Industrial deafness occurs when an employee loses his or her hearing as a result of the working environment. This usually happens over a long period of exposure and is present in a wide range of industrial environments, particularly where noisy, heavy, machinery is used.
Employers have a duty of care to their employees and where it can be proved they are liable for industrial deafness a compensation claim may be possible.
As with any other claim for compensation the victim must not have been responsible for his or her own injury or disability. It is also important to identify who the claim should be made against. As far as industrial deafness claims are concerned the employee will have to prove that he or she was not responsible for the loss of hearing, but that the fault lies with the employer.
Employers have a duty of care to their employees and standards in the workplace are subject to strict health and safety regulations. The fact that these standards have not been met may give the worker the opportunity to make a claim for hearing loss. This will involve making a claim for personal injury.
How you can make an industrial deafness claim
If you believe you are suffering deterioration in hearing because of your working environment the first step is to obtain proof. This will involve you seeing your GP, who may refer you to a hearing specialist. A report will then be made on the extent of your deafness.
When planning a claim for industrial deafness the next stage is to prove the condition was caused by your working environment. This can be done by obtaining witness statements from your work colleagues.
It will also be necessary to identify the times when you were exposed to the industrial noise that led to the deterioration of your hearing. It must be shown that your employer should have been aware of the noise levels in the workplace and that by exposing you to them was negligent.
The fact that noise levels were so high and the employer did little to protect you against them would provide grounds for making an industrial deafness claim.
Seeking assistance with an industrial deafness claim
Compensation claims are complicated and can have pitfalls for the claimant. This especially applies to industrial deafness cases. Proving the employer was liable for your injury can be difficult and your claim for compensation may be contested. Alternatively, liability may be admitted and an offer of compensation made. This offer will inevitably be far lower than you might achieve if the case were to be taken to court, which is why you should seek expert legal advice when pursuing such a claim.
Our personal injury solicitors are experienced in dealing with industrial deafness claims. We will make an assessment of your case, at no cost to you. If we believe you have a justifiable claim we will represent you on a 100% no win, no fee* basis. Put simply, this means if your case is won you receive all your compensation and if it is lost, you will not have to pay a penny for our services.
Date Published: October 1, 2013
Author: David Brown