Back Injury Compensation Claims
If your life, or the life of a loved one, has been affected by a back injury, we can help.
If your injuries were caused by someone else's actions or negligence, you may be entitled to claim compensation.
Claiming injury compensation with a solicitor
You can make a 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.
We can help you make a personal injury compensation claim on a No Win No Fee basis.
In this article
Back injury statistics
Back injuries are the most common form of workplace injury, with an estimated 1.2 million people in Britain suffering from a work-related musculoskeletal disorder according to Health Response UK.
60% of work-related illnesses relate to back, neck or limb problems. Back problems are the most prevalent however and they account for nearly 120 million lost workdays every year.
The human back is an intricate structure consisting of muscle, bone, joints and nerves extending from the neck to the pelvis. An injury to this structure can cause severe pain and could cause temporary or permanent immobility. The most common types of back injury include sprains and strains, fractured vertebrae and herniated disks.
Some people who have suffered back injuries may experience a full recovery following a course of medicine and/or bed rest. However, even relatively minor injuries are still painful, distressing and likely to result in financial loss. More serious injuries could require surgery or physical therapy.
Back injuries often lead to ongoing chronic pain. Chronic pain is very common with an estimated 7.8 million sufferers in the UK.
How are back injury claims and payouts assessed?
Back injuries range in type and severity. Solicitors are not qualified to assess the medical extent of the injury and will, therefore, refer the claimant to a medical professional for an expert opinion.
A medical examination will be arranged near you to assess the extent of your injuries. The medical report will be forwarded to the solicitor to assist in the building of the case.
Your lawyer will refer to back injury compensation examples to calculate your back injury compensation amount. Your back injury claim payout will also consider how long your injury could take to heal if you are not yet fully recovered.
Do I have an injury claim?
You should be eligible to make an injury claim if your injury happened:
- in the last 3 years, and;
- someone else was to blame, and;
- that person owed you a duty of care.
Claim eligibility - Common questions
What if a child was injured?
The 3 year rule does not apply to minors.
A claim can be pursued for anyone under the age of 18 by a parent, guardian or litigation friend. The injured child has up to the age of 21 to start an injury claim on their own behalf.
How back injury compensation can help you
One of compensation's central principles is that it should attempt to put people back in the situation they would have been in if the injury had not happened. Financial compensation can only ever go so far with respect to making restitution to a person.
Back injury compensation payouts
It is recognised by the courts that the impact of a back injury can be life-changing. Personal injury compensation may be awarded:
- for general damages to cover loss of amenity and for pain and suffering
- to reimburse travel expenses and damage to personal property
- for medical expenses such as physiotherapy and ongoing care
- to cover existing are future loss of earnings
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 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.
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
- Travel costs
- Costs of care
- Costs of adapting your home or car
Back injury compensation amounts
The following back injury payouts refer to the Guidelines for the Assessment of General Damages in Personal Injury Cases, Fifteenth Edition by the Judicial College.These tables are used by solicitors or by the courts as a starting point when calculating your compensation.
|Back injury||Minor||Full recovery within 3 months||Up to £1,950|
|Back injury||Moderate||Full recovery within 2 years||£1,950 to £6,290|
|Back injury||Moderate||Full or nearly full recovery within 5 years||£6,290 to £9,970|
|Back injury||Serious||Less severe disability||£22,130 to £30,910|
|Back injury||Serious||Ligament or disc damage with permanent symptoms||£9,970 to £22,130|
|Back injury||Severe||Chronic permanent symptoms||£30,910 to £55,590|
|Back injury||Severe||Serious injury with permanent symptoms||£59,120 to £70,490|
|Back injury||Very Severe||Spinal cord damage||£72,620 to £128,320|
|Neck injury||Minor||Full recovery within 3 months||Up to £1,950|
|Neck injury||Minor||Full recovery within 1 year||£1,950 to £3,470|
|Neck injury||Moderate||Injuries that worsen an existing condition||£6,290 to £10,960|
|Neck injury||Moderate||Soft tissue injury||£10,960 to £19,920|
|Neck injury||Moderate||Full recovery within 2 years||£3,470 to £6,290|
|Neck injury||Serious||Fractures or dislocations or severe soft tissue damage||£36,240 to £44,630|
|Neck injury||Serious||Fractures or dislocations with severe symptoms||£19,920 to £30,690|
|Neck injury||Severe||Serious fractures or damage to discs||£52,390 to £104,370|
|Neck injury||Severe||Causing paralysis||Around £118,240|
|Paralysis||Paralysis of short duration||Up to £39,330|
|Paralysis||Paraplegia||£174,620 to £226,610|
|Paralysis||Tetraplegia (Quadriplegia)||£258,740 to £322,060|
|Whiplash||Minor||Full recovery within 3 months||£300 to £1,950|
|Whiplash||Moderate||Full recovery within 1 year||£1,950 to £3,470|
|Whiplash||Serious||Full recovery within 2 years||£3,470 to £6,290|
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.
General damages for a serious back injury can be £30,000
For a more minor shoulder injury, in isolation, you would typically receive £5,200.
However, if you have a serious back injury and a more minor shoulder injury, you would typically receive £30,000 + a reduced percentage of £5,200.
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.
Can I claim for physiotherapy and private care costs?
Private treatment can be expensive, but funding towards the cost of this treatment frequently comprises part of a compensation award. Your solicitor may even be able to arrange access to private medical care as soon as your claim is accepted.
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:
How long does a back injury claim take?
How long it can take to process a back injury claim can vary significantly.
A straightforward liability accepted injury claim could be settled in a couple of months. If liability is denied, the process might take longer. Typically, an injury claim takes between 4 and 9 months. See more: 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 get financial advice?
Your solicitor will be able to advise you on whether to accept a financial settlement for your back injury claim. If you require tax planning or trust advice, the solicitor will recommend and work closely with a financial adviser.
What are the chances of success?
It will need to be shown, that the accident or circumstances in question caused your injuries. It must then be demonstrated that this resulted from a breach of duty by the party you are holding responsible.
If the other side has admitted fault then you have a good chance of winning.
Otherwise, if liability is contested achieving a successful outcome may be difficult.
Irrespective of whether liability has been admitted, you are advised to do what you can to build a strong case. Your personal injury solicitor will recommend a course of action. You could:
- report the incident to a relevant person or authority
- get photographic evidence of the scene and check for any CCTV footage (e.g. with local businesses)
- collect statements of any witnesses (and their names and addresses)
It is worth considering the above and doing everything you can to build a stronger case.
How we have helped others claim compensation for a back injury
Our personal injury experts have helped people receive compensation for back injuries:
- Back injuries in a road accident where the vehicle is hit from behind and the person is thrown forwards then backwards. This is known as 'whiplash', named after the movement of the spine as it cracks like a whip. Back injuries sustained in these circumstances may be anywhere on your back, and can often lead to symptoms like pins and needles in your hands or other areas due to nerve injuries in your back.
- Back injury at work claims, through lifting and carrying heavy objects which can either immediately or over a period of time cause back problems. UK employers should help by assessing risks at work and providing suitable training and supervision.
- Slip or trip back injuries caused by a wide variety of factors such as spillages, damaged flooring or pavement, or other hazards left on the floor, and all have one thing in common - the person slipping or tripping will at some point either hit the ground and this frequently causes a jarring injury to the back, or they manage to keep upright, but still have the jarring motion causing the back injury.
- Back injuries sustained in a fall. Even the smallest fall from height can cause a serious back injury. Although most common at places of work, Quittance's panel of solicitors have assisted with claims including horse riding injuries following improper supervision of riders.
- When using a faulty product - typically chairs that are not fit for purpose and lead to prolonged back injuries.
Your solicitor will enable you to prioritise your treatment and recovery, offering clear advice throughout the back injury claims process.
Will I have to go to court?
Highly unlikely. Solicitors settle the vast majority of claims out of court.
Around 2% 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.
No win, no fee
Under a no win, no fee agreement, your solicitor agrees that you will have no legal fees to pay if you do not winn your claim .
No win, no fee promise
Our no win, no fee guarantee means there is absolutely no financial risk in making an injury claim, even if you don't win your 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, 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 injury claim?
If your injury claim is not successful then you do not have to pay any legal fees whatsoever. 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 injury 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 for FREE advice on 0800 376 1001, or arrange a call back from a friendly, legally-trained advisor:
- Find out
if you can claim
- No obligation
to start a claim
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 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.
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.
If you were injured as a child, you do have up until your 21st birthday to make a claim.
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.
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.
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.
Howard Willis, Personal injury solicitor
About the author
Howard qualified as a solicitor in 1984 and has specialised in personal injury for over 25 years. He is a member of the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL) and is a recognised Law Society Personal Injury Panel expert.