Last updated 5th July 2023. By Lewis Winehouse. This article will look at how to claim compensation for a scaffolding accident. When you’re in the workplace, your employer has a duty of care towards you. If this is breached, then you could be injured.
If you work in an environment where scaffolding is used, such as a construction site, then your employer needs to take certain reasonable steps to prevent you from being injured. We will take a closer look at these later on in this guide.
If a scaffolding-related accident has resulted in you being harmed, you may be entitled to claim personal injury compensation. Please contact Legal Helpline to learn more. We can offer you free legal advice about claiming. If you have legitimate grounds for scaffolding injury compensation, you could be connected with one of the lawyers from our panel to work on your case.
Please speak to us to see if you can claim:
- Call us on 0161 696 9685
- Request a call back online
- Speak to an advisor using the chat feature in the corner of your screen
Select A Section
- What Could Cause A Scaffolding Accident?
- Types Of Scaffolding Accidents
- What Are The Regulations For Scaffolding?
- Who Is Liable For A Workplace Accident?
- Scaffolding Accident Compensation Calculator
- Why Make A Scaffolding Accident Claim With Legal Helpline
As we have already mentioned, your employer owes you a duty of care. This means that they need to take reasonably practicable steps to ensure your safety in the workplace. The duty of care that they owe is set out in the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1957.
They need to take reasonable steps to prevent injury to workers. Some of the steps that they can take include:
- Providing personal protective equipment (PPE). For example, if a piece of scaffolding comes loose, a worker can be hit by a falling object. If the worker’s employer did not supply them with a hard hat, they could sustain a head injury.
- Workers who construct scaffolding or work on scaffolding should be trained to do so. If training is not provided, then the scaffolding could be poorly constructed, causing a worker to fall from a height and suffer from a broken pelvis.
- Maintain good housekeeping. Although scaffolding structures are often erected outdoors, there are still things that employers can do to prevent hazards from forming. For example, they could ensure that any spills that could result in a slip, trip or fall are cleaned up in a reasonable time.
For more information on how a scaffolding accident could be caused by a breach of duty of care, speak with our team today.
Scaffolding Safety Statistics
Out of the 51,211 accidents reported to the Health and Safety Executive under the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013 in 2020/21, 3,464 occurred in the construction industry. Of these:
- 186 involved being struck with a moving, falling or flying object
- 681 involved falls from a height
- 34 were caused by being trapped by something collapsing or overturning
These statistics don’t show how many of these accidents happened because of or on scaffolding. These statistics relate to reported accidents overall.
Below, we have included some of the kinds of accidents that could occur on scaffolding:
- Trips and falls could occur because of poorly maintained surfaces, clutter and a lack of non-slip shoes.
- Falls from a height could occur if scaffolding is poorly constructed
- A piece of scaffolding could come loose and fall on a worker, causing crush injuries, broken bones or organ damage.
This is not an exhaustive list of the ways in which someone could be injured in a scaffolding accident. If you’re wondering whether your circumstances could entitle you to make a claim, speak with an advisor today.
As we have mentioned, employers must adhere to the HASAWA. However, while this is the central piece of legislation that outlines an employer’s duty of care, there are other laws that outline how employers should act.
One of these laws is the Work at Height Regulations 2005. This states that work carried out at a height should be properly planned and supervised and carried out by someone competent. The following should be considered by employers who plan work at a height:
- Whether any weather conditions could compromise worker safety
- Whether the space is safe to work on
- Could any materials or objects fall and injure someone?
- Whether materials are stored to prevent injury if they’re disturbed
For more information on when you could be entitled to claim after a scaffolding accident, speak with an advisor today.
According to the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974, employers are responsible for taking all reasonable steps to protect their employees from injury when they are at work. In other words, employers owe their workers a duty of care.
An employer can be liable for an injury caused by an accident at work if the accident happened because they breached their duty of care. However, an employee can also be liable for their own injury if it was caused by their conduct.
In some cases, an employee could be considered to have contributed to their own injuries even if they did not have any part to play in the accident happening. For example, they may not be wearing a hard hat which may have prevented a serious head injury when an object falls from above.
Can A Member Of The Public Claim For Scaffolding Accidents?
Section 3 of the HASAWA places a duty of care on employers to those other than the people who work for them. This means that they have a responsibility to prevent members of the public from coming to harm. If you were injured in a public place because of scaffolding accident, and this occurred because of a breach of duty of care, you could be entitled to claim.
Please contact us to see if you are eligible to claim compensation for scaffolding-related injuries. If we believe that your claim could have a good chance of success, our panel of solicitors can work on your compensation claim.
What Is The Time Limit For Scaffolding Accident Claims?
As part of the scaffolding accident claims process, it is important that you take action within the limitation period. Typically, under the Limitation Act 1980, you have three years from the date of the accident to start a personal injury claim.
Under certain circumstances, there may be exceptions made to the time limit. For example:
- If a minor under the age of 18 sustains a personal injury, the time limit is suspended until their 18th birthday. They will then have three years from this date to start their claim, provided one hasn’t already been made for them.
- If a claimant lacks the mental capacity to start their own claim, the limitation period is indefinitely suspended. If they recover the capacity to claim, they will have three years to do so from the recovery date.
A litigation friend may make a claim on behalf of a child or someone who does not have the mental capacity to begin their own claim. However, they must act in the best interest of the claimant and should make fair and competent decisions about their case. The courts can appoint a suitable person to act as a litigation friend to make the claim on behalf of the injured person while the time limit is paused.
If you have any additional questions about the time limits for scaffolding claims, you are welcome to contact our advisors for free at any time.
If a scaffolding accident harmed you, you might be eligible for compensation. If your claim succeeds, you can potentially receive up to two heads of claim.
- General damages could compensate you for the pain and suffering caused by your injuries.
- Special damages could compensate you for unavoidable financial losses associated with your injuries, such as a loss of earnings if you have had to take time off work because of your injuries.
You can use our compensation table in lieu of an accident at work claims calculator to estimate how much compensation you could claim. The table includes estimates for general damages compensation. The brackets are based on the 16th edition of the Judicial College Guidelines, which were updated in 2022.
|Brain and head injury (A) Very Severe||A variety of factors such as general life expectancy, degree of insight, sensory impairment and the degree of physical limitations will affect what could be paid out.||£282,010 to £403,990|
|Brain and head injury (C) (i) Moderate||There is a severe to moderate level of intellectual deficiency as well as impacts on senses such as sight.||£150,110 to £219,070|
|Loss of sight in one eye (E)||Damages may be at the top of the bracket where there is scarring which is not sufficient to warrant its own award.||£49,270 to £54,830|
|Loss of hearing in one ear (C)||If the person also suffers headaches, tinnitus or dizziness the payout could be at the top of the award bracket.||£31,310 to £45,540|
|Bowel injury (E)||Where the person sustained a penetrating injury which affects the bowels.||£12,590 to £24,480|
|Hernia (A)||A hernia injury which causes pain and which limits the person's movement.||£14,900 to £24,170|
|Psychological injuries and illnesses (C) Moderate||The person may have suffered psychological injuries from which they are recovering by the time of a trial.||£5,860 to £19,070|
|Back injury severe (i)||The most severe types of back injuries such as those damaging the spinal cord.||£91,090 to £160,980|
|Back injury severe (ii)||Back injuries which have a special feature such as damage to the nerve roots.||£74,160 to £88,430|
|Back injury severe (iii)||Cases of a fractured disc in the spine.||£38,780 to £69,730|
However, please take the contents of the table as advisory. This is because many different factors can influence the outcome of a compensation claim. If you contact Legal Helpline today, our team can estimate what your compensation settlement could be worth.
There are many advantages to letting us help you claim compensation. First of all, our panel of solicitors has relevant experience taking care of accident at work claims. Secondly, we can give you free legal advice about claiming.
Finally, our panel of solicitors handle claims on a No Win No Fee basis. Read on for more information on what this means.
The Benefits Of No Win No Fee Injury Claims
If you’re offered a kind of No Win No Fee agreement called a Conditional Fee Agreement, then this means that:
- You generally won’t pay a solicitors fee before the claim starts
- You will pay a success fee if you’re awarded compensation. This is a legally capped percentage of your settlement.
- If you’re not awarded compensation, then you don’t generally pay your lawyer for the work that they have done.
You can contact us today to enquire about claiming compensation after a scaffolding accident:
- Call 0161 696 9685 to speak to a claims advisor
- Request a call back online; just fill out our online claims form
- Ask a question using our online advice widget
Construction And Warehouse Accident Claim Resources
Please feel free to read these resources to learn more about making a claim.
Statutory Sick Pay – Government guide
Safe use of ladders and stepladders – an HSE guide
How do I know if I’ve broken a bone? – NHS advice
If you have any more questions about claiming for injuries sustained in a scaffolding accident, speak with an advisor today.
Written by HC
Edited by FS