I hurt my back when lifting heavy boxes at work and wanted to know if I can claim against my boss for slipped disk compensation.

Eoin P. Campbell, LL.B., Solicitor

Editor in Chief

Eoin P. Campbell

Provided that it can be proven that your employer breached the duty of care he is obliged to provide you with under the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act, and where your injury was caused by your employer’s negligence, you will be able to pursue a slipped disk compensation claim.

Your health should be your first priority and you should have had your injury examined by a medical practitioner as soon as possible after the accident occurred. Slipped disks are serious injuries that could be made worse without immediate treatment but aside from this, any significant gap between the date the accident occurred and the date your injury was noted in your medical records could potentially reduce the amount of compensation you are entitled to.

To support your slipped disk compensation claim, you should have collected the details of any witness to the accident. You should also have had your injury noted in the business’s “Accident Report Book”. For further support, if needed and if available, you should have accessed the images recorded on the CCTV.

Even if you did not carry out these procedures you may still be eligible for slipped disk compensation and you would be well advised to engage with a solicitor as soon after being treated medically as possible. Your solicitor would be able to advise you on the best way to handle a claim involving your employer as most employees in your situation would appreciate a swift and straightforward claims process with minimal risk of conflict.

In the event that your employer admits liability and his or her insurance company approaches you with an early offer of slipped disk compensation, your solicitor would be able to determine whether it is a fair and reasonable amount that reflects your injury and the impact it has had on your life. Offers such as this rarely accommodate the issue of “loss of amenity”, i.e. any detriment to your quality of life, and once you accept an offer from the negligent party’s insurers, you can never return to ask for more.