Accident caused by co-workers
A lot of injuries at work are caused by the negligence of co-workers, and we are often asked how a claim for injury compensation can be made in such circumstances, when the employer itself is not to blame.
The answer is something called “Vicarious Liability” which means that you can claim against the employer of the person who injured you if the injury was caused at work. Every employee owes a duty of care to their colleagues to make sure that they work safely and do not cause injury.
If a colleague is negligent and this causes your injury, you can claim against the employer because the employer is vicariously liable for the negligence. In short, even if the employer did nothing wrong, they have to accept responsibility. This is only fair when you consider that the employer has insurance to pay out for injury claims whereas your colleague does not. As long as the fellow employee, who caused the accident was acting in the course of his employment, a claim can be made.
See an example of how Levenes’ serious injury claim solicitors were able to help a client who sustained injury contributed by a co-worker.
The most common types of accidents caused by co-workers
- Being hit by a forklift truck due to the negligence of the driver of the truck.
- Tripping or slipping when a co-worker has dropped or discarded something on the floor of an office, shop or warehouse.
- Negligently leaving materials in an unsafe place or unsafe condition.
- Careless handling of dangerous materials such as chemicals causing burns.
- Negligent handling of tools and equipment.
- Dropping materials from scaffolding on to workers who are working below.
- Physical violence from co-workers
Are claims caused by the actions of co-workers difficult to win?
Every case is decided on its own facts, but the majority of these cases are successful when it is very obvious that the co-worker was at fault such as in most of the examples above.
There can be more complex cases where the claim is not so obviously clear. For example, on a building site, with many independent contractors working in close proximity, it may not always be clear for whom each contractor was working. In these cases, Levenes will always consider with you very carefully the evidence as to how best to put forward the claim in your best interests.
Why choose Levenes?
We work diligently for our clients to help them put their lives back together and at the same time obtain the maximum compensation. With us on your side, you can expect:
- Over 100 years of combined experience – We have proven results; we are lawyers who fight for you with a record of success.
- Strong litigators – We are not afraid to take your case to court if we have to. We stand up for the rights of the injured and not for the rights of the big corporations.
- Empathy – We pride ourselves on our compassion and understanding and we are easy to talk to. We always put your interest first and we treat you as our family.
- A personal approach – Your case will be handled directly by one our partners with support from our team of lawyers.
- A tailor-made approach – Every client is treated individually and not as a number, to achieve the best possible result that you deserve.
- Clear communication – We talk to you in a down to earth way. We avoid legal jargon unless it cannot be avoided, and if so, we explain things clearly and simply.
- Maximum compensation – We have the courage to fight for what you are entitled to.
- Full attention – We have the resources to focus on every detail of the case and consider every angle. We do not spread ourselves too thinly – you deserve our full attention.
What to do if you were injured at work by a co-worker
It is important that you take action if you have been injured by a co-worker and we recommend that you do the following:
- Report the incident immediately to your manager or supervisor.
- Make sure that your employer keeps a written record of the incident.
- Get medical attention for your injuries.
- Take photos of the scene if you can.
- If you were the victim of an attack, then you should also report the matter to the police.
What sort of injuries are caused by co-workers?
Thankfully most injuries are not severe, but that is not always true, and, in some cases, very severe injuries are suffered.
The sorts of injuries caused by co-workers can include:
- Leg injuries
- Back injuries
- Brain Injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
Assaults by co-workers
These cases are more complex and need very careful consideration. It is no part of the job to use physical violence against a fellow employee, and so the argument will be that the employer cannot be responsible for the actions of their employee who was violent.
However, these cases can be successful on their individual facts. For example, if a night club bouncer stabs someone in the course of removing them from the premises, then he is doing his job, but in an ultra-violent way and his employer will be responsible. In one recent case, an employer was found liable when a member of staff argued with a customer, pursued him out of the building and assaulted him.
In another case, the employer was liable for the violence of a manager against an employee even though this happened at the company Christmas party. This was because the argument that led to the attack was about sales performance, so it was work related.
The courts have determined that if the issue that led to the attack was closely enough related to work, then the employer is liable.
Each case is decided on its facts and if you have been assaulted by a co-worker, Levenes will advise you if you have a claim. You may also be entitled to make a claim for Criminal Injuries Compensation.
However it was that you came to be injured due to the actions of your co-worker, Levenes will advise you, and guide you through the process to get the best possible result for your claim.
How to make a claim for injuries caused by co-workers
Levenes have dealt with many thousands of these types of claims over many years.
If you wish to make a compensation claim after having suffered injuries caused by a work colleague, it is essential that you contact us as soon as possible.
After our free initial consultation, when we will consider the merits of the claim, if we agree to take on your case, we will then work with you to put forward the case on your behalf, including obtaining all the necessary evidence in support of your claim.
We will obtain medical evidence about your injuries, considering in detail how the injuries have affected you and may do so in the future and discuss the details with you.