Cara Priestland

£7,500 for Cara’s shoulder injury in employer’s liability case

On 23 May 2009 Cara Priestland was working at a care home in Benfleet, Essex, when she injured her shoulder shutting a heavy sash window.

Employees at the care home had already complained to managers about the cumbersome windows, which had to be closed every evening for safety and security reasons, but nothing had been done about them.

Cara said:  “I was checking the bedroom window of one of the residents and saw the top of the double glazed sash window was open.  Of course I had to shut the window but it was heavy and there were no handles or grips so I had to put my hands underneath and pushed it up.  It was then that I injured my shoulder.

“The pain was excruciating, but I had to stay at work to ensure the care home fulfilled its legal requirement for the number of staff onsite.  I just took pain killers and put my arm in sling, but stayed on carrying out light duties while my arm started to bruise and swell.  I went to A&E the following day where I was told I had torn a ligament in my shoulder and was advised to take some time off work.

“The annoying thing about it all was that we’d complained about the windows several times to the management, but nothing had been done about it.  It was this, coupled with the severe pain I was in, that prompted me to pursue a claim with Express Solicitors.  My employers had failed to provide a safe system of work and exposed me to foreseeable risk of injury.

“The way the firm handled the claim was brilliant and I was impressed with the level of communication throughout.  If my solicitor, Zaynab Awan said she was going to send a letter, I got it within a few days and every phone call I made to her was returned straight away if she couldn’t answer first time.

“I received £7,500 and was delighted with that level of compensation.  It hasn’t gone to waste either – I used the money to relocate to Cardigan Bay in Wales and be close to my family.”

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