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Express Stands by Injured Mechanic and Secures £15,000 in Compensation

Client stories

Freddie, a professional mechanic, suffered a significant hand injury fixing an industrial vehicle. The company that contracted him to do the job strongly denied any liability and maintained that the cause of the accident was Freddie’s failure to pay attention. Express stood by Freddie and his account as to how the accident happened. Following the issuing of court papers liability was eventually conceded, and Express were able to negotiate a settlement award of £15,000 in compensation without the need to attend trial. This is Freddie’s story…

Robert Weeden, Principal Partner, Express Solicitors said: “Freddie’s’ case is a great example of supporting our clients through the ups and downs of the claim process and, importantly, believing in them. We had to trust that in the fullness of time, we would be able to achieve a result for him, and we were delighted that we were able to do so.”

The Accident

Freddie had just started as a self-employed mechanic for a business dealing with industrial vehicles and machinery. His working arrangement was self-employed on a contracted basis. On the day of the accident, he was called to help fix the hydraulics on a 3-tonne excavator alongside a senior member of the team. When lifting the cab to inspect the problem his colleague allegedly without warning dropped the cab door, which crushed Freddie’s left hand. After wrapping his hand up in a bandage, he left the job with his colleague and went to the hospital.

The Aftermath

Freddie had an X-ray that revealed he hadn’t broken any bones in his hand but had sustained tendon and nerve damage. His wound required stiches and he was assigned a course of physiotherapy to aid his recovery.

The injury happened to Freddie’s dominant hand which made his recovery more challenging. He was unable to work for a couple of days due to pain and when he did return, he was put on light duties. Following the injury his contract ceased with the firm.

Unfortunately, Freddie’s symptoms worsened, and he lost feeling in both his third and fourth fingers, which resulted in him being unable to clench a fist which impacted day to day activities such as driving.

More physiotherapy followed, before it was decided surgery was the best option to restore feeling in his fingers.

It was relatively successful, but Freddie has accepted he will never have full sensation back.

Seeking legal help

Freddie turned to Express for help. Robert Weeden, who represented Freddie said: “Right from the start, when we began handling the case, his employer strongly denied any wrongdoing. They claimed that Freddie’s injury occurred because he accidentally knocked over a block of wood that was holding the cab door open. They accused Freddie of being distracted by his phone and not paying attention to the task at hand.”

In summary, his employer firmly believed they had no case to answer.

In support of their defence to the claim, the defendants introduced an accident book filled out by the employer on Freddie’s behalf, which corroborated their narrative.

Crucially, it had been signed by Freddie. Reflecting on this evidence, Robert added: “Initially, evidence like this would seem highly detrimental. But with our experience we were undeterred and realised we needed to relook at the case, listen to Freddie’s response to the new evidence, and delved deeper into the safety practices of the firm.”

Our stance

Reacting to the defendant’s rejection of liability and supporting evidence our team argued that there was doubt over the credibility of the accident book.

Further to this, we didn’t believe he had been given the appropriate training or equipment to work safely. Nor was his colleague, the senior member of the team, competent in assessing the health and safety risks that were present that day.


Thanks to the work of our team to pull the evidence and counter arguments together we felt confident in our case and proceeded with starting the court process. In doing so, we successfully got the defendant to agree the issue of fault on an 80/20 split on liability in Freddie’s favour.

This meant that Robert Weeden was able to negotiate a settlement on Freddie’s behalf without the need to attend trial.

Freddie was awarded £15,000 in compensation to aid his recovery. He has now found new employment and is now able to move on with his life.

Robert Weeden concluded:

“As a team we are delighted to have got a positive result for Freddie, and I am very pleased to hear he has found new employment. It can be very easy in cases like this to ‘throw the towel in’ and say the evidence is against us and the defendant is adamant there is no case to answer. But from experience, this is exactly the point where you need to remain resolute, listen to your client, and look more broadly at the evidence available.”

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