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Crush injury claims – How to claim compensation for a crush injury at work

If you’ve suffered a crush injury due to your employer’s negligence, you could claim for compensation. Speak to us today to find out your legal rights to claiming for compensation.

Last updated on June 10th, 2022.

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Key points for making an injury claim

The most important things to remember when claiming for a crush injury at work:

  • You can claim if you accident was caused by your employer’s negligence
  • Common crush injury can be caused by faulty machinery or objects falling from a height
  • You generally have three years to make a claim, though there are exceptions
  • Compensation amounts are calculated on how serious your injury is and how it has affected your life.
  • You can claim on a No win, no fee basis

Crush injury claims

If you’ve suffered from a crush injury at work that wasn’t your fault, you could make a crush injury compensation claim. Crush injuries can have devastating consequences on your physical and mental health. They can often occur in hazardous workplaces.

The most common crush injuries are on the fingers, hands, legs, or in some cases, the torso. These can all have life-changing impacts, from severe pain to being unable to work.

At Express Solicitors, we have more than 20 years’ experience in settling accident at work claims, and have successfully claimed millions for our clients. If you suffered a crush injury that wasn’t your fault, call us to start your claim.

When can I claim compensation for a crush injury?

If you’ve suffered a crush injury in the workplace, you may be able to claim under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. You’ll need to be able to prove that your employer has not followed these guidelines, for example, they may not have carried out risk assessments, or they may not have trained you properly.

Employers are legally obliged to provide a safe and secure environment for workers, and ensure they are properly trained for the job. This includes construction site management companies, contractors and other bodies working in the industry. They are also responsible for the safety of visitors to the site.

In simple terms, this means that your employer must:

  1. Keep the workplace and access to the workplace safe
  2. Carry out regular inspections and act on any issues
  3. Prevent falls from a height and make sure scaffolding is safe
  4. Provide appropriate training including Health and Safety, manual handling, COSSH (for chemicals) and any specific equipment.
  5. Make sure safety signs are appropriately displayed.
  6. Keep all equipment properly maintained and safe.
  7. Make sure workers have access to adequate protective clothing.

To claim compensation, it must be proven that the organisation responsible for health and safety has been negligent and failed to comply with their statutory duties. In such cases, the employer will be found liable and the claimant will receive compensation.

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How much compensation can I claim for a crush injury?

As every circumstance is different, there is no one-size-fits-all amount for crush injury claims. Rather, our expert solicitors will look at your case and assess how serious your injury was, and how it’s affected your life.

We may also look at sources like the Judicial Board Guidelines. These offer estimates depending on the body part that is injured, and the seriousness of the crush injury. For example:

  • Back injuries with permanent symptoms can be as much as £55,000
  • Internal organ damage can be as much as £100,000
  • Severe hand injuries can be as much as £87,000.

Injuries that are severe and long-lasting, for example the inability to use one of your hands, will result in much higher payouts. We will listen to you sensitively and work to get you as much No win, no fee compensation as possible. We can also help with early compensation (interim) payments, which are a sum of money from the final compensation amount to tide you over while you wait.

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Compensation amounts are estimated based on the level of injury below

How is compensation for crushing injuries calculated?

Our experienced legal team will calculate your crush injury compensation based on a number of different factors. You should be ready to offer as much evidence as possible, particularly with loss of earnings, as this can all contribute. Your final compensation amount will be based on:

  • How serious your injury is, and any psychological side effects
  • Loss of earnings from time off work or inability to go to job interviews
  • Adjustments to the home
  • Physical therapies
  • Changes to your daily lifestyle.

In legal terms, physical injuries are known as ‘general damages’, whereas other financial losses are known as ‘special damages’. We may also be able to help you with early compensation payments – this is a percentage of your total No win, no fee compensation that is awarded beforehand to tide you over.

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How long after my crush injury can I make a claim for compensation?

Generally speaking, you will have three years from the date of the accident, or the date of your crush injury diagnosis, to make a claim. We would advise getting in touch as soon as possible so that you can gather evidence more easily.

In some circumstances, you can have more than three years to claim:

  • If you were “mentally incapacitated” – that is, you had a brain injury and were not well enough to claim
  • If the accident happened abroad
  • If the injury was caused by a piece of equipment which was found to be faulty later on. In this case, you would have three years from the date the fault was discovered, for example through a product recall.
  • If you were under 18, you can claim up until your 21st

What are the most common types of crushing injuries at work?

Crush injuries are most often the result of an accident at work. Hazardous environments such as construction sites, factories, warehouses and agricultural sites present the biggest risks.

The most common types of crush injuries involve the hands or fingers, though in some cases there may be damage to muscles and internal organs. Some common crush injuries include:

  • One or more crushed fingers
  • Internal injuries – common after collisions, such as with forklift trucks
  • Head injuries from falling objects
  • Hand/arm crushing when using moving parts of machinery.

Any type of jam, pinch or squashing underneath or between objects is classed as a crush injury. Sometimes the pressure can be severe, damaging bones and internal organs. In the most extreme cases, crushing injuries could lead to amputation.

No matter how serious your injury, our expert solicitors will listen to you and strive to get you the compensation you deserve.

We understand the financial impact of an accident.

In 99% of cases, we recovered more compensation than the insurer’s first offer. We’ll provide financial security with our interim payments wherever possible, meaning you don’t need to rush into an offer that is lower than you’re legally entitled to.

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Claiming for crush injuries on building sites

In the case of crush accidents in the workplace, your employer has a duty of care to keep you safe. This is particularly important for accidents on building sites or construction sites, which also need to adhere to:

By law, construction employers and site managers must:

  • Give staff a safety induction for the site
  • Make staff aware of risks and how to access first aid
  • Keep signs clearly displayed
  • Ensure staff understand how to stay safe
  • Provide proper personal protective equipment
  • Offer adequate manual handling and lifting training
  • Offer proper training for tools and machinery.

We can help you make a claim if you feel your employer has failed to uphold these standards.

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That’s right, we provide unlimited legal support for our prospective clients. Not sure if you have a claim, or if you even want to make a claim? You can speak with us for as long as you like and as many times as you like. We’ll let you know your legal rights, completely free of charge and with no obligation to make a claim.

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How to make a crush injury claim

We recommend you contact us as soon as you’re physically well enough to do so. This is because the crush injury claims process needs evidence, and the sooner you can get in touch, the more accurate that evidence will be. We’ll take you through the claim in three easy steps:

  1. Get in touch with us by phone or fill out a contact form to request a call back. This first conversation is a consultation, during which we’ll ask for details about the incident and any evidence you can provide.
  2. Once we have all your evidence, for example receipts, medical records and photos, our legal teams will start to make the claim against your employer/whoever was at fault. The compensation is usually paid by the Employer’s Liability Insurance, though there are exceptions to this.
  3. If your claim is successful, you’ll be awarded compensation minus any legal fees. In some cases, these fees are paid out of the employer’s insurance, so your expenses will be minimal. We may also be able to offer interim payments while you wait.

At Express Solicitors, we offer more than 20 years’ experience handling accident at work claims, and have won our clients millions in compensation. Our expert teams will listen to the details of your crush injury and take everything into account – not just the physical damage. We specialise in going above and beyond for our clients to get the biggest no win, no fee settlement possible.

You deserve to feel safe at work. If you’ve been let down, contact the Express Solicitors team today.

What information do I need to make a claim?

If you’ve suffered an injury at work, you’ll first need to go through your workplace’s procedures to make sure the crush injury is recorded correctly. Hold on to any records of your injury, for example, a log in the incident book.

To support your crush injury compensation, we may also ask for photographs, CCTV footage, witness statements, medical records or receipts to prove financial losses. If the injury took place at work, however, you need to be able to prove that your employer was at fault.

Your employer must keep all risks and hazards to a minimum by carrying out appropriate measures, risk assessments, and training. Your claim will need to prove that the employer failed to meet these Health and Safety standards and regulations.

You may be able to prove that they did not act responsibly, for example:

  • Reproducing training records which show your equipment/Health and Safety training is overdue
  • Reproducing inspection records for equipment which show that it was faulty/overdue for checks
  • Taking photographs of potential hazards that could cause machine malfunctions e.g. loose wiring.

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Contact us with the comfort of knowing you’ll never be at financial risk when you claim with us. We cover all legal costs, never charge upfront fees, and we only get paid if you do.

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We understand how an accident can affect your financial position. We always look to collect an early compensation (interim) payment where possible.

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With legal specialists for every type of accident claim, we can take over your claim at any stage from another solicitors. We take pride in winning cases other firms turn down.

What can I do if a fellow employee caused my crush injury?

In these cases, your employer would still be classed as at fault, and so we would make a claim against their Employer’s Liability Insurance. In legal terms, all employers in the UK are subject to “vicarious liability”, which means it is their responsibility to make sure their staff behave safely.

What if I was partly responsible for my crush injury?

If the court rules that both you and your employer were partly to blame, this would be considered “contributory negligence”. For example, you may have been using a machine that caused the injury, but your employer may have failed to train you properly. In these cases, the court would determine how much both parties were at fault. If you were half at fault, you would receive half the standard compensation amount.

How can I prove that my employer was not acting responsibly?

You can make a no win, no fee crush injury claim against your employer if you can prove that they did not do one or more of the following:

  • Offer initial and ongoing training
  • Provide protective clothing, and equipment for machinery
  • Use appropriate signage
  • Carry out risk assessments and equipment maintenance
  • Replace faulty machines
  • Offer Health and Safety guidelines to all employees.

What should I do after a crush injury at work?

First and foremost, you should seek medical attention. You’ll need to hold on to any medical notes you get from your doctor, which may be used as evidence. If your employer does not have an accident book, you should send a letter to them detailing the injury, and keep a copy for your records.

You may also have to report your injuries to the RIDDOR – the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences regulations. Any report they make may also help you when producing evidence. When you’re well enough to do so, gather as much evidence as possible and be ready to present it to the team at Express Solicitors. No matter how small, it could help your crush injury compensation claim.

Frequently asked questions

Can I claim for a crush injury if working on a zero-hour contract?

Yes, you can. Your employer has a duty of care to protect you in the workplace by adhering to Health and Safety measures – even if you’re not working full time.

Can I claim for a crush injury if I'm a self-employed contractor?

Though you are self-employed, the person paying you is still responsible to provide a safe workplace. If you can prove that this person has not stuck to Health and Safety practices, you could claim.

Do I need to attend a medical?

You should always seek medical advice after an injury, no matter how small. However, you may also have to attend medical examinations. Our legal teams may recommend an expert to review your injury and support your crush injury claim, or your employer may ask for you to have a secondary medical to get a second opinion.

Average compensation amounts for crush injuries at work

Part of body Severity of injury Amount of compensation Types of injuries
Head Minor £1,880.00 to £10,890.00 Covers brain damage with recovery within a few weeks. Higher compensation if symptoms include headaches.
Head Moderate £13,430.00 to £112,130.00 Symptoms ranging from poor concentration, lower and higher risk of epileptic attacks, minor personality changes, depression, more severe intellectual impairment, or injuries/symptoms leading to a vegetative state.
Head Serious £186,890.00 £240,590.00 Covers reduced life expectancy, serious physical symptoms, serious changes to personality or intellect, large dependence on others due to paralysis or otherwise.
Head Severe £240,590.00 to £344,640.00 Covers minimally conscious state (life expectancy less than 15 years), severe disability, brain damage with little/no response, vegetative states needing full-time nursing.
Eye Severe £56,080.00to £229,260.00 Complete blindness on one/both eyes or severe visual impairment on one/both eyes.
Face Minor £1,460.00 to £7,460.00 Light or no scarring on the face, but no fractures, loss/damage of one/two front teeth, simple fractures of the jaw or nose, but with a possibility of complete recovery.
Face Serious £15,320.00 to £26,010.00 More serious fractures such as a broken jaw or nose, breaking/damage/loss of several teeth.
Face Severe £26,010.00 to £38,850.00 Severe injuries resulting in facial disfigurement, several jaw fractures, chronic tooth pain, and scarring. May lead to eating restrictions or higher risk of joint arthritis. Covers negative effects on mental health.
Ear/ hearing Minor Up to £5,980.00 Possible Noise Induced Hearing Loss (NIHL), slight/occasional tinnitus.
Ear/ hearing Moderate £12,700.00 to £25,350.00 Partial hearing loss or mild to severe tinnitus.
Ear/ hearing Serious £25,350.00 to £38,850.00 Complete deafness in one ear. Severity varies based on additional symptoms (e.g. dizziness, tinnitus, etc.).
Ear/ hearing Severe £77,430.00 to £120,040.00 Complete deafness in both ears. Higher compensation for child injuries also resulting in a loss of speech.

Compensation amounts for back, neck, shoulders and upper body injuries

Part of body Severity of injury Amount of compensation Types of injuries
Neck Minor Up to £6,680.00 Soft tissue injuries or whiplash with recovery within 3 – 24 months. Compensation factors include severity of pain and amount of negative effects on everyday life.
Neck Moderate £7,410.00 to £47,760.00 Covers injuries that accelerated a pre-existing condition, disc lesions, cervical spondylosis, serious limitation of movement, permanent and/or recurring pain, all caused by fractures or dislocations.
Neck Severe £56,100.00 to £139,210.00 Serious fractures, severe soft tissue damage, chronic pain conditions, disc damage, partial paraplegia, or significant, permanent disability.
Back Minor £2,090.00 to £10,670.00 Includes lighter strains, sprains, disc prolapses, and soft tissue injuries. Recovery between 3 months and 5 years.
Back Moderate £11,730.00 to £26,050.00 Includes: spinal fusion, compressed or fractured lumbar spine (possibly resulting in higher risk of osteoarthritis and constant pain), prolapsed discs and other injuries that may require surgery and a continued acceleration/worsening of a pre-existing back condition.
Back Severe £36,390.00 to £151,070.00 Typically requires surgery. Injuries include: damaged spinal cord and partial paralysis, psychological issues, loss of bladder and/or bowel function, disc lesions, impaired movement, arthritis, etc.
Shoulder Minor Up to £6,730.00 Soft tissue injury resulting in pain. Full recovery between 3 – 24 months.
Shoulder Serious £10,890.00 to £16,380.00 Fractured humerus, clavicle or rotator cuff needing surgery.
Shoulder Severe £16,380.00 to £40,970.00 Significant disability caused by severe damage to the neck or brachial plexus.
Pelvis & hips Minor £3,370.00 to £10,750.00 Complete recovery after minor soft tissue injuries. Little or no disability within 2 years.
Pelvis & hips Moderate £10,750.00 to £33,430.00 No serious disability, but covers injuries requiring hip operations, replacement of hips (or the need for either in the future).
Pelvis & hips Severe £33,430.00 to £111,690.00 Severe hip/pelvis fractures resulting in bowel damage or spinal fusion, childbirth complications, hip replacement, and/or leading to higher likelihood of future surgery.
Scarring (not facial) Minor £2,020.00 to £7,380.00 One noticeable scare or several superficial, unsightly scars on the legs, arms, or hands.
Scarring (not facial Moderate Up to £7,380.00 Full recovery within 2 years, up to a partial recovery with symptoms that are not largely debilitating.
Scarring (not facial Severe £6,680.00 to £19,390.00 Several noticeable laceration scars or a single disfiguring scar.

Compensation amounts for arm, hand, and finger injuries

Part of body Severity of injury Amount of compensation Types of injuries
Arm Mild £5,630.00 to £16,380.00 Fractured forearm.
Arm Moderate £16,380.00 to £33,430.00 Serious arm injury leading to long-lasting symptoms.
Arm Serious £33,430.00 to £111,690.00 Serious injury resulting in an inability to use the arm(s) to some extent. Does not result in amputation.
Arm Severe £82,040.00 to £255,930.00 Results may include the amputation of one/both arms. Compensation amount will depends on amputated area, whether phantom pain is experienced, and on other effects on the quality of life.
Elbow Moderate Up to £10,750.00 Includes: tennis elbow, deep cuts, simple fractures, no permanent damage.
Elbow Serious £13,360.00 to £27,320.00 Results in restricted movement but does not require surgery or cause disability.
Elbow Severe £33,430.00 to £46,780.00 Injury causes severe disability or requires surgery.
Wrist Moderate Up to £8,740.00 Uncomplicated Colles fracture or minor undisplaced fractures with recovery between 1 – 2 years. May include use of plasters.
Wrist Serious £10,750.00 to £20,900.00 Soft tissue damage or broken wrist causing some permanent disability.
Wrist Severe £20,900.00to £51,070.00. Significant permanent disability or complete loss of wrist function.
Hand Minor Up to £4,050.00 Covers lacerations and crush injuries, and soft tissue injuries (recovery within 6 months).
Hand Moderate £4,780.00 to £11,330.00 Covers penetrating wounds and crush injuries resulting in permanent but non-intrusive symptoms, or soft tissue damage and deeper cuts resulting in impairment of the hand (may require surgery).
Hand Severe £24,740.00 to £171,920.00 Covers amputation and rejoining of several fingers, resulting in a clawed, impaired, or unsightly hand, amputation of one/both hands (alternatively, amputation of several fingers rendering the hand almost useless).
Finger Minor Up to £4,055.00 Includes: full-healed fractured finger bones (healed within 1 year) with/without minor scarring.
Finger Moderate £3,370.00 to £5,000.00 Includes: complete (or almost complete) recovery after broken finger, amputation or loss of a part of the little finger.
Finger Severe £10,380.00 to £31,350.00 Includes: complete amputation of one/more fingers, fractures of the index finger. Compensation depends on level of disability and suffering.
Thumb Minor Up to £4,055.00 Short-term, severe pain gone within 3 months.
Thumb Moderate £3,370.00 to £10,750.00 Covers fractures with recovery within 6 months, damage to nerves or tendons resulting in partial loss of sensation, and cosmetic thumb deformities.
Thumb Severe £10,750.00 to £46,780.00 Partial/complete amputation of the thumb, surgical wire insertions, nerve damage, fractures, inability to grip.

Compensation amounts for leg and foot injuries

Part of body Severity of injury Amount of compensation Types of injuries
Leg Minor £7,780.00 to £12,010.00 Minor injuries with recovery within a few months (e.g. soft-tissue injuries, bruising, cuts, and contusions). Slightly more severe injuries such as simple fractures of the femur, tibia, or fibula.
Leg Moderate £15,320.00 to £46,780.00 Minor fractures with partial recovery, serious soft tissue injury, injuries to one leg (e.g. broken bones, crushing injuries), ligament injuries, compound fractures leading to near certainty of arthritis or instability.
Leg Severe £46,780.00 to £240,590.00 Severe injuries resulting in extensive degloving, bone grafting, permanently reduced mobility, or amputation of one/both legs (above/below the knee).
Knee Minor Up to £11,730.00 Includes soft tissue injuries (recovery within a few months), a twisted knee, lacerations, or bruising resulting in discomfort or pain.
Knee Moderate £22,340.00 to £37,070.00 Includes: seriously damaged kneecaps, ligaments, or muscles, dislocation, a torn meniscus, acceleration injuries (over several years), resulting in ongoing discomfort or pain.
Knee Severe £44,470.00 to £82,080.00 Covers constant pain, severe disability, or muscle wastage. Higher compensation if need for surgery or injury effects quality of life.
Ankle Minor Up to £11,730.00 Smaller fractures, but bone has not been displaced. May include sprains, injured ligaments (likely leads to scarring). Smaller injuries can allow for full recovery within a year, without any scarring.
Ankle Moderate £11,730.00 to £42,710.00 Includes ligament tears, fractures, leading to smaller disabilities while standing/moving. Increased risk of osteoarthritis. Operation/cast needed. May lead to inability to work or call for special footwear.
Ankle Severe £42,710.00 to £59,480.00 Severe injury resulting in deformities, disabilities, or even amputation of the body part down the line.
Achilles Minor £6,200.00 to £10,750.00 Minor instability due to tendon damage around the ankle. Some more severe cases might involve scarring.
Achilles Moderate £10,750.00 to £17,970.00 More serious injury and partially ruptured tendon. More severe cases tend to involve disability and/or permanent scarring.
Achilles Severe £21,320.00to £32,780.00 Restricted movement of the ankle due to severed muscle tissue. Small likelihood of further improvement of limp and residual scarring.
Foot Minor Up to £11,730.00 Includes: minor fractures, lacerations or contusions (with complete recovery within 2 years), ruptured ligaments or other puncture wounds that result in chronic pain or a permanent limp.
Foot Moderate £11,730.00 to £59,730.00 Includes: metatarsal fractures resulting in permanent deformity and ongoing symptoms, fractured heels (both), restricted mobility, degloving and heel fusion.
Foot Severe £71,640.00 to £171,920.00 Injury needing amputation of one/both feet or traumatic amputation of the forefoot (to prevent need for complete amputation).
Toe Minor Up to £8,190.00 One or more broken toes with a varying recovery period. Compensation depends on presence of long-term symptoms and speed of recovery.
Toe Moderate £8,190.00 to £11,730.00 Multiple fractures, crush injuries to two/more toes, permanent disability. May have involved unsuccessful past operations.
Toe Severe £11,730.00 to £47,830.00 Severe crush injuries leading to less/surgical amputation of one or two toes (not including the big toe), amputation of all toes or the big toe.

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