A Guide to Claiming Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Compensation

If your life, or the life of a loved one, has been affected by a carbon monoxide poisoning we can help.

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

Introduction

Carbon monoxide is a gas which is produced from the incomplete burning of fuels such as wood, coal, oil and gas. Carbon monoxide is odourless and colourless. It is extremely dangerous when inhaled, and can cause illness and even death.

Carbon monoxide is frequently found in industrial areas, mines and garages, and can also be found in homes or offices, if a defective heater is in use for example. People often don't know carbon monoxide is present until they begin to suffer from the side effects of inhaling it.

Do I have a carbon monoxide poisoning claim?

It should be possible to make a carbon monoxide poisoning 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

Check my claim

Carbon monoxide poisoning

When carbon monoxide is inhaled into the lungs, it enters the bloodstream and depletes the amount of oxygen present in the blood. When cells in the body are deprived of oxygen they begin to die.

Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Nausea
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Vomiting
  • Abdominal pain
  • Tiredness
  • Confusion

Carbon monoxide poisoning can also be fatal.

If you have suffered from carbon monoxide poisoning at work or at home, and a third party is found to be responsible, you may be able to claim compensation for the injury caused.

Who can I claim against?

Who you make a compensation claim against will depend on where you suffered from carbon monoxide poisoning.

At home

If you suffered carbon monoxide poisoning at home you may be able to make a claim against:

  • The manufacturer of the appliance emitting carbon monoxide, if the appliance is found to be faulty.
  • The person or company who installed the appliance, if it is found to have been installed incorrectly.
  • The person or company who performed a safety inspection of your home or appliances, if they failed to recognise that the appliance was faulty.
  • If you have a carbon monoxide detector that did not work effectively, you might also be able to make a claim against the company that manufactured or installed it.
  • If you rent your home from the council, a housing association or a private landlord, you may be able to make a claim against them for negligence, for failing to ensure the safety of the property.

At work

It is your employer's duty to keep you safe at work. Therefore they are responsible for ensuring that you are not exposed to dangerous levels of carbon monoxide. If you have suffered from carbon monoxide poisoning at work, this may be due to your employer's negligence, and you may be able to make a compensation claim.

How much compensation can I claim for carbon monoxide poisoning?

The amount of money you could claim for your carbon monoxide poisoning 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 carbon monoxide poisoning 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 carbon monoxide poisoning? (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

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

Your carbon monoxide poisoning 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 carbon monoxide poisoning 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.

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.

Can I claim for prescription costs?

Special damages?are awarded for costs or losses incurred as a result of the carbon monoxide poisoning injury. Damages can include loss of earnings, treatment cost and any other 'out-of-pocket' expenses such as prescriptions.?

Calculate my claim

How long do I have to make a carbon monoxide poisoning claim?

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

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

Can I claim for a carbon monoxide poisoning after 3 years?

The general rule is no, you cannot start a claim more than three years after a carbon monoxide poisoning.

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

Will I still be able to claim for a carbon monoxide poisoning 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 carbon monoxide poisoning 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.

No win, no fee - the facts

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

No win, no fee guarantee

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

What do I pay if I win my carbon monoxide poisoning claim?

Your injury solicitor will receive a success fee which is deducted from your compensation, after your claim is settled. The solicitor's success fee can be up to 25%. Your solicitor will agree a success fee with you before you start your claim.

What do I pay if I do not win my carbon monoxide poisoning claim?

If your carbon monoxide poisoning claim is not successful then you do not have to pay any legal fees whatsoever.

Read more about No win, no fee

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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Carbon Monoxide Poisoning 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