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Accident Advice Centre2023-02-02T11:29:31+00:00

Accident Advice Centre

Have you had an accident and need help or advice? Our Accident Advice Centre answers some of your most commonly asked and searched for questions relating to accidents and injuries.

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Speak to us now on 029 2048 3615 or request a callback.

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Rosie Lyne

We help clients with personal injury claims across England & Wales.

For further information, please call us on 029 2048 3615 and one of our friendly team will be able to discuss your options based on your individual circumstances.

I had a car accident, and it wasn’t my fault2022-08-17T19:13:18+01:00

Road users owe each other a duty of care to ensure they take all reasonable care to avoid causing damage to each other. Therefore, if the driver of another road vehicle is careless and collides with your car, they have breached their duty of care to you. If you bring a claim for compensation against the other road user, you can expect to recover damages for any injuries or financial losses that were directly caused by their negligent actions.

Top tips for what to do after an accident that wasn’t your fault

  1. It may seem obvious, but it’s easy to forget to stop your car and turn the engine off in the aftermath of a collision. Make sure you do so.
  2. Put on your hazard lights.
  3. Take a moment to calm yourself and to ensure you are not injured.
  4. Check if any passengers in your vehicle, the other driver, or any passengers in their vehicle are injured.
  5. If anyone is hurt, call the emergency services; call the police in any accident that has caused the road to become blocked.
  6. Exchange details with the other driver: name, phone number and ideally their address and insurance details if they have them to hand.
  7. Call for the police in circumstances where you suspect the other driver has been drinking or is under the influence of drugs or where the other driver leaves or attempts to leave the scene without exchanging their details with you.
  8. At a later stage, but as soon as you can, report the matter to your insurers. If you didn’t get the other driver’s insurance details at the time of the accident, call them as soon as possible, and pass the details to your insurance company.
  9. If you were injured in the accident but didn’t attend hospital immediately, make an appointment to see your GP as soon as possible. If you feel your injuries warrant it, visit the A&E department of your nearest hospital.
  10. If you were injured in the accident and decide you want to claim compensation for personal injury from the other driver, contact a personal injury solicitor to discuss the matter with them whilst the circumstances of the accident are still fresh in your mind.
I had a car accident, and it was my fault2022-08-17T20:02:41+01:00

If the accident is definitely your fault, then you won’t be able to claim compensation from the other party to the accident. Depending on the amount of damage there is to your vehicle, you may decide to pay for your own repairs. Alternatively, you may want to let your insurers cover the cost of repairs to your vehicle, as long as you have comprehensive insurance.

Either way, it is best to notify your insurers. It is a must if you want them to cover the cost of your repairs. However, even if you intend to pay for your accident damage, you are still advised to report it to your insurers, as the driver with whose vehicle you collided may want to claim their damages from you.

Extra tips for what to do after you have been in a car accident that was your fault

  1. Do not apologise or admit liability even if the accident was your fault. If you tell the other driver the accident was your fault, your admission may be held against you should they try to claim from you at a later date. Also, your insurers may refuse to indemnify you because your admission of liability invalidates your insurance policy.
  2. Ask any passengers in your vehicle if they are injured. Do the same for the other driver and any passengers in any other vehicle involved. Keep a note of what you are told by any of them, even if they say they aren’t injured. It will be helpful evidence if any of them decide to claim for an injury at a later date.
  3. If you have any reason to believe that the other driver deliberately caused you to drive into their vehicle, call the police, whether anyone is injured or not. Fraudulent accidents aren’t as common as some insurance companies or the Press would have you believe, but they do happen.
  4. Finally, another reason for not admitting liability at the accident scene is that some accidents may, at first instance, seem to be the fault of one or other driver involved in the accident. However, when statements have been taken from everyone involved, including from any independent witnesses’ it may turn out that liability is not as clear-cut as it first appeared. Don’t make the mistake of admitting liability at the accident scene only to discover that a claim would have settled on a split liability basis.

An example of this would be when one car pulls out of a minor road because of a misleading signal given by the driver whose car they collide with. The main fault will lie with the car driver who pulled out from the minor road. However, there may also be liability on the driver who indicated his intention to turn into the road out of which the other driver was emerging.

A specialist car accident solicitor will be able to give you advice on whether your case is one of split liability, which, if proven, may still mean you can claim injury compensation. In that case, the payment you receive will be reduced to take into account the percentage for which you were liable for the accident.

I had a car accident, and my back hurts2022-08-17T20:07:26+01:00

If you are involved in a car accident as a driver or a passenger, there is every chance you may suffer an injury in the collision. If you are injured, your priority, even as a driver of one of the vehicles involved in the accident, is to ensure that you get the medical treatment you need immediately.

People in car accidents often suffer back injuries. Together with whiplash injuries, they are the two most common types of injury sustained by the occupants of vehicles involved in road traffic accidents. There is often a fine line between whiplash injuries and some back injuries, as whiplash commonly affects the neck and the upper and lower back.

The term ‘back injuries’ covers a wide range of injuries. For instance, back strains and sprains are standard features of car accident claims because a collision between motor vehicles frequently results in the occupants of the cars being thrown backwards and forwards or from side to side. This causes ‘wrenching’ injuries to muscles, ligaments, and vertebrae. The degrees of pain from these types of injuries vary widely in severity.

Even low-speed vehicle collisions can cause back injuries.

Symptoms of wrenching injuries to the back

The symptoms of the types of injury we have just described include:

  • Headaches
  • Loss of, or restricted, movement
  • Weakness in the affected areas
  • Pain
  • Stiffness

Serious back injuries caused by car accidents

The more severe types of back injury associated with being involved in car accidents include:

  • Thoracic Spine injuries
  • Lumbar spine injuries
  • Herniated disc injuries
  • Sciatic nerve injuries
  • Spinal cord injuries

Most serious back injuries result from high-speed collisions between vehicles. At their most extreme, injuries of this nature can result in the victim suffering permanent damage to the affected area. Disability, both temporary and permanent, or even fatal injuries are not uncommon outcomes when vehicles collide at high speed.

For more in-depth information about serious back injuries caused by being the victim of a car accident, see our pages on:

Spinal injuries

Serious injury compensation claims

What should I do if I injure my back in a car accident:

  • If your injury is a wrenching type of injury, you must get plenty of rest so as not to aggravate the injury.
  • Apply heat or cold treatments
  • Take ibuprofen to ease the pain
  • Get some professional massage treatment
  • Immediately after the accident, if the pain is acute, try to stay still. Ask someone to call an ambulance. Paramedics carry equipment that will ensure they can move you into the ambulance without causing further injury to your back whilst you are being transported.
  • Be aware that if you feel no back pain immediately after a collision, this may be because you are suffering from shock. Sometimes back injuries don’t manifest themselves immediately after the accident because shock kicks in and masks the injury. Take it easy, and if you experience back pain some hours or even days after the accident, make sure you visit your GP immediately for further investigations.
I had an accident at work, and it was not my fault2022-08-17T20:49:56+01:00

These are the steps you should take if you get injured in an accident at work that wasn’t your fault:

  • Your priority is to receive medical treatment for the injuries you’ve suffered, and it’s your legal right to get this. The Health and Safety (First Aid) Regulations 1981 places a duty on your employer to provide you with ‘adequate and appropriate equipment and personnel’ (in the form of a qualified first aider) to ensure you get immediate medical attention for an injury suffered in an accident at work.
  • If the business you work for has ten or more employees, it must have an accident record book in which all accidents at work are recorded. Make sure you either record the accident yourself or witness someone else doing this on your behalf.
  • Either take photos of the accident scene yourself or get a colleague or supervisor to do this for you. If you can, ensure this is done soon after the accident.
  • Find out if any of your work colleagues witnessed the accident. If they did, get their names and phone numbers. Their account of the accident could be crucial to your chances of bringing a successful accident at work claim against your employers if you decide to claim.
  • Whilst you are off work recovering from your injuries, you are entitled to receive Statutory Sick Pay. Some employers pay their employees wages in full in the event of an absence through injury or illness. Check your employment contract to find out what the position is in your case.
  • If you decide to claim against your employer for your injuries and other losses (including any loss of earnings), get in touch with an expert accident at work solicitor as soon as possible, whilst the accident details are fresh in your mind

If you want to find out more about accident at work claims and how to start the claims process, visit the following page on our website:

Accident at work claims

I had an accident at work but didn’t report it2022-08-17T20:08:35+01:00

Many people who have got valid reasons for bringing accident at work claims against their employers, fail to do so because they didn’t report the accident at the time it happened, or at all. They think a workplace personal injury claim will automatically fail if it hasn’t been reported. They are wrong. You can still bring a compensation claim against your employer even if you haven’t reported the accident.

Succeeding in an accident at work claim when you haven’t reported it, maybe a bit more complicated, but it is still possible. If you had reported the accident straight away, there would have been a contemporaneous record of what happened. Your employers might have had to report the incident to the HSE (Health and Safety Executive) if the incident was serious, and that would have meant there needed to be an investigation into how the accident happened.

Your claim may succeed even if you didn’t report the accident to your employers. You will need to prove your case, and some of the ways you will do this might be through:

  • CCTV – check whether the accident was covered on any CCTV cameras in your workplace and ask for copies of any footage if it has not already been deleted.
  • Photos of the hazard that caused your accident if it has not been rectified.
  • Medical records – if you were injured as a result of the accident and received medical attention from your GP or at the hospital, a medical report from the health professional treating you could be essential evidence.
  • Witness statements – if your accident was seen by any of your work colleagues, or anyone else, for that matter, try to contact them if you have their details. You can ask them if they will provide a witness statement. If you have asked an accident at work solicitor to help you bring an employer’s liability claim, pass the details of witnesses on to them so they can take the statements for you.

Report the accident to your employer now! There is nothing to stop you from reporting the accident at a late stage. Report it in writing, so there is a record of your doing this. Ideally, send your boss a letter by recorded delivery.

I had an accident at work, but it was my fault2022-08-17T20:09:18+01:00

Your employer owes you a duty of care. The duty is to do all he reasonably can to keep you safe whilst you do the job you are paid to do. If your employer breaches his duty of care to you and as a consequence you suffer injury or become ill, you may be able to bring a personal injury claim against him for  the loss and damage you suffer as a result of the accident.

You may have an accident at work that is entirely your fault, and if that’s the case, you won’t be able to claim. For example, if an experienced forklift truck driver drives his machine too quickly around a shopfloor and as a result loses control and hits a stack of shelves, injuring himself in the process, then it’s likely that the accident was the forklift driver’s fault and the driver wouldn’t be able to claim successfully.

However, there are situations where it isn’t entirely clear who was at fault for an accident at work. For instance,  let us use as an example a similar incident to the one described in the paragraph above, with the same results. Only this time, the person tasked with driving the vehicle has had insufficient basic training, specific job training or familiarisation training to operate the vehicle safely. Is this inexperienced driver at fault for the forklift truck accident?

He may believe he is. However, in addition to the employer owing his employees a general duty of care to do all he reasonably can to keep them safe in their work,  The Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 (PUWER) require employers to make sure that all employees who use, manage or supervise the use of work equipment, receive adequate training.

If this employee has not yet been adequately trained at the time the accident occurred, who is responsible for the accident? Every case turns on its individual circumstances but there is every chance a court would hold the employer entirely responsible for the accident and for the injuries the employee has suffered on the basis:

  • The employer was in breach of the duty of care he owed to his worker, and
  • The employer is in breach of his obligations under PUWER to make sure the employee has received adequate training to drive the forklift truck.

Some accidents at work that might, at first sight, appear to be the fault of the employee may, in fact be:

  • Entirely the fault of the employer
  • Cases where the doctrine of split liability occurs i.e., where both employer and employee bear some responsibility for the accident. Some accidents at work claims may be settled 50/50 where both worker and employer share equal responsibility for the accident. Other cases may be split 75/25 or 25/75, with either employer or employee bearing a larger share of fault for the accident, depending on the circumstances.

If you’ve been injured in an accident at work, it is always advisable to seek legal advice from specialist accident at work claims solicitors like Mooneerams. Getting advice on whether you have a claim won’t cost you anything. Call Mooneerams on 029 2048 3615 or contact us via our website.

I was injured at work and then got fired2022-08-17T20:10:03+01:00

If you were injured in an accident at work and then got fired, presumably because you had to take time off work due to your injuries, you would have a strong case under employment law regulations for unfair dismissal. The only exception would be if you were guilty of gross misconduct at the time of the accident, e.g., you were intoxicated.

As purely personal injury solicitors, Mooneerams don’t deal with employment law matters, but we do work in partnership with very experienced employment law solicitors who will be able to assist you. Call Mooneerams on 029 2048 3615 if you have been sacked for getting injured at work and you would like us to put you in touch with our employment law partners.

Some people who could bring successful accident at work claims against their employers don’t do so because they fear that if they do, their employer will sack them. The fear of being fired for bringing a work-related personal injury claim stops people from suing their employers for compensation.

In reality, few employers would dismiss an employee who has been injured in an accident in the workplace. Employers owe their employees a duty to take reasonable care of their health and safety during the course of their employment. Most take this obligation very seriously, and in the case of an accident at work, whether it is the company’s or the employee’s fault, they will follow the correct procedures, including:

  • Ensuring it is properly noted in the accident book – you as the employee can assist your case by ensuring the accident is reported to your employer as soon as possible after the incident occurs.
  • Making sure you get the medical attention you need.
  • If the accident is serious in accordance with their legal duty, your employers will report the matter to the HSE through RIDDOR.
  • They will report the matter to their employer’s liability insurance company. Most businesses in this country must have at least £5 million worth of liability insurance cover. The very reason employer’s liability insurance is compulsory is that it is there to meet the cost of any accident at work claims brought against employers by employees.

If you’ve been injured in an accident at work and are worried about getting fired should you make an employer’s liability claim, remember the following points:

  1. It’s improbable your employer will even think about firing you. Most bosses will instead be concerned about doing right by you.
  2. By law, your employer must have employer’s liability insurance. If you bring a claim against your employer for an accident at work that wasn’t your fault, the insurance company will pay out any compensation awarded to you.
  3. The consequences for your employer would be severe if they were to fire you for bringing a claim against them. Not only are they likely to face an employment tribunal claim, but your accident at work compensation claim will also include a claim for continuing and future loss of earnings.
  4. If you are worried about claiming because you think you will be singled out for unfair treatment at work by your employer, the same  principles apply – you may end up having grounds for bringing an employment law tribunal claim particularly if the employer’s conduct leads to you leaving the company and making a constructive dismissal claim.

You may also have grounds for bringing a claim for bullying or stress. All of this would be in addition to the accident at work claim you have already asked your personal injury to deal with.

I was injured outside of work2022-08-17T20:11:15+01:00

If you suffer an injury outside of work and it is unrelated to your work, you have no right to claim compensation from your employer, as it isn’t an accident at work.

So, whether your injury came whilst playing five a side football with work colleagues in the evening or as a result of tripping up on a pavement whilst walking home from work, any claim would be directed to the person or authority responsible which, in the types of cases described, would not include your employer.

However, just because an employee is injured in an accident that occurs away from the employer’s premises does not necessarily prevent them from bringing an accident at work claim against their employers.

Many workers are employed to carry out their duties away from company’s premises. The employees of a window cleaning company who are required to clean windows at customers’ homes  or businesses, will still have valid grounds for bringing an accident at work claim against their employer if they suffer injury in an accident caused by defective equipment supplied by their employer. That the accident happened away from their employer’s premises is irrelevant.

What’s the case if your work involves driving as part of your duties and you are injured in an accident whilst driving on company business?

If the road traffic accident you are involved in is obviously the fault of another driver, then your employer will probably want to make a claim for vehicle damage and other losses from the insurers of the other driver. They will usually arrange for you to bring a personal injury claim against the other driver too.

If you are injured whilst driving on company business as a result of an accident caused by your negligence, then your employers will be held responsible for your actions because of something called ‘vicarious liability’.

In most cases, you would have no cause for bringing an accident at work claim against your employer for the injuries you suffered in an accident that you caused. The exception would be if your employer causes or permits you to drive whilst you are tired. If, due to a lapse of concentration brought on by your being tired, you suffer injury in an accident, you may have grounds for bringing an accident at work claim against your employer. This happened in the decided court case of Eyres v Atkinsons Kitchens Court of Appeal 24 April 2007.

I was injured at home and can’t work2022-08-17T20:11:55+01:00

If you are an employee who works from home and gets injured whilst working at home, you may theoretically be able to bring an accident at work claim against your employer. The business you work for has a common law duty to do all they reasonably can to keep you safe whilst you are at work. If you work from home, that duty includes keeping you safe whilst you do so.

By law, employers are required to carry out a suitable risk assessment of the risk to which their employees may be exposed whilst at work. This requirement still applies to employees working from home. Let’s suppose the employer fails to carry out a risk assessment of a client’s home working conditions adequately or at all, and an accident occurs which causes injury to the employee. In that case, the employer could be liable to pay compensation in the injured worker brings an accident at work claim against him.

In reality, the court would accept that the employer has much less control over the safety of an employee working from home than they do at their place of business. It would be challenging to bring a successful accident at work claim for something that happened whilst you were working from home. Working at home is still relatively new to many people, and a successful claim against an employer will eventually be made by someone suffering an injury in an accident whilst working at home

If you are injured in an accident at home that is non work related, you would not be eligible for compensation from your employer. Depending on your employment’s contractual terms, you may continue receiving full pay whilst absent from work. Alternatively, it’s more likely you will only be able to claim SSP of £99.35 per week for a maximum of 28 weeks if you are employed but cannot work. To qualify for SSP, your average earnings for the two months before the accident must have been at least £123 a week.

How long do I have to start a personal injury claim?2022-11-21T11:35:03+00:00
  • For most adults, the time limit for bringing a claim (known as the Limitation Period) is three years from the date of the accident or incident that was the cause of your injuries or illness.
  • The three-year period for children under eighteen does not start until they reach their eighteenth birthday and ends on their twenty-first birthday. So, if a child has an accident at the age of five, they don’t need to start their claim until they are eighteen. (In reality, their parents or guardian are likely to start a claim on their behalf whilst the child is still a minor).
  • For protected persons who lack mental capacity, their time limit for claiming for personal injury only starts when they regain capacity. However, they will have guardians or attorneys appointed by the Court of Protection or a Power of Attorney who can bring a claim on their behalf.
  • If the protected person never regains mental capacity, their time for making a claim will never end, meaning a claim could be made on their behalf at any time during their life.

In some accident or injury circumstances, it would be unfair if the time limit for claiming commenced on the date of the incident causing the injury or illness. In cases of medical negligence or asbestos claims, it is often impossible to pinpoint when the negligence took place

Asbestos-related illnesses are only diagnosed many years after the victim was exposed to asbestos, and the period between exposure and diagnosis can be between ten to sixty years.

An asbestos victim can’t start an asbestos claim until diagnosed with asbestos disease. Even then, it’s impossible to know the precise date or dates of the exposure that was the cause of their condition.

The same applies to medical negligence. A health care professional‘s negligence caused that physical or mental harm may only come to light at a much later date than when the negligence occurred. It may not be possible to pinpoint when the negligent act occurred.

For these reasons, the time limit for bringing a claim for medical negligence or asbestos disease ( and in some personal injury cases) will be three years from the Claimant’s date of knowledge, with ‘date of knowledge’ being defined as the date the Claimant became aware:

  1. That the injury or illness was a significant one.
  2. That the injury or illness was attributable in whole or in part to the act or omission alleged to constitute negligence or breach of duty.
  3. Of the identity of the proposed Defendant in the claim

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