A Guide to Claiming Bursitis Injury Compensation

If you have been affected by bursitis we can help.

The purpose of this guide is to help anyone who has suffered bursitis and is considering a legal claim for compensation. If you are looking for medical advice, please see the NHS website.

Introduction

Bursitis and cellulitis are responsible for around 1 in every 200 patient visits to a GP. Often the condition is caused or aggravated by repetitive work practices that put pressure on joints.

Leg injury claims frequently relate to bursitis and similar conditions.

The condition has been known colloquially by many other names, including beat knee, beat elbow, bricklayer's shoulder, miner's elbow, tennis elbow, housemaid's knee, clergyman's knee and policeman's heel.

The names given to Bursitis indicates the sheer number of tasks and occupations that may cause or exacerbate the condition.

Do I have a bursitis injury claim?

As a basic rule, you will be eligible to make a bursitis injury claim if you sustained an injury:

  • within the last three years, and;
  • another person was to blame, and;
  • that person owed you a duty of care.

Find out if you have a claim with our Online Claim Checker:

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What are the exceptions?

However, if these two points don't apply, a claim may still be possible.

To find out for sure, you can speak to a legally trained adviser on 0800 612 7456.

A brief phone consultation will confirm whether you have a claim. You will never be pressured into making a claim.

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 a bursitis injury claim on their own behalf.

Read more about claiming injury compensation on behalf of a child.

What if I don't know who was to blame?

You should contact a solicitor as soon as possible to discuss your options. Specialist lawyers have years of experience identifying the responsible party in cases where liability is uncertain.

How much compensation can I claim for a bursitis injury?

The amount of money you could claim for your bursitis 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 bursitis 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

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 a bursitis 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

Bursitis injury compensation amounts

The following bursitis injury payouts refer to the Guidelines for the Assessment of General Damages in Personal Injury Cases, Fourteenth Edition by the Judicial College.

These tables are used by solicitors or by the courts as a starting point when calculating your compensation.

Example Amount
Ankle injury
Full recovery or with mild ongoing symptoms £10,960 to £21,200
Arm injury
Serious injury with long-lasting effects £15,300 to £31,220
Elbow injury
Some long-term problems £12,480 to £25,510
Foot injury
Metatarsal fracture with permanent symptoms £10,960 to £19,920
Knee injury
Mild long-term symptoms £11,820 to £20,880
Shoulder injury
Fracture of clavicle £6,290 to £10,180

What is the average injury compensation for a bursitis 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 a bursitis injury will depend entirely on your specific circumstances.

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

See the injury table above for some examples.

What if I am not yet sure of the extent of my injury?

If you have not yet sought medical attention, your solicitor will arrange a medical assessment for you ASAP. If you are awaiting test results, a claim can still be started. Once the extent of the injuries are known, the settlement can be calculated.

Bursitis injury compensation calculator

Calculating how much compensation you can claim for a bursitis 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 bursitis injury claim could be worth now:

Calculate compensation

How long does a bursitis claim take?

The length of time needed to win compensation for bursitis can vary considerably.

For instance, a straightforward liability accepted injury claim could be settled in a couple of months. If thedefendant denies liability, the process might take longer. Typically, an injury claim takes between 4 and 9 months. See:

How long will my claim take?

Will I still be able to claim for a bursitis injury after the law changes in April 2020?

The law relating to personal injury claims is changing in April 2020.

You will no longer be able to claim no win, no fee compensation using a solicitor for lower value claims (under £5,000).

In addition, compensation for whiplash and other soft-tissue injuries will be reduced.

Caring and sensitive support

Your solicitor will handle your bursitis injury claim 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 is Bursitis?

A bursa is a fluid-filled sac found across the human body, but especially in joints such as the knees and elbows. Their function is to cushion and lubricate the area around muscles and stop them from rubbing against the bones.

Putting repeated pressure on the bursae (the plural of bursa) may cause them to chafe or swell - a condition known as Bursitis (Beat Knee or Beat Elbow). Cellulitis, a related condition, is caused when bacteria penetrate the bursae following infection or trauma.

Inflammation of the bursae causes tremendous pain which makes carrying out everyday activities such as kneeling or crawling virtually impossible.

Often, a person suffering from Bursitis or Cellulitis will not be able to able to undertake their job in the way they normally would, or at all.

Which occupations are susceptible to Bursitis and Cellulitis?

Bursitis occurs when the joints are overused, rubbed or injured. The condition is common among employees who frequently kneel as part of their job, such as:

  • Cleaners
  • Bricklayers
  • Mechanics
  • Labourers
  • Miners
  • Carpet Fitters
  • Utility workers.

How do I know if I have Bursitis?

Seeking medical attention at an early stage can slow the development of the condition, and can provide valuable medical evidence if you decide to seek compensation from your employer at a later date.

The joint will swell and become very painful. Sometimes, the inflammation is so severe that the affected joint will not bend or even move.

Diagnosis is via a physical examination conducted by a general practitioner. The doctor may ask about the type of activity that was undertaken in the weeks or months leading up to the inflammation. He or she may also take a sample of the fluid from the affected bursa sac. The sample is analysed for the crystals and bacteria associated with Cellulitis.

The NHS Bursitis resource has specific information on the common symptoms of Bursitis and recommendations for the proper care of the affected area.

Is an employer liable for their employee's Bursitis?

Employers have a duty under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 to provide a safe working environment for their employees. As part of that duty, they must assess each job for possible health and safety hazards, including the risk that a worker could possibly develop 'beat knee' if they regularly kneel or crawl during work tasks.

Workers at risk of developing Bursitis or Cellulitis should be protected in a way that is reasonable having regard to the nature of the job. Safety measures include implementing a different work process to reduce the pressure on the worker's joints or issuing protective clothing or equipment.

If an employer does not take reasonable steps to protect their employees in this way, and Bursitis develops or is aggravated as a result, then the employee may be able to make a claim for compensation.

Time limits for making a Bursitis compensation claim

A Bursitis Compensation Claim must be brought within three years of:

  • the initial diagnosis of the condition; or
  • the date that a link is made between the condition and the type of work that has been done.

In many cases, claimants can make a No Win, No Fee Claim even if their employer has gone out of business.

How did your injury occur?

The claims process that your solicitor follows will vary, depending on how the injury occurred:

No win, no fee, no risk

No win, no fee takes all of the risk out of making a bursitis injury claim. If you don't win any compensation, you won't have to pay your solicitor any legal fees.

Our no win, no fee guarantee

Our no win, no fee guarantee means there is absolutely no financial risk in making a bursitis injury claim, even if you don't win your claim.

What do I pay if I win my bursitis 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 bursitis injury claim?

If your bursitis injury claim is not successful then you won't have to pay your solicitor any fees. Your solicitor may take out insurance to ensure there will be nothing to pay.

Read more about making a No win, no fee claim

Is there a catch?

The Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA) sets out the terms between you and your solicitor., No Win No Fee is a regulated activity and as such there should be no nasty surprises in the agreement. Nevertheless, it is recommended that you read the agreement carefully and ask any questions if you are unsure.

Read more about making a No win, no fee claim

How can Quittance help?

Your solicitor will fight for the best possible compensation settlement for you, 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, and 9.30am to 5pm on Sunday.

Call us FREE 0800 612 7456 or arrange a callback:

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Bursitis 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 about claiming on behalf of another person.

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.

Read more about claiming compensation if you were partly responsible for an accident.

How long do I have to make a bursitis injury claim?

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

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

Can I claim for a bursitis 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 612 7456 to find out if you are still able to claim bursitis injury compensation.

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

Calculate your claim limitation date

Will I have to go to court?

Highly unlikely. The vast majority of claims that are settled by the 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.

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

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.

Read more: Will I have to visit a solicitor's office?

Can I get an early compensation payment?

If you suffer financial hardship as a result of an injury, you may be able to claim an interim compensation payment.

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.

Read more about interim compensation payments.

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.

Read more about this Quittance Legal Expert