Building Site Injury Compensation Claims

If your life, or the life of a loved one, has been affected by a building site accident, we can help.

If your injuries were caused by your employer or a co-worker, you may be entitled to claim compensation.

Claiming injury compensation with a solicitor

You can make a work accident compensation claim with the help and support of a personal injury solicitor.

Your solicitor will ask you about what happened, and they will collect evidence to prove what caused your injuries. Your solicitor will also work out how much money you can claim, based on your injuries, lost earnings and other expenses. By law, your employer will have insurance to cover the cost of injury claims, and your compensation will be paid out of this policy.

We can help you make a work accident claim on a No Win No Fee basis.

In this article

Introduction

Construction sites are inherently dangerous places to work, and these dangers are reflected in the official workplace accident statistics published by the Health and Safety Executive ('HSE').

Although only around 5% of the UK workforce is employed in the construction industry, 40% of all fatal workplace accidents occurred in that sector in 2019/20. HSE data shows fatalities are rising. Likewise, the construction sector accounts for a disproportionately high number of workers who sustain serious injuries in the course of their work.

A person may be able to claim compensation if he or she sustains personal injury on a building site due to someone else's negligence.

Scaffolding

Do I have an injury claim?

It should be possible to make an injury claim if you were injured:

  • in the last 3 years and;
  • someone else was to blame.

Even if these two points don't apply to you, you may still be able to make a claim.

To find out for sure, speak to a legally trained adviser on 0800 376 1001.

A brief phone consultation will tell you exactly where you stand. There is no obligation to start a claim.

Can I still claim if I didn't report the building site injury?

If you did not report the accident it can make it more difficult to pursue a building site injury claim, but a claim may still be possible. This will depend on the circumstances of your case and on the other evidence available.

What if I want to make a multi-party or group claim?

A multi-party claim (sometimes referred to as a 'group claim' or a 'class action') brought by a group of people who have sustained the same or similar injuries due to the negligence of the same defendant. How you start a multi-party claim will depend on the circumstances and we recommend you speak to a solicitor for more information.

Health and Safety legislation

A strict legislative framework governs health and safety on building sites. This includes the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015, which covers both the design and operation of construction sites.

The HSE is responsible for overseeing and enforcing workplace safety regulation. The duties of HSE officers include:

  • Conducting site inspections;
  • Issuing guidance to construction site operators; and
  • Bringing prosecutions against those who breach workplace safety regulations*

The HSE does not, however, bring or handle claims for compensation made by persons injured on a building site.

*Except in Scotland, where the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service is responsible for bringing prosecutions.

Typical building site accidents

Workers on construction sites are at risk from sustaining injury from a variety of causes, including:

  • Falls from scaffolding or ladders;
  • Falling down a hole or shaft or falling on uneven or dangerous ground;
  • Being struck by falling objects, such as tools or masonry;
  • Faulty or defective machinery;
  • Electrocution;
  • Lifting and handling heavy or awkward loads; and
  • Being struck by a vehicle.

In 2013/14, falls from height were responsible for over 30% of the most serious injuries (including fatal injuries) to construction workers. The most common overall causes of injuries on a construction site are, however, lifting and handling accidents.

The variety of hazards present on a building site can give rise to a large number of different types of injury, including:

  • Back and neck injuries;
  • Burns;
  • Fractures;
  • Amputation of a hand or finger(s); and
  • Head injuries.

Personal Protective Equipment at Work (Amendment) Regulations 2022

The Personal Protective Equipment at Work (Amendment) Regulations 2022 came into force on 6 April 2022.

This legislation means that employers have an obligation to provide free Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to all workers, including workers who are self-employed or on a zero-hours contract.

Under the previous 1992 regulations, employers were only required to provide PPE to employees with a formal employment contract.

If you are injured on a building site and your employer failed to provide you with suitable PPE, you may be entitled to claim compensation.

Injuries to visitors

Although most people injured on construction sites are employees or contractors of the site operator, injuries to visitors are also fairly commonplace. These can include serious or even fatal injuries. In the ten years up to and including 2013/14, 46 visitors to UK construction sites were killed in accidents.

Many of the health and safety regulations which apply to workplaces do not cover visitors. However, visitors to a workplace, including a building site, are still covered by both the common law and by legislation such as the Occupiers Liability Act 1957 and, in Scotland, the Occupiers Liability (Scotland) Act 1960

    What to do if you have been injured

    It does not matter whether you are an employee, contractor or visitor, you may well be able to claim compensation if you were injured on a building site in an accident that was not your fault.

    We can guide you through the claims process and ensure that you receive the compensation you are entitled to. Call us on 0800 376 1001 or arrange a call back at a time that suits you.

    How much compensation can I claim for an injury?

    The amount of money you could claim for your injury will depend on:

    • the seriousness of your injury, and
    • any financial losses or costs you have incurred.

    At the start of your claim, your solicitor will consider the many ways your injuries have affected your life. Your solicitor will take these considerations into account to calculate the correct compensation award.

    This calculation will factor in 'general damages' and 'special damages'.

    General damages

    General damages are awarded for pain, suffering and loss of amenity (PSLA).

    Awards for general damages are set by the Judicial College and published in their guidelines for personal injury awards.

    Special damages

    Special damages are for financial losses and expenses you have incurred as a result of the accident.

    What can I claim for after an injury? (see list)

    Examples of special damages (losses you can claim for) include:

    • Lost earnings (including future earnings)
    • Medical treatment costs
    • Physiotherapy
    • Travel costs
    • Costs of care
    • Costs of adapting your home or car

    How is compensation calculated if I have multiple injuries?

    If you have sustained multiple injuries, the compensation amounts are not simply added together.

    The upper bracket of the most serious injury may be considered as a starting point, with a reduced amount applied for the other less severe injuries.

    For example:

    General damages for a life-altering back injury can be £65,000

    For a minor arm injury, in isolation, you would typically receive £4,000.

    However, if you have a life-altering back injury and a minor arm injury, you would typically receive £65,000 + a reduced percentage of £4,000.

    Special damages, such as loss of earnings are not usually increased if you have multiple injuries. Read more about multiple injury claims.

    What is the average injury compensation for an injury claim?

    The Judicial College injury tables give a approximate idea of the ranges awarded for different injuries.

    However, the money you would receive following an injury will depend entirely on your specific circumstances.

    Your injury compensation will be calculated based on the unique impact your injuries have had on your life and your ability to work, and on the actual financial losses you have incurred as a result of your injuries.

    Calculate my injury compensation

    Calculating how much compensation you can claim for an injury can be complicated.

    Our injury compensation calculator tells you if you may have a claim, how much compensation you could claim, and what you can claim for.

    Find out what your injury claim could be worth now:

    Calculate compensation

    How long does a building site injury claim take?

    The time needed to get compensation for a building site accident can vary considerably.

    For example, if liability is accepted by your employer, a claim might be concluded in a couple of months. If liability is denied, the process might take considerably longer. On average a work accident claim takes between 6 and 9 months. See: How long will my claim take?

    How else can a solicitor help me?

    Your solicitor will handle your injury claim from the initial FREE case evaluation, through to the financial settlement.

    Your solicitor will work with other specialists to provide caring and sensitive support and help you with:

    • Financial support: interim payments while you are unable to work.
    • Advice: on personal injury trusts, tax and welfare benefits.
    • Coordination: with rehabilitation providers and therapists.
    • Access: to treatment and therapies not always available on the NHS.

    Will I have to go to court?

    Highly unlikely. Solicitors settle the vast majority of claims out of court.

    Less than 5% of personal injury claims go to court. Generally, only very complex cases, or those where liability cannot be resolved, end up in court.

    Cases that do ultimately go to court are decided by a judge or magistrate, not a jury.

    Even if the claim does go to court, it is very unlikely you will have to attend.

    Read more:

    Will my injury claim go to court and what if it does?

    No win, no fee - the facts

    With a no win, no fee agreement (referred to as a 'Conditional Fee Agreement' or 'CFA') you can make an injury claim without having to pay upfront legal fees. If your injury claim is unsuccessful you won't have to pay any money to your solicitor.

    No win, no fee - our guarantee

    If you have been injured through no fault of your own, our no win, no fee guarantee takes the risk out of making an injury compensation claim. Read more about making a No win, no fee claim

    What do I pay if I win my injury claim?

    Your injury solicitor will receive a success fee which is deducted from your compensation, once your claim is settled. The solicitor's success fee can be up to 25%. Your solicitor will agree a success fee with you before you start your claim.

    What do I pay if I do not win my injury claim?

    If your injury claim is not successful then you do not have to pay any legal fees at all. Your solicitor may take out insurance to ensure there will be nothing to pay.

    Is there a penalty if I withdraw?

    Under a No Win, No Fee Agreement (CFA), fees may apply if a claimant refuses to cooperate, or abandons their claim after the legal work has started, or if the claim is fraudulent.

    How we can help you

    Your solicitor will fight for the best possible compensation settlement for you, and the highly-experienced panel of solicitors have an excellent track record of winning work accident claims.

    If you have any questions, or would like to start a No Win No Fee claim, we are open:

    • 8am to 9pm weekdays
    • 9am to 6pm on Saturday
    • 9.30am to 5pm on Sunday

    Call us FREE 0800 376 1001 or arrange a callback:

    Call me back
    • Tick icon FREE consultation
    • Tick icon Find out if you can claim
    • Tick icon No obligation to start a claim

    Injury FAQ's

    Can I claim for someone else?

    Yes. In certain circumstances, it is possible to claim compensation on behalf of another person in the capacity of a 'litigation friend'.

    If an injured person is either too young or vulnerable, too injured or otherwise unable to claim on their own behalf, their litigation friend can handle the claim process on behalf of the injured person.

    The litigation friend will be responsible for communicating with the solicitors, and for making decisions in respect of the claim.

    Read more:

    Claiming on behalf of another person.

    Can I claim if I feel I was partly responsible for my accident?

    Yes. You may still be able to claim compensation even if your actions may have contributed to the accident.

    However, if you were partly to blame (known as contributory negligence), your compensation may be reduced and it may be more difficult to prove liability.

    Read more:

    Claiming compensation if you were partly responsible for an accident.

    How long do I have to make an injury claim?

    In general, you have a time limit of up to 3 years from the date of the injury to make an injury claim.

    The last date you can make a claim is known as the claim limitation date - after which your injury claim becomes 'statute barred'.

    Can I claim for an injury after 3 years?

    Possibly. The general rule for adults is that a claim must be started within three years.

    However, the three-year countdown starts on the day you learned of your injury or illness. This will usually be the date of the accident, but could be the date your doctor gave you a diagnosis.

    There other circumstances that can also impact the limitation date. Call us now on 0800 376 1001 to find out if you are still able to claim injury compensation.

    In reality, there are a number of factors that can affect whether an injury claim will be taken on by a solicitor.

    Calculate your claim limitation date

    Will I have to visit a solicitor's office to start a claim?

    No. You will not need visit a solicitor's office. Personal injury claims are handled by email, post and phone.

    Should you need to have a medical, this will be arranged at a medical centre near you or at your GP's surgery.

    Read more:

    Will I have to visit a solicitor's office?

    I need the money now - what are my options?

    If you are unable to work and have bills to pay, you may be able to claim an interim compensation payment.

    An interim payment is an advance on your compensation payment. Any amount you receive in interim payments would be deducted from your final compensation payment.

    Read more:

    How to I get an interim compensation payment?

    Chris Salmon, Director

    Author:
    Chris Salmon, Director