Is it possible to claim compensation for being injured operating heavy machinery at work to cover loss of income?

Eoin P. Campbell, LL.B., Solicitor

Editor in Chief

Eoin P. Campbell

Claims for compensation for being injured operating heavy machinery at work generally encompass a variety of factors and any reimbursement for financial expenses – including loss of earnings – will be dealt separately under “special damages”.

Compensation for your pain and suffering, loss of amenity, loss of opportunity and the affect your injury has had on your quality of life will all be calculated under “general damages”. The Injuries Board Ireland will refer to the Book of Quantum to reach the compensation figure for your general damages – although they will not include loss of opportunity of detriment to your quality of life into their calculations. Therefore, you will need assistance from a personal injury solicitor in order to guarantee that you receive your full entitlement to general damages.

The aspect of a claim for injury from operating heavy machinery at work that you have pinpointed – your loss of income – would be incorporated in special damages which cover all financial expenses, both those incurred already and future expenses such as for on-going medical care. Special damages will be incorporated in your workplace heavy machinery injury compensation assessment by the Injuries Board provided that each financial loss is detailed individually and supported with sufficient documentation. Medical treatment expenses and other costs should be reinforced by invoices, receipts or credit card/bank statements.

You should be aware that strict penalties exist for overstating injuries or falsifying costs or expenses; therefore, it is recommended that you seek confirmation from a personal injury solicitor if you have any doubts or uncertainties whether an expense or cost can be justifiably claimed as compensation for being injured operating heavy machinery at work.

You may claim loss of income for the duration of time that you have spent away from work, and also for any lost overtime. Your loss of income must be supported by payslips submitted with the application for assessment of your claim for injury from operating heavy machinery at work to the Injuries Board. Your loss of income should be portrayed as a single figure for your net loss, which should include your basic salary along with your average earnings from overtime.

Since your payslips need to substantiate your workplace heavy machinery injury compensation claim, you will only be able to claim for the basic pay and overtime which you have earned steadily over the months prior to the accident. If there was an opportunity to earn overtime and you have previously not worked extra hours, you would not be able to claim for that loss of opportunity unless it had been agreed and accepted beforehand by your employer.

It is essential that your eligibility to claim compensation for being injured operating heavy machinery at work is confirmed by a personal injury claims solicitor, that every aspect of your claim is satisfactorily communicated on the application for assessment to the Injuries Board, and that it includes the relevant supporting documents. Engaging a solicitor would help in maximising the probability of success and of recovering compensation for your injury quickly.