A colleague told me I can claim compensation for an injury by a sharp object in a factory as it was my employers fault for not giving me safety gloves. Is this correct?

Eoin P. Campbell, LL.B., Solicitor

Editor in Chief

Eoin P. Campbell

Although you have been injured by a sharp object at work, this does not necessarily mean that you are entitled to claim compensation for an injury by a sharp object in a factory. In order to claim sharp object injury compensation you must be able to establish that your injury was a direct result of negligence of your employer and that there was a failure in a duty of care. Provided you can prove that your employer has been negligent and failed in a duty of care to keep you safe at work – such as by not providing safety gloves when there was a reasonable risk of injury from a sharp object – you should be entitled to make a claim for compensation for an injury by a sharp object in a factory against your employer’s liability insurance policy.

If there was a risk of injury from sharp objects in the workplace, it may have been appropriate for your employer to have provided personal protective equipment to protect you from an injury and failure to do so may be classed as negligence. Your employer may also be deemed to have been negligent for failing to identify the risk of injury from sharp objects in the workplace in a risk assessment and for not taking action to reduce any risk of injury to the minimum practical level. These examples of negligence would give you grounds for making a claim for an injury by a sharp object in a factory.

However, a claim for an injury by a sharp object in a factory will only be possible if you visited a hospital or a doctor as soon as practical to have your injury treated. If your injury was only treated at work by a qualified first aider, a claim for compensation will not be possible. In order to justify claiming compensation for an injury by a sharp object in a factory, the injury must have been severe enough to warrant seeking treatment by a doctor. Your medical records must also detail your injuries, as they will be used to support your claim.

You should speak with a personal injury solicitor about claiming compensation for being injured by a sharp object in a factory to establish that you have a valid claim, but also to determine the level of sharp object injury compensation which is applicable for the injury you have sustained. While your injury may have been caused by the negligence of your employer, a claim for an injury by a sharp object in a factory is not cost free. You may find that it is unlikely to be worth your while to proceed with a legal claim for compensation through the Injuries Board for a minor injury, and a solicitor is in the best position to provide advice on this matter.