As a part-time worker, you may think that you have different rights compared to full-time colleagues if you’re injured at work. In fact, that is not the case. Your employer must treat you exactly the same as any other member of staff when it comes to workplace safety. As such, if you are injured at work and your employer is to blame, you could sue them for your suffering. This guide about part-time worker injury claims will explain how to do so and examine what types of injuries you could claim for.
Our claims team is here to help if you would like advice on making a personal injury claim. We’ll review your options with you during a free consultation and could partner you with a personal injury solicitor from our team if the claim is strong enough. Importantly, if your claim is taken on, your solicitor’s No Win No Fee service means you won’t pay any legal fees whatsoever unless compensation is awarded.
What is a part-time worker?
Legally, there’s no definition of a part-time worker but, essentially, it is somebody who works fewer hours than their full-time colleagues. For example, a full-time contract in one company may mean a 35-hour week whereas, in another company, it may be a 38-hour week.
Government information states that you cannot be treated less favourably than a full-time worker just because you work part-time. As such, you are entitled to the same pay rates, holidays and training opportunities though many benefits will be calculated on a pro-rata basis.
Importantly, a part-time worker has exactly the same rights to make a personal injury claim against their employer as a full-time worker. So, if you’re a part-time worker who has been injured at work, please call our team to see if you could be eligible to claim compensation.
How are part-time staff protected legally?
All employers have a duty of care towards the well-being of their staff whilst at work. This is a legal duty established by the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and other laws. Whether you work full or part-time has no bearing on this duty of care.
That means that part-time workers should be:
- Provided with health and safety training.
- Given Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) if needed to keep them safe.
- Allowed adequate rest breaks.
To help keep all staff as safe as possible, employers must carry out regular risk assessments and make appropriate changes to reduce any dangers identified.
Additionally, part-time staff should not be excluded from any daily safety briefings just because they start at a different time from others. A proper briefing or handover must be provided where necessary.
Can I claim compensation as a part-time worker injured at work??
To avoid wasting your time, our personal injury solicitors only accept part-time worker injury claims where you have a realistic chance of being compensated. For this reason, before agreeing to work for you, they’ll check that:
- Your employer breached their duty of care through an act of negligence; and
- An accident occurred as a result of that negligence; and
- You were made ill or suffered an injury because of that accident.
Your employer is likely to pass any claim against them on to their insurance provider. In most cases, they will reject your claim unless there is ample evidence to prove how your accident occurred, why your employer was to blame and how you’ve been affected. So, we’ll explain what part-time workers should do after an accident at work shortly.
If you believe your employer is to blame for your injuries and would like to check if you could be compensated, please contact us today.
Can part-time workers be sacked following an accident at work?
The simple answer is no, you cannot be sacked simply because you decided to sue for an accident that was not your fault.
In fact, you cannot be disciplined in any way, demoted, prevented from working or treated any differently because you are taking legal action against your employer. Any such action could lead to further claims for unfair or constructive dismissal.
Examples of part-time worker accidents that can lead to a compensation claim
We can’t list every type of workplace accident that part-time employees could claim compensation for but some common examples include:
- Slips, trips and falls. You may be entitled to claim if you’ve fallen at work because of a leak or spillage that was not cleared up swiftly.
- Machinery accidents. Your employer has a duty to maintain and repair any workplace equipment so that it is safe to use. Failure to do so that causes an accident could lead to a personal injury claim.
- Falls from height. Any ladder, lift or raised platform should be erected safely and maintained properly. You should also be provided with a safety harness in some circumstances.
- Manual handling accidents. Training should be provided if your job involves lifting heavy or awkward loads regularly.
- Shelving or racking accidents. You may be entitled to claim if you’re injured by something that falls onto you because of damaged or poorly stacked racking.
- Chemical accidents. Chemicals in the workplace should always be stored correctly and ventilation should be appropriate to avoid exposure wherever possible.
Again, this is just a sample of the types of accidents at work part-time staff could claim for. So long as you’ve been injured in an accident caused by your employer’s negligence, you could be entitled to claim.
Common injuries to part-time workers
Essentially, a part-time worker injury claim could be based on any type of injury. Some of the most common that our personal injury solicitors have helped with include:
- Fractured and broken bones.
- Scalds and burn injuries.
- Back injuries.
- Soft tissue injuries (muscles, tendons and ligaments).
- Repetitive Strain Injuries (RSI).
- Industrial diseases and injuries (mesothelioma, vibration white finger, dermatitis etc).
- Cuts, lacerations and bruises.
Some workplace injuries must be reported to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). If that has happened in your case, a copy of the HSE investigation report could be obtained and used as proof to show how your accident occurred.
Providing proof for a part-time worker injury claim
If you have an accident at work as a part-time worker, there are certain steps you could take that may help if you decide to claim compensation for your injuries. They include:
- Report the accident. You should tell your line manager about your accident as soon as possible. They will need to write an accident report form about the incident (and you’re entitled to a copy).
- Collect witness details. If the accident was witnessed by anybody else, ask them for their contact information. Your solicitor may need to ask them for a statement about what happened later on.
- Go to a hospital. You should seek treatment at A&E for serious injuries or visit your GP for anything less serious. If you go on to claim, your x-rays and medical records could be requested as evidence.
- Take photographs. Try to take pictures at the accident scene to show what caused your accident, and your injury. If you’re a part-time worker, you should try to do this on the day of the accident before anything is moved, repaired or replaced.
- Request CCTV footage. If your accident was recorded by the company’s security cameras, ask for a copy of any relevant footage as soon as possible.
After taking the steps above, you may have enough proof to seek compensation for your injuries. If that’s the case, you may wish to get free legal advice about your options by speaking to a member of our team.
What can I claim compensation for?
If you make a claim against your employer for injuries sustained as a part-time worker, you should consider how you’ve suffered mentally, physically and financially. Any settlement you receive should compensate you accordingly. Some of the things you could claim compensation for include:
- Your physical pain, suffering and discomfort.
- Distress, anxiety, depression and other forms of psychiatric harm.
- Any negative impact your injuries have on your normal activities (including hobbies).
- Care costs.
- Medical expenses such as private treatment or physiotherapy.
- Loss of earnings. Future losses may also be considered.
- Fuel, parking and other travel costs linked to your injuries.
- Replacement costs for clothing or other personal property.
- Mobility aids and home adaptations if needed to help you cope with an ongoing disability.
As you can only claim once for your injury, it’s important to consider exactly how your injury has affected you before claiming. If you work with a solicitor from our panel, they’ll get a full understanding of how you’ve suffered to try and secure the maximum settlement possible.
How much compensation will I get for a part-time worker injury claim?
Whether you’re employed full or part-time, the amount of compensation you’ll receive if your claim is successful would generally be the same. The amount you’ll receive will be based on the extent of your injuries and this will be assessed by an independent medical expert.
During your examination, the specialist will assess your injuries and discuss how you’ve been affected by them with you. This will be recorded in a report and your prognosis will be explained. Once your solicitor receives their copy of the report, you’ll be given a personalised compensation estimate.
No Win, No Fee claims
Our solicitors realise that most claimants don’t want to risk their own money when making an accident at work claim. As such, any part-time worker injury claim they work on is managed on a No Win, No Fee basis.
That means that you:
- Don’t pay legal fees upfront.
- Won’t pay legal fees if the claim is lost.
- Only pay a success fee (up to 25% of any compensation received) if your claim is won.
Because you don’t need to pay for your solicitor’s work in advance, they can begin working on your claim right away. Their main goals will be to:
- Discuss your claim in detail with you so that they understand how you’ve suffered.
- Collect proof and medical records to support your part-time worker injury claim.
- File the claim with your employer.
- Manage the claims process for you so that you’re not faced with any complex questions.
- Negotiate with your employer’s insurers if any arguments over liability arise.
- Try to ensure any settlement offer is fair.
Throughout your claim, you’ll be able to ask your solicitor any questions that arise and you will be provided with regular updates.
Part-time worker injury claims time limits
In law, there is a 3-year time limit for most personal injury claims in the UK. The date from which the limitation period begins will either be:
- The date you had your accident; or
- Your date of knowledge i.e. when a doctor diagnosed your injuries or illness.
To make it easier to secure the proof needed to support your claim, we believe it’s better to begin your claim swiftly rather than wait until the last minute. In some cases, an early start to your claim may mean interim payments can be secured to help you deal with the financial implications of your injuries such as care costs or a reduced income.
Start a part-time worker injury claim today
If you’re a part-time worker who has been injured at work, why not call us on 0800 652 1345 to check whether you could be compensated? As part of your free consultation, legal advice will be provided and your options will be explained.
If your case is accepted by one of our personal injury lawyers, you won’t need to pay legal fees unless you are compensated. For most people, the No Win, No Fee service makes the claims process much less stressful.
Please call or use our online chat service if you have further questions about part-time worker injury claims.