If you have been injured at work, you may be wondering, “Who do I claim against for an injury caused by another employee?” According to the principle of vicarious liability, employers are responsible for an employee’s negligent act that causes a co-worker to sustain injuries whilst at work. In this instance. The word “act” defines the activities that employees must perform in order to carry out their duties. An employer will be held liable for a work-related injury if the employee responsible has been carrying out authorised tasks in a manner unauthorised by his or her supervisor.
According to current UK law, employers are responsible for providing:
- Safe equipment and machinery – All tools, machines and equipment must be safe to use and appropriate for the task for which they are intended. To ensure this, your employer must appoint someone to carry out a periodic check of all tools, machines and equipment. Regular inspection and maintenance are obligatory to guarantee workers’ safety. If specific tools, machines or pieces of equipment do not function correctly or are inappropriate for completing certain tasks, you can hold your employer responsible if he or she was informed about particular issues, but did nothing to prevent your injury from occurring.
- Competent staff – Your employer is directly responsible for the negligent conduct of his or her employees. If you are injured as a result of a co-worker’s negligence, you can bring a claim for compensation against your employer. The only exception may be in cases where your injury stems from a physical assault by one of your colleagues. In such situations your employer may try to prove that the assailant’s conduct was actually outside the scope of the employment and deny liability; however, the law requires employers to take reasonable care when recruiting staff. Based on The Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974, employers must ensure that the staff they consider hiring are not only competent, but also able to integrate into an existing team.
- Safe systems of work – Employers must develop safe systems of work, which should include appropriate layouts, sequences in which work should be done, warnings, notices and so on. If you have been injured because your employer has failed to provide any of these, you have a valid claim for compensation.
- A safe work environment – Although providing a safe work environment overlaps with the aforementioned points, your employer’s duty to make the workplace safe also includes developing specific health and safety policies and procedures, which are essential to minimise the risks existing in your workplace.
Our team of personal injury solicitors at Accident Advice Helpline are ready to help ensure you receive compensation for an injury caused by another employee. We can assist you in filling out the necessary paperwork, gathering evidence and filing a claim against your employer. Additionally, our experts will be happy to answer any questions you may have and talk you through the entire legal process. Remember, if you have suffered as the result of the actions of a work colleague and are looking for a definitive answer to the question, “Who do I claim against for an injury caused by another employee?” call us now on 0800 689 0500.
Date Published: January 1, 2014
Author: David Brown