Most of us will experience a burn at some point in our lives. They can be very painful, and may be anything from mild and superficial to extensive burns that are deep in nature and potentially cover a large area of the body. Third-degree burns are the most serious, while first-degree burns can usually be safely treated at home. Burns are classified according to the damage done to the skin, and how deep the damage is. Thus, you will have either first-, second-, or third-degree burns.
Understanding the differences between first-, second- and third-degree burns
The symptoms of the burn will depend on the type of burn experienced. All burns are caused by contact with a dry heat; anything that is wet will lead to a scald rather than a burn. The following symptoms may be experienced and seen if someone is burned:
- The skin may be red and the outer layer may peel – indicative of first-degree burns
- Blisters may develop – this is more likely to indicate second-degree burns
- The area around the burn may swell, indicating damage to the skin
- The skin may take on a white or charred appearance – indicative of the more serious third-degree burns
The NHS website also reveals essential know-how for treating burns, which will help you if you ever find yourself in the position of being burned, or if someone else experiences a burn. Providing the right first aid treatment will ensure the recovery is as good as it can possibly be.
How can you tell whether you could claim compensation for burns?
Burns occur in lots of ways. Indeed, there are many things that have the potential to cause a burn, such as:
- A hot object
Any of these things can result in someone suffering from a burn, as you may already know. Now, sometimes we are to blame for being burned. For example, if you opened the oven to take out a hot tray and you didn’t pay proper attention, you could accidentally catch your arm on the side of the oven and suffer a nasty burn. There are other ways we might also be injured, such as by neglecting to wear personal protective equipment at work, if we are required to wear it, and have been supplied it by our employer.
Thus, we must work out whether someone else was responsible for the circumstances that led to the burn. If you needed personal protective equipment to protect you against burns from hot machinery, or chemicals, or electricity, for example, and you were not given anything, this may mean your employer has been negligent. This might mean you did not have gloves that were adequate to protect from chemical splashes, or a mask to protect your face from a heat source.
The rule of thumb is always to seek legal advice about your situation, as no two people will experience the same thing in the same situation. The more you know, and the more you can share with a personal injury lawyer, the easier it will be to determine whether there is a chance of claiming for third-degree burns, or indeed any other burns you have suffered.
Do remember to contact a lawyer within three years of your accident, however, as this is the usual time limit applied to making claims.
How much might you be awarded in compensation for burns?
This will depend on the severity of your burns, so third-degree burns would typically receive more compensation than first-degree burns, which are much less serious. However, other factors will also come into play.
For example, how much medical treatment did you have? People with third-degree burns may require skin grafts, for example, and in severe cases, amputation of severely burned fingers or other extremities may be necessary. However, first-degree burns will respond well to topical treatments and ointments that will be applied to the skin. Thus, many factors will be considered when assessing any likely compensation that could potentially be awarded.
Another key factor is where on the body you were burned. Furthermore, the outcome will be considered. For example, if your hand was seriously burned, you may lose the use of it to some extent, and this will be evaluated when calculating compensation. While first aid for burns can help ensure the best outcome is achieved, it can only go so far to helping treat burns.
Seek advice on claiming compensation today, with our help
As you can see, getting the first first-aid treatment for burns and knowing what to do is only the beginning. Later, you may think back to how your burns happened, and you may want to know whether you could claim any compensation for what happened to you.
If this is the reason why you have arrived on this page to begin with, you should call our team of advisors now to find out whether your suspicions are correct, and you could indeed make a claim for burns compensation. Suffering through this experience is never pleasant, particularly if you have sustained third-degree burns. Make sure you know whether you could put in a no-win, no-fee* claim by calling us now on 0800 689 0500. This number will put you through to Accident Advice Helpline, so you can benefit from our experience, gained over more than 16 years of helping people just like you. You can also call on your mobile on 0333 500 0993 if it suits you better.
Compensation could help you recover from your injuries without worrying about any financial concerns. If you can no longer work because of your injuries, this will be considered when assessing your compensation award, if the case is found in your favour. If you want more immediate answers, you can always begin by completing our online form, which takes a mere 30 seconds to do. Isn’t it time you found out whether you are in a position to make a no-win, no-fee* claim with the assistance of our lawyers?
Date Published: February 18, 2014
Author: David Brown
Category: Burn injury claims