personal injury solicitor from our panel will be able to offer greater clarification on any scaffolding accident claims queries that you have, so please don’t hesitate to get in touch today.

How long do I have to claim compensation?

In the UK, there is a personal injury claims time limit of three years. Basically, this means that you have exactly three years from the date of your accident to start a compensation claim and initiate court proceedings.

However, there are some exceptions to this ruling. Some injuries may appear of time and so trying to pinpoint an actual accident date is not possible, these types of injuries often occur in the workplace such as Repetitive Strain Injuries or Asbestosis for example, and so the three-year time limit will start from the day of the claimant’s diagnosis. Also, where children are involved, the three-year time limit is slightly different and doesn’t start until they turn 18. So, for someone who has been injured as a child, if no-one launched a compensation claim for them, they have until their 21st birthday once they have turned 18 to start a claim for themselves.

In most cases where a scaffolding accident is involved though, an accident date is typically used if the injuries are immediately obvious, so the three-year time limit will start from that date.

When making a scaffolding accident claim, what can it include damages for?

When making scaffolding accident claims, there are a number of things to take into consideration that can be included in your claim, such as:

  • General Damages – This part of the compensation award is made up of the physical and psychological aspects of your claim and will be greatly influenced by the type and severity of your injury and its effects on your quality of life and well-being. The more severe the injury and impact on your quality of living, the higher the compensation award amount will be.
  • Medical Costs – Any medical costs you have incurred directly as a consequence of your injury will need to be included. These may be private treatments, prescription fees, specialised medical equipment etc.
  • Travel costs – Any travelling costs incurred due to your accident can be included, as can the costs of any essential vehicle adaptions. As long as the costs are of a direct consequence of your injury they can be included.
  • Care Claim – If you have needed extra care and help around the home, you can also launch a care claim.
  • Loss of earnings – Any loss of earnings should be recovered in your claim including any potential future loss of earnings or promotional benefits etc.

In order to include the extra costs that you incurred as a result of your injury, proof of payments must be provided. So, it is really important to keep all records and receipts of monies paid out due to your injury.

Scaffolding accidents – example compensation payouts

The amount of compensation that may be offered for claims for scaffolding accidents varies from one person to the next, as no one case is the same. Therefore, it’s difficult to present an average compensation figure that may be offered following work incidents such as a scaffolding collapse accident.

However, in the table, we’ve included some compensation brackets taken from the latest Judicial College Guidelines. These guidelines are based on compensation awards given for past court claims.

Reason for CompensationCompensation BracketComments
Severe Back Injuries (i)£91,090 to £160,980Damage to spine and nerves, resulting in severe pain and incomplete paralysis
Severe Pelvis or Hip Injury£78,400 to £130,930Extensive fractures involving severe pain and often requiring spinal fusion
Severe Knee Injuries (i)£69,730 to £96,210Joint disruption, osteoarthritis, ligament damage and a long treatment process
Moderate Leg Injuries£27,760 to £39,200Complicated or multiple fractures, such as crushing injuries
Arm Injuries£6,610 to £19,200Simple fractures of forearm
Moderate PTSD£8,180 to £23,150Recovery expected with no severe ongoing trauma symptoms

Each case will be treated on its own individual basis of circumstances and so we must be clear in saying that these amounts are averages and by no means a guarantee of what amount you may be awarded.

Scaffolding accident no win no fee claims

Legal Helpline offers a no win no fee policy. In basic terms, this simply means that we only ask for a payment, if we win your case for you, if we do not win, we do not charge you any fees and will not be expected to pay us anything at all.

No win no fee is another name given for a Conditional Fee Agreement. This agreement outlines our professional relationship and the responsibilities we have as your legal representatives, as well as the expectations we have of you as our client. It also states that no monies will be paid to us unless we win your case for you. In these circumstances, your fee will be taken as a small percentage, which is a legally capped deduction from your final settlement award.

With our no win no fee policy, there are no upfront costs or in fact any costs during the whole process and so allowing you to have fantastic legal representation without any of the financial risk often associated with personal injury claims. By using our service, you not only dramatically increase your chances of a successful outcome, but also you get to hire legal help without the worry and stress of any negative effects on your current finances.

Why claim compensation with Legal Helpline?

The panel of solicitors at Legal Helpline have been specialising in the personal injury claims industry for many years and have a wealth of experience in handling scaffolding accident injury claims.

We offer fantastic customer service and always strive to get the best results for our clients with every single claim that we take on. We are a reliable, honest and friendly team that put your health, quality of life, and well-being as the focal point of the claim to make sure that we get you the maximum compensation award that we can for you.

A sincere and emphatic approach is something that we feel is incredibly important when dealing with personal injury claims as we understand that you may be experiencing a very painful and traumatic time at the moment and so want to make the claiming process proceed as smoothly and as quickly as possible so that you can concentrate on your recovery.

If you choose us to be your legal representatives, you can rest assured that your claim will be in the best hands and will be dealt with in a professional and timely manner with the aim of getting you the compensation you deserve.

Call Legal Helpline today

If you’d like help and guidance making scaffolding accident claims, please call Legal Helpline today on 0161 696 9685.

We will offer you a free, no-obligation, consultation where you can freely discuss your claim, asking as many questions in regards to your claim as you wish. We will also use this time to gather the facts surrounding your case from you so that we can make an informed decision as to whether we think you have a valid case.

If you have a legitimate case, we will offer to take on your case for you and proceed with your claim on your behalf under a no win no fee agreement.

We may also offer you a free local medical if we feel this could be of benefit.

Scaffolding Accident Claims FAQs

Here are some common queries about scaffolding accident claims.

Additional helpful guides

Scaffolding checklist

This link leads to the HSE website and gives details of the scaffolding checklist as mentioned earlier in the guide.

Health and Safety Executive

The HSE site explains what the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 is and what is included in the legislation.

Thanks for reading our scaffolding accident claims guide.