If an office injury has set you back, we'll help you move forward
Office injuries can vary from trips on loose cables to chronic back pain due to poor ergonomics and repetitive strain injuries like RSI. If an office injury has disrupted your life or that of a loved one, and it was caused by employer negligence or a breach in workplace health and safety, you could be eligible for compensation for your pain and suffering, medical costs, lost income, and other expenses incurred.
You can make an office injury claim with the help and support of a personal injury solicitor
In this article
You are not alone
Slips, trips and falls are the most common category of office injury, with HSE figures showing these accidents as accounting for around 32% of work accidents. Manual handling, lifting and carrying, also common in many office roles, account for 17% of work injuries.
Common occupational conditions and illnesses faced by office workers include postural problems, stress and Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI).
If you decide to make an office injury claim, your work accident solicitor will take you through every step of the claims process. Your solicitor will be with you until you win your claim and get the compensation you deserve.
Do I have an office injury claim?
As a basic rule, you will be eligible to make an injury claim if you were injured:
- within the last 3 years, and;
- another person was to blame, and;
- that person owed you a duty of care.
Use our injury claim calculator to find out if you can claim. Alternatively, you can speak to a claims advisor on 0800 376 1001 and find out if you have a claim in minutes.
What if I was partially at fault?
Personal injury claims where both the defendant and claimant share some responsibility are relatively common.
In our recent 2023 Work Injury Claimant Survey, 26.02% of injured workers thought they could be partially to blame for their accident.
If you believe you were partly responsible, you may still have a claim. If you were injured at work, you should be able to claim compensation from your employer even if your actions, or the actions of a colleague, contributed to your injury.
How much compensation can I claim for an office accident 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.
Get an accurate compensation estimate (including for multiple injuries), confirm your legal position, and check if you have a No Win, No Fee claim.
Updated December 2023
Compensation Calculator v3.04
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 because of your accident. In addition to paying for loss of earnings, damage to clothing and equipment, special damages can cover any care costs and medical procedures you need, such as pain medication and physiotherapy.
Psychological harm and accidents in the workplace
Are you concerned about the mental and emotional impact of your injury? You are not alone.
Our 2023 Work Injury Claimant Survey shows how prevalent psychological injuries are in the workplace. 25.03% of claimants report suffering a psychological injury, 62.38% of which were related to a physical injury.
You should not feel pressured to return to work before you are fully healed, including less obvious psychological injuries. A premature return could worsen your mental health, prolonging a full recovery.
Diagnosable psychiatric injuries, such as PTSD, are recognised in the guidelines for calculating compensation. The cost of treatment and support for these injuries should be included in your compensation award or settlement.
Our compensation calculator can estimate your compensation for psychological injuries. Or you can call us on 0800 376 1001 to speak to a specialist advisor.
Typical causes of office accidents
Slips trips and falls in the office are typically caused by everyday workplace hazards, such as:
- cables from electrical equipment that have not been secured safely
- files, boxes or other objects left lying on the floor
- damaged carpets
- spillages on hard floors.
Slip, trip and fall accidents may result in sprains, cuts, bruises and fractures. 95% of serious trip and fall accidents result in broken bones.
Electric shock and burn injuries are also common in the workplace. These are typically caused by faulty electrical devices, such computers, printers and kettles.
Compensation is calculated based on the injuries that are sustained and the impact these injuries have had on a claimant's life, rather than the context or cause of the injury. For the purposes of an injury claim, the cause of the injury does matter, however. It must be shown that an office accident was the cause of the injuries, and that the accident itself was caused by another party's act or negligence.
Accidents at office workstations
Office accidents may also occur in less obvious situations. For example, a poorly organised work area that is not ergonomically sound may cause or exacerbate a back injury, while a keyboard that does not provide wrist support may cause or exacerbate a wrist injury. Poorly illuminated offices and high-glare computer screens are known to cause vision problems in some workers.
Many workstation accidents manifest as a type of repetitive strain injury, a muscle impairment injury caused by the continuous performance of a repetitive action such as typing. Repetitive work practices that put pressure on joints, such as resting on the elbows for a continuous period, may also cause tendonitis or bursitis.
Each of these situations may result in an office accident compensation claim.
Claiming against your employer
Claims are brought against the employer or their insurance company, even if the accident was the fault of a co-worker.
By law, all employers must carry Employer's Liability Insurance, a special type of insurance that pays compensation to employees who are injured in the workplace. It is usually the employer's insurance company who would pay compensation.
Is my employer liable?
Employers have a duty of care to ensure that their employees are not put in harm's way. By law, they must take reasonable steps to ensure that their work environment conforms with safety requirements. As part of this obligation, an employer must:
- carry out a risk assessment to identify potential hazards in the workplace
- eliminate any risks that can be eliminated, such as installing cable tidies to remove the risk of trips and falls
- provide safety equipment where necessary
- train staff on safe working practices.
To win a claim, the claimant's solicitor will need to prove that the employer failed to take reasonable steps to keep the premises safe and protect people from injury. Negligence is almost always established where the employer has breached a specific health and safety rule.
It may be possible to claim for existing injuries that have worsened as a result of an office accident. For example, an employee with epilepsy may make a claim if they are forced to sit too close to a bright computer screen for long periods, and their condition is made worse. Read more about making an injury claim for an existing condition.
Office 'clean as you go' policies
Clean as you go is identified as a health and safety best practice. Members of staff are trained to actively look for potential workplace hazards during their ordinary duties and take immediate action to remove any danger. This may include removing waste to bins, cleaning up spills and generally keeping workstations in a safe and hygienic condition.
Employers who enforce a proactive clean as you go policy may be able to mount a successful defence to an office accident claim. These policies demonstrate that the employer takes employee safety seriously and is taking reasonable steps to protect workers from injury.
What to do after an accident
If the employer admits responsibility for the office accident, the chances of a successful claim are very high.
There are a number of things that can be done to help build a strong case:
- report the accident
- record the incident in the accident log book
- take photographs of the scene of the accident
- record the name and address of any witnesses to the accident
- if necessary, report the incident to the Health and Safety Executive or check the employer has done so.
How did your injury happen?
The claims process will vary depending on how your office injury happened. Click the icons below to learn more:
How we can help you with your work accident claim
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.
- Find out
if you can claim
- No obligation
to start a claim
If you have any questions, or would like to start a No Win No Fee work accident claim, we are open:
Mon-Fri 8am-9pm, Sat 9am-6pm, Sun 9:30am-5pm
Call us for FREE advice on 0800 376 1001, or arrange a call back from a friendly, legally-trained advisor:
Handled with the utmost professionalism... extremely kind, courteous and empathetic.
Gaynor Haliday, Legal researcher
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.