Council Compensation Claims

We work in partnership with National Accident Helpline, the UK's leading personal injury specialists.

Council Compensation Claims

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Not sure if you have a valid claim? Contact us for free advice, with no obligation to proceed.

Council Compensation Claims

No win no fee guarantee

No win no fee* takes the risk out of making an injury claim. If you lose your case, you don't pay a penny.

Council Compensation Claims

Talk to the experts

We work in partnership with National Accident Helpline, the UK's leading personal injury experts.

Council Compensation Claims

Free, no obligation advice

Not sure if you have a valid claim? Contact us for free advice, with no obligation to proceed.

Council Compensation Claims

No win no fee guarantee

No win no fee takes the risk out of making an injury claim. If you lose your case, you don't pay a penny.

Council Compensation Claims

Talk to the experts

We work in partnership with National Accident Helpline, the UK's leading personal injury experts.

PPE Claims

Personal protective equipment (PPE) is essential in many jobs, such as construction, agriculture, mining, metalworking and healthcare. Without it, employees may be exposed to various risks and hazards like falling from a height, toxic substances, falling objects, noise and electrical hazards. A lack of PPE can cause injuries and illnesses such as hearing damage, broken bones, brain injuries and respiratory issues.

PPE includes gloves, masks, respirators, hearing protection, safety harnesses and hard hats. Employers have a legal duty to provide adequate protective equipment to employees, ensure they know how to use it, and keep it properly maintained and safe for use. If you suffered an injury due to your employer’s failure to protect your safety, you may be able to make a PPE claim for personal injury compensation.

If you would like to discuss your case with an experienced legal adviser, please call 0800 678 1410 today or use our online claim form to request a call back. They will offer you a free case assessment and answer any questions you have about the claims process.

What is personal protective equipment (PPE)?

Personal protective equipment refers to specialised clothing and equipment designed to protect workers from workplace hazards and prevent injuries, illnesses, and fatalities. The PPE acts as a barrier to reduce the risk of exposure and provide a layer of protection. It encompasses a wide range of items designed to protect different parts of the body and mitigate various types of hazards, such as:

  • Head protection, such as hard hats and bump caps, to protect the head from falling objects, impacts, and electrical hazards;
  • Eye and face protection, such as safety glasses, goggles, and face shields, protect the eyes and face from debris, chemical splashes, and other hazards;
  • Respiratory protection, such as masks and respirators, to filter out airborne contaminants, dust, gases, vapours, and fumes;
  • Hand protection includes gloves that protect against cuts, abrasions, chemical exposure, and high temperatures;
  • Body protection, such as coveralls, aprons, and chemical-resistant suits, provide full-body coverage against chemical splashes, dust, and contaminants;
  • Foot protection, including steel-toed boots and chemical-resistant boots against crushing, impacts, punctures, and chemical exposure;
  • Hearing protection, such as earplugs and earmuffs, reduces exposure to noise and prevents hearing loss;
  • Fall protection, including safety harnesses, lanyards, and safety nets, to prevent falls from heights and protect workers working above ground level.

Employers are responsible for assessing workplace hazards and providing adequate PPE to employees. They must also provide training on how to properly wear and care for the PPE to ensure its effectiveness against accidents and injuries.

Am I eligible to make a PPE claim?

A free consultation with a personal injury solicitor is the easiest way to find out if you can make an inadequate PPE claim. Before taking on your claim, they will review your chances of success and check whether:

  • Your employer breached their duty of care towards you by providing inadequate personal protective equipment
  • Their negligence caused you to have an accident at work
  • You suffered injuries or developed a disease or illness as a result

As seen in the section below, there are several pieces of legislation that place a duty of care on employers regarding PPE at work. Your solicitor will refer to these laws to prove a breach of duty and your employer’s liability for your injuries. They will also help you gather all the evidence you need to support your case and make a successful claim for compensation.

PPE compensation claims

What is the law on personal protective equipment?

The pieces of legislation that are most relevant in PPE compensation claims are:

All employers have a duty of care towards employees under these laws to ensure, so far as reasonably practicable, their health, safety, and welfare at work. Their responsibilities include:

  • Assess the workplace to identify hazards that may require the use of PPE to keep employees safe from injuries;
  • Following the risk assessment, select appropriate PPE that effectively protects from identified hazards;
  • Ensure the selected PPE is suitable for the specific tasks and risks involved;
  • Provide the protective equipment free of charge and ensure it is adequately maintained and replaced as needed;
  • Provide employees with information, instruction, and training on the correct use, maintenance, and storage of PPE;
  • Ensure that workers use PPE correctly and consistently while performing tasks that expose them to hazards;
  • Regularly review and update the risk assessments, PPE selection, and training programs to ensure that they remain effective.

If you were injured at work due to your employer’s failure to comply with the legislation, you might be able to make a personal injury claim for compensation.

What jobs are most at risk of injury from inadequate PPE?

Any job that involves exposure to hazards such as working at a height, dangerous chemicals, or dust puts employees at risk of injury or illness. Employers must ensure they receive the correct PPE for the job to protect their health and safety. Some of the most vulnerable occupations that are seen in lack of PPE claims include:

  • Construction workers. People working on building sites face many dangers, such as falling from high places, being hit by objects, loud noises, and electrical shocks. They need special gear like hard hats, safety glasses, gloves, strong boots, and safety harnesses to stay safe.
  • Healthcare workers. Doctors, nurses, and other healthcare providers face many risks, such as germs, needlestick injuries, and exposure to chemicals. They must use adequate PPE to protect themselves, such as gloves, goggles, special gowns, and masks that cover their nose and mouth.
  • Manufacturing workers. Individuals who work in factories are at risk of machinery accidents, breathing in harmful chemicals and hearing damage due to loud noises. They need PPE like safety glasses, ear protection, breathing masks, and gloves to be safe from injuries.
  • Agricultural workers. People who work on farms are exposed to hazards such as machinery accidents, chemical exposures, falls, and injuries from handling livestock. PPE such as gloves, goggles, ear protection, and protective clothing can protect them from injuries.
  • Mining workers. Miners can face dangers like cave-ins, explosions, and breathing in poisonous gases and dust. Employers must provide PPE such as hard hats, masks to breathe through, gloves and goggles to protect their health and safety.
  • Welders and metalworkers. Workers in these industries are exposed to hazards such as sparks, molten metal, UV radiation, and fumes. They keep safe by wearing special helmets that cover their face, gloves, aprons and masks to breathe through.
  • Emergency workers. Firefighters, paramedics, and police officers must deal with dangerous situations like fires, hazardous materials, and physical injuries. They must be equipped with special equipment such as firefighting suits, helmets, gloves, and masks to be as safe from injury as reasonably possible.

What accidents could inadequate PPE cause?

Suitable PPE is required in many workplaces to keep employees safe from accidents and injuries. Without it, various accidents can occur and injure workers, such as:

  • Slips, trips, and falls. Workers are at risk of slips and trips due to wet floors and other hazards without adequate protection, such as non-slip footwear or surfaces. These accidents can result in injuries such as sprains, fractures, or head trauma.
  • Falling from a height. Harnesses, guardrails and other fall protection equipment are essential when performing tasks at elevated heights. Without it, workers may fall and suffer severe injuries such as fractures, spinal injuries, or even fatalities.
  • Being hit by objects. Without head protection like helmets or hard hats, workers may be struck by falling objects or debris. Such incidents can result in head injuries, brain injuries and fractures.
  • Machinery accidents. Inadequate safety guards or failure to use protective equipment can lead to crush injuries, amputations, or severe trauma to limbs and body parts due to machinery accidents.
  • Electric shocks. Workers may be exposed to electric shocks or electrocution when working on or near electrical equipment without proper electrical PPE, such as insulated gloves or protective clothing. This can result in burns, cardiac arrest, or even death.
  • Exposure to unsafe noise levels. Hearing protection, such as earplugs or earmuffs, is essential in noisy work environments. Without it, employees may develop hearing loss or tinnitus over time.
  • Chemical exposure. Workers in various settings may come into contact with hazardous chemicals or substances. Without proper PPE, such as gloves, goggles, or masks, they may suffer burns, skin irritation, respiratory problems, or other long-term health issues.
  • Biological hazards. Without appropriate PPE, such as gloves, masks, or gowns, healthcare workers may be exposed to germs that can cause severe illnesses.

Injuries leading to PPE compensation claims

A lack of adequate PPE at work can lead to various injuries and health issues for which you could claim compensation. These will depend on the specific hazards present in the workplace and include:

  • Head injuries. Workers may sustain head injuries from falling objects or accidents without proper head protection, such as helmets or hard hats. These can range from minor cuts and bruises to severe traumatic brain injuries.
  • Back injuries. Lack of back support or lifting equipment at work can lead to strains or sprains in the back. Other defective or inadequate PPE can lead to more traumatic injuries and spinal damage, with potentially devastating consequences.
  • Eye injuries. Without proper eye protection, such as safety goggles, workers are at risk of eye injuries from flying debris, chemicals, or other hazards. Such accidents can result in scratches, burns, or even permanent vision loss.
  • Respiratory issues. A lack of masks or respirators can expose workers to harmful substances like dust or fumes, leading to respiratory problems like asthma, bronchitis, or asbestosis.
  • Burns. Without suitable PPE against heat or flames, workers may sustain burns from hot surfaces, fire, or exposure to hazardous chemicals. They may suffer varying degrees of burn injuries that require medical treatment and care.
  • Noise-Induced Hearing Loss (NIHL). Hearing protection, such as earplugs or earmuffs, is essential to protect employees from exposure to loud noises or machinery. A lack of protective equipment can lead to permanent hearing impairment or tinnitus.
  • Sprains and strains. Without ergonomic support or proper lifting techniques, workers are susceptible to sprains and strains in the muscles or joints. This can lead to chronic pain, inflammation, and reduced mobility.
  • Cuts and lacerations. Workers are vulnerable to cuts and lacerations from sharp objects or tools without proper hand protection like gloves. These injuries can range from minor cuts requiring simple first aid to deep lacerations that may need stitches and cause permanent scars.
  • Fractures and dislocations. Inadequate fall protection or safety measures can result in workers falling from heights, leading to fractures and dislocations. Such injuries can have long-term effects on mobility and cause chronic pain.
  • Cancer. Exposure to carcinogens or hazardous substances without appropriate protective measures can increase the risk of developing cancer among workers. The most common work-related cancers include mesothelioma from asbestos exposure and skin cancer from UV radiation.
  • Repetitive strain injuries. Performing repetitive tasks without proper equipment or rest breaks can lead to repetitive strain injuries like carpal tunnel syndrome or tendonitis. These conditions can cause pain and reduced functionality in the affected area.

PPE claims

Evidence to support a defective PPE claim

If you have suffered an injury due to inadequate PPE at work and want to start a compensation claim, you must be able to support it with evidence. Your solicitor will review all the proof you have collated and help you gather anything else you may need to secure compensation. The types of evidence you could use include:

  • Visual evidence, such as photographs or videos, can help show how the accident happened and any defects in the equipment provided to you. Make sure to take them before anything is moved or replaced;
  • If your accident was caught on CCTV, you have the right to request a copy of the footage. Make sure to do so in a timely manner, as this type of footage is typically deleted within a month;
  • You need medical evidence to prove your diagnosis, the treatments you received and your recovery prospects. Make sure to visit your GP or go to the hospital as soon as possible after an accident to ensure your injuries are treated properly and you make the best recovery;
  • Statements from witnesses to your accident or who can testify to your working conditions and the lack of adequate PPE;
  • Expert testimony from professionals who can assess the workplace conditions and the causal link between the lack of proper protection and your injuries or illness;
  • A copy of an accident report that your employer should enter in the company’s accident logbook. This will make it easier to prove when and where your accident took place;
  • Evidence that your employer has failed to provide appropriate PPE or ensure it is adequate for the job, such as records of PPE inspections, training records and risk assessments;
  • Your statement about why you believe your injury was caused by inadequate PPE and how it has affected various aspects of your life, including the level of pain and suffering you endured;
  • You also need documents related to the financial losses you incurred as a result of the inadequate PPE, such as medical bills, loss of income, or other out-of-pocket expenses.

Could I lose my job if I make a PPE injury claim against my employer?

If you were injured while doing your job due to inadequate personal protective equipment, you have the right to make an accident at work claim. This right is guaranteed by law and should not put your job in danger. If your employer sacks you or retaliates in any other way, you can make a further claim under the unfair and constructive dismissal laws.

Every employer in the UK must hold insurance against personal injuries to employees. If you make a successful claim against your employer, their insurer will pay your compensation award, and they will not be left out of pocket. This should make you feel more at ease about claiming compensation. Furthermore, your claim can help fix issues with workplace health and safety policies and prevent similar accidents in the future.

If your employer fires you, does not pay you, demotes you or forces you to leave your job through any other action, you can go to an employment tribunal for justice. In this case, you must start your claim within three months of being dismissed. The tribunal may order your employer to compensate you, give you your job back or take any other corrective measure it sees fit.

Can I make a PPE claim on behalf of a loved one?

You may be entitled to make an inadequate PPE claim on behalf of your loved one if they cannot start legal proceedings themselves. In such cases, a solicitor can help you apply to the court to be appointed as their litigation friend and pursue a claim in their name. This process is used if the injured party is under 18 years old or an adult who lacks the ability to start a claim under the Mental Capacity Act 2005 (protected party).

Before appointing you, the court will verify that you can make fair and competent decisions about the case and have no conflict of interest with the claimant. You will have several responsibilities if you act as a litigation friend, which include:

  • Act in the best interests of the person you are representing;
  • Make decisions about the legal proceedings;
  • Try to find what the claimant’s wishes and feelings are about the case;
  • Pay any fees requested by the court;
  • Approve and sign legal documents;
  • Instruct solicitors and take legal advice;
  • Help gather evidence to support the accident claim;
  • Consider any settlement offers from the other party.

Becoming a litigation friend can be a long-term commitment, so you should be sure you want to take on this responsibility. Your role will end when the claim resolves, when a minor becomes 18 or if a protected party regains mental capacity. You or another person could also apply to the court for a replacement, but you must have a valid reason.

What is the time limit for starting a personal injury claim?

The time limit to start a defective PPE claim is typically three years after the date of your accident. The claim limitation date is set by the Limitation Act 1980 and can only be extended at the court’s discretion. This is reserved for extraordinary circumstances, so you should always seek legal advice as soon as possible to ensure you can start your claim within the time limit. If you fail to do so, your case will be statute-barred and no longer valid. There are, however, a few exceptions to this time limit:

  • If you developed an injury or illness over time due to inadequate protective equipment, you can start a claim within three years of your diagnosis.
  • If you were under 18 at the time of injury, the three-year time limit will begin on your 18th birthday, from when you have until turning 21 to start a claim.
  • If the injured party cannot handle a claim due to a brain injury or another condition that affects their mental capacity, a litigation friend can start a claim on their behalf at any time.
  • If a loved one died due to a lack of PPE at work, you can claim compensation within three years after they passed away.

How much compensation could I receive for injuries caused by a lack of PPE?

The amount of compensation you could claim for inadequate PPE will depend on various factors. These include the circumstances of your incident, the type and severity of the injuries you suffered, their long-term effects and related financial losses. Your solicitor will work hard to secure the maximum payment on your behalf, which will include two types of damages:

General damages refer to compensation awarded for non-monetary losses that are difficult to quantify precisely. In a PPE claim, these may include:

  • Physical pain and suffering
  • Emotional and mental distress
  • Physical or mental disability
  • Loss of consortium or companionship
  • Reduced quality of life or life expectancy
  • Loss of ability to carry out certain activities as before

Special damages refer to compensation awarded for specific financial losses and expenses incurred as a direct result of the injury or illness. These include:

  • The cost of private medical treatments
  • Prescriptions and physical therapy
  • Loss of earnings due to time off work
  • Loss of earning capacity if you suffered a permanent disability
  • Cost of care and assistance with daily living
  • The cost of travel to and from medical appointments
  • Any other out-of-pocket expenses directly attributable to the injury or illness

Special damages will be calculated based on evidence such as receipts, medical bills and payslips. The award for general damages is based on the guidelines from the Judicial College. You can use our online compensation calculator to see how much you could receive based on the type and extent of your injury.

Can I claim compensation if I lost a loved one as a result of inadequate PPE?

Many jobs put workers at risk of severe injuries or illnesses if employers do not provide suitable PPE. In the most unfortunate cases, an employee may suffer a fatal injury as a result of inadequate protective equipment. If you lost a loved one due to their employer’s negligence and you qualify as their dependent, you might be eligible to make a claim for compensation. Under the Fatal Accidents Act 1976, the following parties can make a dependency claim after the loss of a loved one:

  • Spouses, civil partners and anyone living with the deceased as a spouse for at least two years
  • Former spouses and civil partners
  • Children and other descendants
  • Parents and other ascendants
  • Anyone treated as a child or parent by the deceased
  • Siblings, aunts and uncles

A dependency claim will generally include several areas:

  • The financial benefits expected from your loved one, such as income, pensions, bonuses, investments and any other sources of earnings;
  • The loss of services your loved one provided, such as doing household chores, childcare, DIY projects and property maintenance;
  • Funeral costs like wreaths, transporting the body to the grave, and the cost of a memorial:
  • The financial losses and out-of-pocket expenses incurred by your loved one due to the injury or illness before they died;
  • A bereavement award for grief and suffering, currently set at £15,120, is available for spouses, civil partners and parents.

Will a personal injury solicitor offer me a No Win No Fee service?

If your case has merit, your solicitor will help you claim compensation on a no win no fee basis. This legal arrangement allows you to start a claim without having to pay upfront legal fees.

With no win no fee, you do not have to pay your solicitor at all if your claim is unsuccessful. However, they will receive a success fee capped at 25% of your compensation if they win the claim. This service gives you access to legal representation regardless of your economic situation and without taking any financial risks.

As part of this arrangement, your solicitor will also take out After the Event (ATE) insurance on your behalf. If your claim fails, the ATE covers the legal fees and expenses incurred during the course of litigation, including the defendant’s costs. You only pay for the ATE insurance premium if your case is successful.

If you would like to start a PPE compensation claim or learn more about the legal process, please call 0800 678 1410 or request a call back. You will receive a free consultation with a legal adviser, with no obligation to proceed with a claim.

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