I want to claim compensation for work related ailment. I reported wrist pain in my employer’s Accident book and asked to have my workstation changed on numerous occasions. Nothing has been done and the pain is now so bad I cannot work. What is the next step?

Eoin P. Campbell, LL.B., Solicitor

Editor in Chief

Eoin P. Campbell

Claiming compensation for a work related ailment is your legal right if you have sustained an injury in the workplace which was not your fault. If that injury was caused as a result of your employer´s lack of care, then a claim for a work related ailment will have a strong likelihood of being successful. In the case of repetitive strain injuries, claiming compensation for a work related ailment is possible. However certain criteria must first be met in order for a claim for a work related ailment to be made against an employer’s liability insurance policy.

First and foremost, before you contact a solicitor about claiming compensation for a work related ailment, you must visit a doctor and have your injury properly assessed. Your health should be your primary concern and it is important that you get a proper diagnosis of your condition and to make sure that treatment is started promptly. You must also establish that your injury is associated with your employment due to your employer´s failure in a duty of care to prevent you being injured at work.

Part of the process of claiming compensation for a work related ailment involves reporting your injury to your employer. You appear to have done this by making a report in your employer’s accident book. This action serves as an official notification to your employer that you have sustained an injury and it gives your employer the opportunity to investigate and make changes to your workstation or job as appropriate. Since you have reported your wrist injury to your employer, he or she is obliged to take action.

Provision of a keyboard wrist support or padded mouse mat may be appropriate if you are required to use a computer for extended periods. Rotation of work duties may even be called for in order to ease the strain on your wrists. Your workstation must also be suitable for the work you are required to perform, and must be ergonomically designed to prevent the risk of a work related ailment developing. Your employer may even be required to schedule additional breaks to ensure that the strain on your wrists is reduced.

If the design of your workstation was substandard and was main cause of your injury this is employer negligence. A failure to take any action following an injury being sustained can be considered to be a failure in a duty of care and employer negligence by itself, and would be grounds for claiming compensation for a work related ailment.

The next step you should take is to discuss your case in detail with a personal injury solicitor. After listening to your case for compensation for a work related ailment, you will be given specific information on what you should do next. A solicitor will also assist you will filing the work related ailment claim with the Injuries Board and obtaining medical documentation that you have sustained a work related ailment. Your employer will also be notified of your work related ailment claim, and will be invited to settle. If the evidence against your employer is strong, there is a good chance that his insurance company will pay work related ailment compensation quickly.