Whether part of a casual farm workforce or even self-employed, if you are involved in an accident while working, you may well be entitled to compensation.
There are numerous dangers in the farming environment such as machinery, animals and exposure to an array of different types of chemical/dust.
It would be sensible to approach a claims management company if you have suffered an injury as a consequence of negligence by your employer.
What Compensation Value Can I Claim for a Farming Injury?
If you’re injured while working on a farm, you can claim compensation. As farms are usually self-contained businesses, you will need business insurance, which is where you will make your injury claim. Compensation will vary depending on your injury.
The farming industry is another sector of the workforce where injuries are often seen as “part of the job” when again, this is just not the case. Those working in the farming community have as much legal protection as those in other areas of the business world.
It is therefore essential that you pursue compensation if you are injured as a consequence of negligence by your employer. You have as many rights as any other employee!
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What Are the Most Common Types of Farming Injury Scenarios?
There are numerous dangers when working in the farming community, but some of the more common scenarios where injuries occur include:-
- Traditional farm work
- Members of the public visiting a farm
- Faulty farming equipment
- Exposure to chemicals
Whether an employee or member of the public visiting a farm, there is a legal onus on the farmer to ensure the physical and mental well-being of employees and visitors.
On average 20% of people who get injured at work make a compensation claim.
What Are the Most Common Types of Injuries on a Farm?
When reviewing personal injury claims, you will find a significant number relate to farming and in particular injuries such as:-
- Crush injuries as a consequence of using farm vehicles/quad bikes unsafe for use
- Slips trips and falls often from high
- Violent attacks from farm animals
- Injuries as a consequence of unmaintained/unsafe farming equipment
- Falling into silos/slurry pits
- Exposure to chemicals
- Use of vibrating tools which can lead to repetitive strain injuries
These are just a selection of some of the more common types of injuries associated with farm compensation claims.
Who Will Cover Compensation Awards?
While historically farming has been seen as separate from the business community and the various legal obligations which follow. This is not the case. Farming is as much an industry like retail, manufacture and any other type of business you can think of.
As a consequence, farmers (whether operating as a limited company or not) will require business insurance to cover issues such as personal injury claims. While some employers may have you believe otherwise, by far and away, the vast majority of compensation awards are paid through business insurance.
How Long Do I Have to Make a Claim?
There is a basic three-year window of opportunity during which you are able to claim compensation – assuming that you can prove negligence. It is important to note that this three-year window of opportunity begins on the day you are diagnosed with your injury/medical condition as opposed to the actual date of the incident/accident.
In many cases, the accident date and the diagnosis date will be the same but not always. There may be some conditions which are diagnosed days, weeks, months or even years down the line. It is only at this point of diagnosis that the three-year window of opportunity will begin.
Why Are There So Many Injuries in the Farming Sector?
While the vast majority of farming businesses in the UK are up to date with their safety equipment, training and PPE, very often they will be working in challenging environments, to say the least. Wind, rain, snow and any other type of weather you can think of!
However, the employer needs to find a balance between the risk/reward because if employees are sent out in unduly risky conditions, and are involved in an accident, this could be deemed negligent.
Does My Employer Need to Provide Safety Equipment?
Yes. All employers have the duty of care towards the physical and mental well-being of their employees. This includes training as well as providing the relevant safety equipment which should be in good working order.
How Often Should Farm Machinery Be Checked?
Most farming equipment is checked on an annual basis, although if there are difficulties with a particular piece of equipment, it should be checked immediately. If you’re working with machinery which seems to be malfunctioning in some way you have an obligation to advise your employer.
If they were not made aware of the dangers and an accident was to occur, then they may be able to mitigate a level of negligence because they weren’t warned by their employees.
What Evidence Do I Need to Pursue a Compensation Claim?
In order to pursue a compensation claim, you would first have to prove negligence on behalf of your employer and/or other third parties. The typical elements of evidence used will include:-
- Witness statements
- Accident books
- Medical diagnosis
- Medical records
- Farm maintenance records
- Timeline of events
- Details of pain and suffering post-accident
- Previous warnings given to employer
The more evidence you can gather to support your claim, the better. It is then simply a case of approaching a claims management company to review your case.
Working on a “No Win No Fee” Arrangement
If a claims management company believes you have a minimum 60% chance of success, they will likely agree to take on your claim on a “no win no fee” basis. This effectively means that the claimant has no liability for the costs incurred by the claims management company in pursuing their case.
In exchange, they will request an average of 25% of any compensation awarded. It is also worth noting that your claims management company will likely be able to reclaim their expenses from the defendant in light of a successful claim.
What Level of Compensation Should I Expect?
The level of compensation will depend upon the seriousness of your injuries. For example, a severe brain injury could result in compensation between £224,800 and £322,060. Crush injuries leading to the removal of one lung and/or serious heart damage could result in compensation of between £80,250 and £119,650.
The vast majority of compensation claims are settled out of court where negligence is obvious and not disputed.
There are many misconceptions in the personal injury claims industry, one of which revolves around farming. There are a number of relatively unique dangers when working in a farming environment, but this does not remove your employer from their legal obligation to maintain your health and safety.
If you are injured as a consequence of negligence by your employer, then you have every right to claim compensation.
Quick Personal Injury FAQs
RIDDOR stands for the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations. This 2013 legislation requires that you report workplace incidents. A report should be made no later than ten days after the occurrence.
Reports are made to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). They should be made by a responsible person such as a supervisor, manager or business owner. Not all incidents need to be reported, though a majority do. You should file a RIDDOR report online.
Even if you’ve claimed compensation and taken your employer to court, they are not legally allowed to dismiss you after an injury. If you can prove that your dismissal is a direct result of your injury, you could be entitled to further compensation to rectify the way you’ve been treated.
Any accidents in the workplace need to be properly recorded. That’s the case whether they happened to you, another member of staff or a customer. Your place of work should have an accident book that they maintain.
Make sure that any accident is recorded in the accident book. The document should be signed by those involved, to show that it’s an accurate record.
It’s always a good idea to report an injury outside of work. Even if you have no intention of claiming any money, reporting an incident means that any oversights won’t go unnoticed for long. Reporting incidents provides those responsible with a chance to set things right, whether they need to make some repairs or change the processes they have in place.
How Can Money Savings Advice Help You With Making a Personal Injury Compensation Claim?
Here at Money Savings Advice, we have partnered with some of the UK’s leading Personal Injury Claims management companies. They have already helped thousands of people claim compensation for injuries they have incurred, and they can do the same for you.
Choosing an independent claims management company means they won’t proceed with a claim unless they are sure it is in your best interests. They are also regulated by the FCA, which gives you an additional layer of protection.
If you would like to speak to one of these claim management companies who can help you make a compensation claim, then click on the below and answer the very simple questions.