Compensation for Severe Burns

Can I claim compensation for severe burns sustained in a factory if another employee caused the accident? I suffered severe chemical burns to my hands and arms due to a chemical spillage at work.

You have a legal right to claim compensation for severe burns against your employer’s liability insurance policy, provided the accident was caused as a result of negligence and if there was a breach in a duty of care. Your employer is ultimately responsible for the actions of his or her employees, and even if the accident was entirely the fault of a work colleague, it should still be possible for you to claim compensation against your employer’s liability insurance policy.

An employer owes you a duty of care to keep you safe at work, and under this duty of care the workplace must be kept free from hazards as far as is reasonably practical. Members of staff that are required to handle chemicals or perform tasks which could jeopardise the health and safety of colleagues must receive appropriate training. An employer must also ensure that the staff is competent and capable of performing work duties without endangering others. When an employer fails to take sufficient actions to safeguard the health of employees, and an injury is sustained by a worker, compensation can usually be claimed.

There are a number of actions you must take in order to be able to claim severe burns injury compensation against your employer’s liability insurance policy. You will have sought medical treatment for such severe injuries as chemical burns, so your medical records will be used to support your claim for compensation for severe burns as proof of injury. You must also provide proof that the accident occurred at work when you make a claim for severe burns injury compensation. This proof can come from eye-witness accounts of the accident, although you should make an official report of the accident in your employer’s accident book in this regard.

Your employer should have notified the Health and Safety Authority (HSA) about the accident as it was caused by a chemical spillage and is therefore reportable under The Safety, Health and Welfare at Work (Chemical Agents) Regulations, 2001. It would also have involved you being absent from work for a period of three days or more, which is also a reportable accident. You should speak with your employer to make sure that this HSA report has been made. The HSA may decide to investigate the accident to determine if there have been serious breaches in health and safety regulations in the workplace. If an HSA report can be obtained confirming breaches in health and safety regulations in the workplace it will be more straightforward to claim compensation for severe burns from an accident.

You should also seek legal advice from a personal injury solicitor about making a claim compensation for severe burns from an accident. A solicitor with experience in dealing with accidents at work will need to investigate your case to obtain proof of negligence, and you will be given assistance with the preparation of your Injuries Board claim forms. An experienced solicitor will also help to ensure that a strong case is prepared, and all aspects of your injuries are included on your Injuries Board assessment forms.



This is an Information site only – if you feel you have a potential claim, you should discuss your situation with a solicitor registered with the Law Society of Ireland.