A Guide to Claiming Garage Injury Compensation
Updated: Sep 2, 2019
This guide considers what you need to know about making a successful garage accident compensation claim.
According to the Health and Safety Executive, the motor vehicle repair industry has witnessed 7,000 injuries and 33 fatal accidents over the past five years. These accidents arise in all sorts of circumstances, including:
- Slip, trip and fall accidents
- Pushing, pulling or carrying heavy weights, known as a manual handling accident
- Crush injuries sustained while working under a vehicle
- Injuries caused by faulty tools or equipment.
Given the heavy equipment and power tools used in vehicle repair, the consequences of a garage accident can be serious, with injuries ranging from cuts and broken bones to severe spinal injury and head injury.
Employers are responsible for eliminating hazards in a garage environment and generally providing a safe working environment. Thus, garage and motor repair accidents are usually categorised as accident at work claims. That said, anyone who has suffered an accident or injury in a garage or motor vehicle repair shop, including members of the public, may be eligible to bring a claim against the owner or occupier of the premises.
Do I have a garage injury claim?
As a basic rule, you will be eligible to make a garage injury claim if you were injured:
- in the last three years and;
- someone else was to blame.
However, there may be other considerations that mean you have a valid claim - even if the above points do not apply to you.
To get an impartial answer, speak to a garage injury claim expert on 0800 612 7456.
A brief phone consultation will confirm whether you have a claim. You will never be pressured into making a claim.
You can also find out if you have a claim with our Online Claim Checker.
What if the injury was diagnosed years after the event?
Typically, the dates of the injury and accident are the same. However, some injuries manifest themselves months or even years after the accident or exposure.
In this case, the clock starts ticking on the date of discovery (the date of diagnosis) of the injury rather than the date of the accident.
The amount of money you could claim for your garage injury will depend on:
- the extent 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 garage injury has affected your life. Your solicitor will take all of these effects into account to calculate the correct compensation award for you.
This calculation will factor in general damages and special 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 are for financial losses and expenses you have incurred as a result of the accident.
See a list of what you can claim for:
Examples of special damages include:
- Lost earnings (including future earnings)
- Medical treatment costs
- Travel costs
- Costs of care
- Costs of adapting your home or car
Find out what your claim could be worth now
Assessing a claim's value at the outset can be complicated.
If you would like a FREE claim estimate with no obligation to start a claim, call 0800 612 7456.
Alternatively, our compensation calculator will give you an instant estimate of what your claim is worth.
Caring and sensitive support
Your solicitor will handle your garage injury case from the initial consultation through to the financial settlement. In addition, your solicitor will work with other specialists to 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.
What are the employer's duties?
All employers owe a duty of care to their employees. By law, they must take reasonable steps to keep their employees safe from harm. Everyday duties include keeping the floors free from holes, obstructions and other trip hazards and making sure that oil and other spills are cleaned up immediately.
Garages are covered by a number of specific regulations that address the type of risks that may be found in a motor repair setting. These include:
- The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 - this piece of legislation requires that employers provide a safe working environment, assess and manage risks and adequately maintain their equipment, tools and materials.
- The Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992 - these regulations aim to protect workers from injury caused by lifting activities such as carrying tyres, car body parts and jacks, and other manual handling activities such as using a wrench on a wheel.
- Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 - these regulations place an obligation on employers to ensure that work machines such as vehicle lifts are safe to use, frequently inspected, well maintained and fit for purpose.
- The Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations - these regulations require an employer to limit exposure to hazardous chemicals such as benzene and to issue personal protective equipment when there is a risk of inhalation or splashing.
In addition to the various pieces of legislation, the Health and Safety Executive frequently issues guidance leaflets to help the owners of garages and motor vehicle repair shops minimise the risks and implement good workplace safety practices.
Is my employer liable?
To make a successful claim, the injury lawyer must show that the employer was legally responsible for the accident (negligence) and that injuries resulted from the accident (causation).
Evidence will be gathered to show that the employer failed to take reasonable steps to eliminate the risks associated with the relevant work process, premises or machinery and thus can be held legally accountable for the accident.
Lliability is almost always established if it can be shown that the employer breached a specific health and safety rule. Your solicitor will assist with the gathering of evidence in support of the claim, including witness statements and safety check logbooks.
No win, no fee - the facts
'No win, no fee' means that if your garage injury claim is unsuccessful, you will not have to pay your solicitor any money. Known as a 'Conditional Fee Agreement' or 'CFA', no win, no fee is an agreement between you (the 'claimant') and your solicitor.
Our no win, no fee promise
If you have been injured and someone else was to blame (even partially), our no win, no fee guarantee takes the risk out of making a garage injury compensation claim.
What do I pay if I win my garage injury claim?
Your injury solicitor will receive a success fee which is deducted from your compensation, only after your compensation is awarded. The solicitor's success fee can be up to 25%. You and your solicitor can agree the success fee before you start your claim.
What do I pay if I do not win my garage injury claim?
If your garage injury claim is not successful then you won't have to pay your solicitor any fees.
How can Quittance help?
Our highly experienced panel of solicitors have an excellent track record of winning work accident claims. Your solicitor will fight for the best possible compensation settlement for you.
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, and 9.30am to 5pm on Sunday.
Call us FREE 0800 612 7456 or arrange a callback:Call me back
No Win, No Fee
to start a claim
Garage 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.
Can I claim if I was partly responsible for an accident?
You may still be able to claim compensation even if you contributed to your accident or to your injuries.
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.
How long will my claim take?
The length of time needed to secure compensation can vary considerably.
For example, straightforward car accident claims can settle in a matter of weeks, whereas complex medical negligence cases can take years.
Injury claims can also take longer if it is not clear who is responsible for your injury, or if liability is denied by the defendant.
Taken from average case times, this table sets out approximately how long personal injury claims take to settle:
Personal injury claim type
Estimated claim duration*
4 to 9 months
6 to 9 months
12 to 36 months
12 to 18 months
6 to 9 months
3 to 4 months**
12 to 18 months**
**Official Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) Government agency and Motor Insurers’ Bureau (MIB) figures.
Will I have to go to court?
Highly unlikely. The vast majority of claims that are settled by Quittance’s solicitor panel are settled out of court.
Only a very small percentage (approx. 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 held in front of a judge, not a jury.
Will I have to go to a solicitor's office?
No. You will not need visit a solicitor's office. As with most professional services, it is no longer necessary to meet face to face with your solicitor. Personal injury claims are dealt with via email, post and telephone.
Should you need to have a medical, this will be arranged at a medical centre near you or at your GP's surgery.
Can I get an interim compensation payment?
If you suffer financial hardship as a result of an injury, you may be able to claim interim compensation payments.
An interim payment is a partial settlement of your claim which is paid before your claim is concluded. The amount you receive in interim payments would then be deducted from your final compensation settlement or award.
About the author
Gaynor Haliday is an experienced legal researcher and published author. She has had numerous articles published in the press and is a legal industry commentator.
Read more about this Quittance Legal Expert