My manager told me that I am unlikely to be able to claim factory slip compensation as I did not seek medical treatment for a week. I have now been diagnosed with whiplash injuries and need to recover loss of earnings. Is it still this possible?

Eoin P. Campbell, LL.B., Solicitor

Editor in Chief

Eoin P. Campbell

Question:

My manager told me that I am unlikely to be able to claim factory slip injury compensation as I did not seek medical treatment for a week. I have now been diagnosed with whiplash injuries and need to recover loss of earnings. Is it still this possible?

Answer:

In order to claim factory slip injury compensation you must have sought medical attention for your injuries. A doctor must have performed an examination and assessed any physical (and psychological) damage caused by an accident in the workplace. Only by obtaining an accurate diagnosis can the correct treatment be prescribed, and prompt medical attention will ensure it has the maximum effect and that injuries do not deteriorate. A factory slip injury compensation claim will rely on medical records as proof of injury.

Although delaying seeking medical attention should not prevent you from making a claim for factory slip injury compensation, it can affect the chances of making a successful factory slip injury compensation claim. The defence may use the delay in seeking medical treatment in an attempt to discredit your claim for factory slip injury compensation. It is likely that the respondent will certainly seek a reduction in the level of compensation due to your ‘contributory negligence’, and that the severity of your injuries has increased by you delaying seeking medical attention.

However, it is not unusual for whiplash injuries symptoms to take some time to develop. Stiffness in the neck and shoulders is often ignored only for more serious symptoms and pain to develop a few days after an accident. Accident victims often believe they have not sustained any injury in a slip and fall, only to suffer serious headaches, neck pain and other whiplash symptoms many days after an accident. Unfortunately during the intervening time it is likely that further damage is being caused to the soft tissues in the neck and shoulders. This can increase the severity of the symptoms and can delay the recovery period significantly. It is for this reason that a reduction in compensation is usually sought.

If you have not already done so, you must ensure that the accident and details of your injuries are recorded in your employer’s accident book. This procedure must be completed as soon as possible so as not to place a claim for factory slip injury compensation in further jeopardy.

It should still be possible to make a successful claim for factory accident injury compensation; however we strongly recommend that you to speak with a personal injury solicitor as a matter of urgency for specific legal advice on your claim. You will also be advised of the likelihood of successfully recovering compensation for your factory slip and will find out the steps you must take next in order to initiate a claim for slip injury compensation against your employer.