A Guide to Claiming Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Compensation

If you have been affected by carpal tunnel syndrome we can help.

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

Carpal tunnel syndrome statistics

Carpal tunnel syndrome is a legally recognised industrial disease where the median nerve passing into the hand becomes compressed.

This condition causes pain, tingling, or weakness in the forearm and hand. Health and Safety Executive (HSE) figures show that 5,750 people were assessed for disablement benefit from work-related carpal tunnel syndrome between 2003 and 2013.

In the workplace, almost 90% of carpal tunnel syndrome cases involve male workers.

The most common cause of work-related carpal tunnel syndrome is regular, repetitive strain being placed on the wrists, hands, or fingers.

Office worker

Symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome

The main symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome affect feeling and motor capability in the hand. Symptoms can affect the thumb, index, middle and ring fingers. These symptoms can result in difficulties maintaining a grip on objects and operating machinery.

The pain associated with carpal tunnel syndrome is primarily severe numbness. This pain can be so intense it can wake individuals from sleep.

Surgery may be required to alleviate symptoms. Following carpal tunnel syndrome surgery, up to three months recovery time may typically be needed.

Do I have a carpal tunnel syndrome claim?

It should be possible to make a carpal tunnel syndrome claim if:

  • you were diagnosed in the last three years and;
  • someone else, such as your employer, was to blame.

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

To get impartial advice on whether you have a claim, speak to injury claims expert on 0800 612 7456.

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

Read more

What if the employer has gone bust?

Even if an employer or their insurer has gone out of business, a former worker may still be able to make a work-related accident claim.

Employers are legally required to carry Employer's Liability Insurance. This insurance ensures that protection is in place for employees affected by work-related accidents or industrial disease. The majority of successful claims are not paid out by the employer but by the employer's insurance company.

In extreme cases, where an employer and their insurer have both ceased trading, and no other responsible party can be traced, compensation may still be available through the Financial Services Compensation Scheme.

Read more: Can I claim compensation if my employer has gone bust?

Can I claim Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit?

Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit (IIDB) is a non-contributory, no-fault weekly benefit paid to workers and former workers who become disabled because of an accident at work or due to certain industrial diseases.

Anyone who has sustained a disability as a result of injuries or diseases arising from work may be eligible to claim Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit.

Read more

Do I need a final diagnosis before I can make a carpal tunnel syndrome claim?

If you have been injured and are awaiting the results, you should still seek legal advice as soon as possible. The sooner you start a carpal tunnel syndrome claim after an accident, the more likely your claim is to succeed.

Check my claim

Claiming compensation from your employer

You can claim from the employer responsible for the work-related tasks, machinery or equipment, that caused carpal tunnel syndrome to develop.

Relevant legislation which may support your personal injury claim includes:

  • Health and Safety at Work Act 1974, Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999, Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992 - which place a duty of care on employers to provide safe working conditions, suitable equipment, and appropriate safety training an supervision for their employees.
  • Health and Safety (Display Screen Equipment) Regulations 1992 - which provide health and safety guidelines for working with display screen equipment. These include guidelines for safety measures such as the provision of ergonomically designed chairs.

Your solicitor will assess whether your employer has been in breach of health and safety regulations. If the employer is proven negligent, they may be held liable to pay compensation for your claimant's carpal tunnel syndrome injury.

Making a claim for carpal tunnel syndrome

It is important to begin your claim as soon as you are aware you have developed carpal tunnel syndrome.

This is because there is a statutory time limit on making personal injury claims. Claims must be made within three years of the claimant's knowledge of their injury.

Your solicitor will assess the value of your claim based on supporting evidence, including medical reports. Compensation settlements can include amounts for:

  • Medical treatment
  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of amenity -personal adjustments to claimant's working, social and personal life
  • Loss of current and future earnings
  • Expenses related to on-going care, such as travel costs for hospital visits

Settlement amounts relate to the severity of the injury caused, and the overall impact of the injury on the claimant.

How much compensation can I claim for carpal tunnel syndrome?

The amount of money you could claim for your carpal tunnel syndrome 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 carpal tunnel syndrome 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 carpal tunnel syndrome? (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

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome compensation amounts

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

Injury Example Amount
Minor Wrist injury Wrist fracture recovering within one year £2,810 to £3,790
Moderate Wrist injury Colles wrist fracture Around £5,920
Moderate Wrist injury Taking around two years to heal completely Up to £8,160
Serious Wrist injury Causing permanent pain and stiffness £10,040 to £19,530
Serious Wrist injury Serious with significant permanent problems £19,530 to £31,220
Severe Wrist injury Severe with loss of function of the wrist £37,960 to £47,720
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What is the average injury compensation for a carpal tunnel syndrome 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 carpal tunnel syndrome will depend entirely on your specific circumstances.

Your carpal tunnel syndrome 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.

Find out what your carpal tunnel syndrome claim could be worth now

Assessing a claim's value at the outset can be complicated, particularly if you have multiple injuries.

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.

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 claim

How long do I have to make a carpal tunnel syndrome claim?

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

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

Can I claim for a carpal tunnel syndrome after 3 years?

The general rule is no, you cannot start a claim more than three years after a carpal tunnel syndrome.

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

Will I still be able to claim for a carpal tunnel syndrome 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 carpal tunnel syndrome 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.

Will I get advice on treatment options?

As part of the carpal tunnel syndrome claims process, your solicitor can arrange a thorough and independent needs assessment. The assessment may offer advice on treatment, access to treatments and therapies not always available on the NHS and co-ordination with rehabilitation providers, occupational therapists, physiotherapists etc

No win, no fee - the facts

With a no win, no fee agreement, your solicitor agrees that you will have no legal fees to pay if your claim is not successful.

Our no win, no fee promise

Our no win, no fee guarantee means there is zero financial risk in making a carpal tunnel syndrome claim - even if you don't win your claim.

What do I pay if I win my carpal tunnel syndrome 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%. You and your solicitor can agree the success fee before you start your claim.

What do I pay if I do not win my carpal tunnel syndrome claim?

If your carpal tunnel syndrome claim is not successful then you do not have to pay any legal fees at all.

Read more about how no win, no fee works

Please note, 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 can Quittance help?

Our highly experienced panel of solicitors have an excellent track record of winning injury 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:

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Carpal Tunnel Syndrome 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 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*

Road accident claims

4 to 9 months

Work accident claims

6 to 9 months

Medical negligence claims

12 to 36 months

Industrial disease claims

12 to 18 months

Public place or occupiers’ liability claims

6 to 9 months

MIB claims (uninsured drivers)

3 to 4 months**

CICA claims (criminal assault)

12 to 18 months**

*RTA and other claims processed through the Ministry of Justice portal can settle faster.
**Official Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) Government agency and Motor Insurers’ Bureau (MIB) figures.

Read more about how long personal injury claims take.

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.

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