Learn How To Make A Hot Drink Burn Injury Claim

By Stephen Bishop. Last Updated 16th April 2024. Welcome to our guide on how to make a hot drink burn injury claim. In this guide, we discuss when you can make a hot drink burn injury claim. Our guide can be used by customers who’ve been scalded or burnt by a hot drink in a cafe, restaurant, bar or fast-food outlet and the information provided could be useful for staff injured in a similar way. Claims can only be made if the injuries were caused by the negligence of a business owner, or their staff. Therefore, we look at different scenarios which could lead to a hot drink burn injury claim against the responsible party.

A woman's hand with multiple burn injuries

Legal Helpline assists anybody who is considering filing a personal injury claim. We do this by providing free legal advice on the claims process. Furthermore, we offer a no-obligation assessment of your claim. If there’s a chance the claim can be won, we would connect you with a No Win No Fee solicitor from our panel.

If you’re ready to begin a claim straight away, you can call us on 0161 696 9685 today. Alternatively, to understand more about claiming for a skin burn injury, please continue reading.

Jump To A Section

  1. What Is A Hot Drink Burn Injury
  2. How To Make A Hot Drink Burn Injury Claim
  3. Hot Drink Burn Injury Claims Calculator
  4. Special Damages You Could Claim For A Burn Or Scald
  5. What Evidence Can Help A Claim For A Hot Drink Burn?
  6. How To Make A Hot Drink Burn Injury Claim On A No Win No Fee Basis
  7. Burn Injury Claim Resources

What Is A Hot Drink Burn Injury?

The type of injury we’re discussing in this guide are burns or scalds caused by hot drinks. However, to be eligible to make a claim, the accident and subsequent injury need to have been caused by somebody else’s negligence.

  • For instance, if you suffered hot coffee burn injuries because a waiter dropped the cup as they were placing it on your table, you might be eligible to claim.
  • Another example could be where you slipped on a floor that had just been cleaned and was burned by hot tea because there were no warning signs in place to alert you to the danger.

The number of different scenarios in which you could make a burn personal injury claim is quite extensive, so we won’t be able to discuss them all here. However, so long as you can show your suffering was caused by third-party negligence, you could be entitled to begin a hot burn injury claim against them.

How To Make A Hot Drink Burn Injury Claim

In different scenarios of your life, you are owed a duty of care by specific parties. Examples include the following:

  • Public areas – When you’re in public places, such as a café or restaurant, you are owed a duty of care by the controller of that space. The Occupiers’ Liability Act 1957 establishes that those responsible for a public space should ensure the reasonable safety of anyone who enters it. So, if, for instance, you are asking, “I got burned at a restaurant, can I claim?” you may be eligible to do so if this duty of care was breached and it led to your injury.
  • At work – The Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 establishes that employers owe their staff a duty of care. As part of this duty, they should take reasonable steps to protect their employees from harm while in the workplace and performing their duties. If an employee is hurt by burns from a hot drink while at work, they may have grounds to claim if they can prove that their employer breached their duty of care in some way, and this contributed to the incident.

For more advice on your eligibility to make a claim for burn injuries caused by a hot drink, contact our team of advisors for free today.

How Long Do I Have To Claim For A Hot Drink Burn Injury?

Under the Limitation Act 1980, there’s a three-year time limit for starting a personal injury claim. This normally begins from the date your injuries occurred.

The time limit can work differently in certain scenarios. For example, if the injured party lacks the mental capacity to claim, then the time limit is frozen indefinitely. A litigation friend could claim for the injured party instead. However, if the injured party later recovers their mental capacity and a claim hasn’t been made, then the three-year time limit will start from the day of recovery.

If the injured party is a child, the time limit for starting a claim will begin on their 18th birthday. A litigation friend could claim on the injured child’s behalf before they reach that age. If this doesn’t happen, the injured party will have three years to make their own claim once they turn 18.

For more advice about your eligibility to claim, contact our advisors today. They can answer other questions you may have such as “I got burned at a restaurant, can I claim?”

Hot Drink Burn Injury Claims Calculator

A compensation payout for a successful burn injury claim could include general damages and special damages. General damages compensate you for the pain and suffering caused by the injuries you are claiming for.

The table featured below includes some of the compensation guidelines found in the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG). This document may be used by those valuing your burn injury claim for general damages, since it lists various types of injuries alongside guideline compensation brackets.

The table below should be viewed as a guide only. Also, the first entry in this table is not taken from the JCG.

Injury TypeSeverityRangeFurther Information
Multiple Serious Injuries Plus Special DamagesSeriousUp to £250,000+If you have sustained multiple serious injuries (physical and/or mental) following an accident involving a hot drink, then your potential claim could lead to a payout that covers all injuries plus related special damages, such as loss of earnings.
Scarring (to other parts of the body)Significant burnsLikely to exceed £127,930Burn injuries which result in significant burns that cover more than 40% of the body could fall into this bracket. Factors consider include body area affected, the thickness of the burns, cosmetic impact, amount of surgery, physical disability and the psychological impact.
Scarring (to other parts of the body)A number of noticeable scars£9,560 to £27,740Cases of a disfiguring scar of the leg, arms, hands, chest or back could fall into this category.
Scarring (to other parts of the body)One noticeable scar£2,890 to £9,560One noticable scar or multiple superficial scars of the hand, arm or legs with minor cosmetic effect.
Facial DisfigurementVery Severe£36,340 to £118,790This category covers very severe scarring to the face in younger claimants (teens to early 30s) where there's a severe psychological reaction as well as very disfiguring cosmetic effect.
Facial DisfigurementSignificant£11,120 to £36,720Cases where the worst effects can be reduced by plastic surgery. There will still be some cosmetic effect but the pyschlogical effect won't be great.
Facial DisfigurementTrivial £2,080 to £4,310Cases where the effect is minor.

Get in touch with our advisors for free today if you have a question such as “I got burned at a restaurant, how much is my claim worth?” or if you want to learn more about other parts of the claiming process.

Special Damages You Could Claim For A Burn Or Scald

If you’re claiming because you’ve been burned by a hot coffee or any other hot beverage, your solicitor can claim for both general damages and special damages when filing a personal injury claim against a responsible party. The burns compensation table in the previous section covered general damage payments. That is the compensation you receive for pain and suffering as well as any loss of amenity.

Special damages, however, are paid to cover any financial expenses you incurred due to your injuries. Here are some examples of special damages you could claim for:

  • Travelling Expenses. When you have to visit a hospital or your GP for treatment, you could incur fuel costs and possibly parking charges. Also, if your injuries prevent you from driving, you might have to pay for alternative travel arrangements. In either case, these costs could be claimed back
  • Medical Costs. In most cases, any remedial treatment will be provided for free by the NHS. However, you could still end up paying for prescriptions and over the counter treatments. As a result, you could ask for these expenses back. You may also require private treatment/therapy which you could also claim back in a successful hot drink burn claim
  • Care Costs. Should you require assistance while recovering, you could claim back any associated costs. For instance, you could claim for the time of a loved one who looked after you. Also, a professional carer’s fees could be claimed
  • Damaged Property. If any item of personal property was damaged because of the accident in which your skin was burnt, you could ask for the cost of replacing the item. For instance, if the hot drink ruined your clothing or mobile phone, you could claim to replace them
  • Lost Earnings. Should you require time off work as a result of your injuries, but that means you lose income, then you could claim this back. Also, for longer term injuries, future lost earnings could also be claimed

Fire burning in a dark area

What Evidence Can Help A Claim For A Hot Drink Burn?

If you want to claim because you’ve suffered a scald injury in a cafe or restaurant, you’ll need to provide sufficient evidence. This needs to demonstrate what happened, who could be to blame and what injuries you sustained. Therefore, you could use evidence such as:

  • Medical reports from the doctor who treated you
  • Witness statements
  • Photographs of the accident scene including the root cause where possible
  • CCTV footage if available
  • Accident book entries (businesses are obliged to log incidents if you inform them of the accident)
  • Photographs of your injuries

All of the above helps your solicitor prove your claim. Medical records would show what injuries were sustained and the treatment you received. Accident books are used to confirm dates, times, people involved, and any advice provided. Therefore we always advise that any injured party reports an accident and seeks medical support even if they are not thinking about filing a personal injury claim against the responsible party.

How To Make A Hot Drink Burn Injury Claim On A No Win No Fee Basis

If you’re still undecided whether to claim because you’ve been burnt by a hot drink, one of the things you might be considering is the cost of doing so. However, our panel of personal injury solicitors wants people to claim without worrying about the costs involved.  That’s why, if they take a case on, they’ll work on a No Win No Fee basis.

To begin with, an experienced personal injury solicitor would check your claim has a chance of being successful. If they believe it does, and you’re happy to proceed, you’ll be given a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA) to sign. The CFA is your contract and it’s another name for a No Win No Fee agreement.

Important information that you’ll find in the CFA includes:

  • A statement that confirms you only have to pay solicitor’s fees if you are awarded hot drink burn compensation
  • Details about the success fee that’s payable when a claim is won
  • The Terms and Conditions of the agreement

A success fee is used to cover the solicitor’s fees when your case is won. Rather than you having to pay the fee from your own funds, it’s deducted automatically from your compensation. Success fees are expressed as a percentage of your compensation.

You can find out whether your claim is suitable for a No Win No Fee service by speaking with our team today.

There are a number of ways to contact us. These are:

  • Calling our advisers on 0161 696 9685 for free claims advice
  • Asking us to call you back by completing our online enquiry form
  • Or you could use our live chat feature to discuss your claim with an online adviser

Remember, our advisers provide free legal advice and there’s no obligation to proceed. Therefore, you’ve got nothing to lose by calling us today about your hot drink burn injury claim.

Burn Injury Claim Resources

You’ve now reached the end of our guide about making a hot drink burn injury claim. If you require any further information, please don’t hesitate to ask. In the meantime, here are links to a few more of our guides and some additional resources that might prove useful.

Catering And Hospitality Safety – Information, from the Health and Safety Executive, about safety in restaurants, fast food outlets, cafes, pubs and clubs.

Katie Piper Foundation – A UK charity that can support burns survivors as they recover from their injuries.

The Food Standards Agency – Information and guidance on all aspects of food and drink safety in the UK.

Burn Injury Claims – This guide provides a more generic look at how different burn injuries and scald injuries can be sustained.

Milk Allergy Claims – A guide that explains when you could make a personal injury claim because you’ve suffered a reaction to milk due to inadequate allergen advice.

Claiming For A Permanent Scar – This guide provides information on how a personal injury lawyer could help you claim for a permanent scar which could apply if you’ve been burned by a hot drink.

Thank you for reading our guide on how to make a hot drink burn injury claim.