Shop owners have a duty of care to try and keep both their staff and customers as safe as possible. However, accidents in shops do happen and can cause quite serious injuries. Where accidents occur because of the shop owner’s negligence, the injured party may have grounds to claim compensation for their suffering. This article about shop accident claims will look at the scenarios that might lead to a claim, what any compensation could cover and how the claims process works.
ClaimsAction.co.uk has a team of specialist advisors on hand if you’d like to discuss claiming for a shop accident. They’ll listen to what happened, review any proof and explain your options during a free initial consultation. If it looks like you have a chance of receiving compensation for your injuries, you could be partnered with a personal injury lawyer from our panel. They’ll manage your shop accident claim on a No Win, No Fee basis if they agree to represent you. As such, you won’t need to pay legal fees unless compensation is awarded.
To learn more about shop accident claims, please read on. Alternatively, call 0800 652 1345 today to discuss your options.
Can I claim compensation for an accident in a shop?
Legally, the Occupiers Liability Act 1984 places a duty on shop owners to try and keep their premises as safe as possible for customers and visitors. Similarly, the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 means retailers need to take reasonable steps to protect their staff at work.
If you’ve been injured in a shop as a customer, one of our personal injury solicitors may agree to represent you if:
- The shop owner has breached their duty of care towards you (through negligence); and
- A shop accident occurred as a result; in which
- You sustained an injury.
As part of your initial consultation, your eligibility to claim will be checked to see if you have a reasonable chance of being compensated. You can improve your chances of winning your claim by collecting supporting proof. As such, we’ll look at what might help later on.
Common accidents in shops
Realistically, there are too many potential accidents in shops to list here. However, some of the more common include:
- Tripping on stock littered across the shop floor.
- Slipping on a spillage in a shop that was not cleared up quickly.
- Being struck by fixtures and fittings that were not secured properly.
- Stock falling on you because of faulty or damaged shelving.
- Slipping on a recently cleaned shop floor where warning signs were not used.
- Getting stuck in a poorly maintained lift in a shop.
- Being hit by a stock cage or trolley because staff couldn’t see where they were going.
- Being struck by falling stock that was stored insecurely above head height.
These are just some examples of shopping accidents that could lead to compensation claims. If you’ve been injured in any other way, you could still be entitled to compensation so please get in touch.
Common injuries caused by shop accidents
Essentially, you could be compensated for any injury sustained in a shop accident caused by the retailer’s negligence. Some of the most common shop accident claims relate to:
If you’ve been injured in a shop accident and believe you should be compensated, please speak to one of our advisors for free legal advice.
Can I make a shop accident claim as a retail worker?
Reasonable steps should be taken by shop owners to try and keep their staff as safe as possible. Failure to do so could lead to a shop accident claim if a member of staff is injured as a result.
You could be entitled to compensation for injuries sustained as a retail worker in a shop accident if they were caused by:
- Insufficient training.
- A lack of security i.e. if you were assaulted at work by a customer whilst working alone.
- Inadequate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) such as protective gloves while using chemicals for cleaning.
- Broken or poorly maintained equipment.
- Tiredness because you’d worked too many hours without a break.
- A manual handling injury from being asked to manually move stock that was too heavy for you.
- Stock falling on you in the warehouse because it had been stacked too high.
- Carrying out the same task for prolonged periods leading to Reptitive Strain Injuries (RSI).
Our team can check if you might be entitled to compensation for an accident in a shop so contact us for a free consultation.
Will I lose my job if I claim for my injuries?
In the current climate, it’s understandable that you might be concerned about losing your job if you sue your employer for your injuries. However, by law, you cannot be disciplined for making an honest compensation claim.
That means that if you’re injured whilst working in a shop, you cannot be fired, picked on, demoted, have pay docked or face any similar action because of your claim.
If you work with one of our solicitors, they’ll handle your claim for you so you won’t have to deal with the shop owners directly.
Claim I claim compensation for a child injured in a shop?
Unfortunately, there have been some high-profile cases where children have been injured in shops in recent years including fatalities. While those cases are extreme, any type of shop accident involving a child could entitle them to compensation.
Although children can’t make a claim themselves, a parent or responsible adult could manage the claims process for them as their litigation friend. Our solicitors can help with this process and, once approved, you’ll be able to handle everything on your child’s behalf.
After any compensation settlement has been approved, it will be placed in a court account until the child turns 18. Funds can be released before that date if the litigation friend explains how they’ll benefit the child.
How much compensation for a shop accident claim?
When claiming compensation for injuries in a shop accident, your personal injury lawyer will have to justify the settlement you’re asking for. However, where relevant it could include damages to cover:
- Physical pain and suffering.
- Psychiatric damage (distress, depression, anxiety etc).
- Loss of amenity – the impact your injuries have on your usual hobbies and activities.
- Loss of earnings.
- Replacement property costs (to cover items damaged in your accident).
- Medical expenses.
- Care costs.
- Travel expenses.
- Future earnings losses (for longer-term injuries).
- Changes to your house to improve your quality of life if you’re permanently disabled.
As part of the shop accident claims process, you will need to be assessed medically by an independent specialist. Your solicitor will usually arrange a local appointment where you’ll discuss the impact of your injuries after the specialist has examined you. Their report will set out how you’ve suffered and if you’ll suffer in the future. Your solicitor will use the report to try and justify the compensation you claim.
Providing proof for a shop accident claim
If you are unfortunate enough to have been injured in an accident in a shop, there are some steps that you could take that may be useful later on if you decide to claim compensation. They include:
- Take photographs. Proving what caused your shop accident is an important part of the claims process. As such, if you’re able to, try to take pictures of the accident scene. It’s best to do this before the cause is removed, repaired or replaced.
- Speak to witnesses. If there were any other customers in the shop at the time of your accident, or other staff, ask them for their contact details. If needed, your solicitor may contact them for a witness statement later on.
- Report the accident. You should tell a member of staff in the shop about your accident. They are legally obliged to record it in the shop’s accident report book. Your copy of the report could be used to support your claim.
- Go to A&E. It is important to get your injuries checked by a medical professional rather than relying on first aid in the shop. This will allow for a proper diagnosis and treatment of your injuries. Later on, your medical records could be obtained to prove how you’ve suffered.
- Request CCTV footage. Most shops have security cameras these days. Legally, you can request a copy of any relevant footage of your accident. However, as most shops wipe data after a month, you should act as quickly as possible.
- Keep a diary. As you’ll be asked for a statement by your solicitor, it’s a good idea to write down as much as possible. Initially, write down how the accident in the shop happened (including the time, date and location). Then keep track of any expenses your injuries cause, any days off work and any of your normal activities that are affected by your injuries.
If your shop accident claim is taken on, your solicitor will help you to secure any proof needed. If you’ll already manage to obtain any of the above, please let us know when you get in touch.
Shop accident claim time limits
You may already know that there is a 3-year time limit for personal injury claims in the UK. For shop accidents, the limitation period will usually begin from the date of your accident.
If you’re claiming on behalf of a child, their time limit for claiming doesn’t start until their 18th birthday. As a result, you could seek compensation for them at any point before that date.
In some cases, the shop owner may agree to pay interim payments to cover medical costs or loss of earnings while your claim is being processed. For these reasons, it’s usually better to begin your shop accident claim sooner rather than later. This will also make it easier for your solicitor to gather supporting proof.
Do shop accident claims go to court?
As our solicitors only take on claims with a reasonable chance of success, it’s our experience that very few shop accident claims require court intervention. Generally, your solicitor will try to resolve the claim amicably with the shop owner’s insurers.
This will usually save time and avoid costly court action. However, if your solicitor believes a settlement offer is simply too low or the shop owner doesn’t have the proof to show why they don’t accept liability for your injuries, a court hearing may be scheduled as a last resort.
No Win, No Fee claims
As many people worry about the cost of hiring a solicitor, ours provide a No Win, No Fee service for any shop accident claim they take on. That means that you don’t need to pay their legal fees in advance and you won’t pay them if the claim fails.
At the start of your claim, your solicitor will send a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA) to you. Once you’ve signed this contract, your solicitor’s main aims will be to:
- Write to the shop or their insurers to inform them of the claim.
- Begin gathering proof and arrange a medical assessment.
- Manage all communication so you won’t face any legal or medical questions directly.
- Negotiate on your behalf and try to counter any objections raised.
- Try to secure a fair amount of compensation that covers all of your suffering.
If you go on to receive compensation, a success fee of up to 25% (legally capped) will be deducted to cover your solicitor’s work. You don’t pay this if the claim is lost.
Please get in touch to see if you could claim for a shop accident on a No Win, No Fee basis.
Start a shop accident claim today
We’re ready to help if you’re thinking of claiming for injuries sustained in a shop. If you call us on 0800 652 1345, your claim will be assessed for free and we’ll explain your options.
If the claim is taken on by one of our solicitors, you won’t be asked to pay their legal fees unless compensation is paid. That usually makes the claims process much less stressful.
Our live chat team is available if you’ve got any more questions about shop accident claims so please get in touch.