If you have been the victim of an injury through unsafe products, you may qualify to make a compensation claim within three years of receiving this injury. Naturally, it helps to know who to claim against.
Who has liability for faulty equipment?
In many cases of accidents at work and in the home occurring as a result of faulty equipment, the first port of call is the retailer of the product in question. Retailers are legally responsible for the safety of the products they sell and can subsequently be claimed against if products fail or cause injuries and/ or damage to property.
As a rule, retailers will require evidence of the injury/ damaged caused. They may also request to inspect the product in question and existing damages/ injuries. Their examination of the case may result in positive action to put things right and compensate you, or they may respond by refusing to accept that the product was faulty or that they are responsible.
In the latter case, the next step may need to be to lodge a claim against the product’s manufacturer. This may also be necessary if the product in question was not purchased by you or if the trader is no longer operating. Again, evidence of the injury/ damage caused will need to be provided.
Responsibility for work induced injury
If injuries incurred through faulty equipment at work, it is also possible for the employer being at fault. Bound by health and safety regulations to regularly inspect and maintain equipment to ensure the safety of workers, employers may be held liable if they have failed to maintain equipment in the correct manner. Responsibility for workplace accidents may, for instance, be placed onto employers in repetitive strain injury claims.
Injuries caused by equipment that has not been adequately maintained may also result in falls, accidents involving moving machinery, vehicles, and so on. Some injuries may not be instant, but develop over prolonged periods of time. Machinery involving a great deal of vibration may, for instance, result in workers developing a condition called Hand-Arm Vibration Syndrome, or Vibration White Finger.
For this reason, employers are required by law to regularly provide relevant health checks for operators, as well as taking necessary steps to keep vibrations at a minimum. Failure to provide such checks on a regular basis and/ or ensuring vibrations are not excessive leaves employers liable to pay compensation to affected workers.
Advice on work related injuries
Calling Accident Advice Helpline will assist in determining your eligibility for a claim and establishing liability. Available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, AAH free-phone number allows you to discuss your situation with helpful, friendly advisers in confidence with no obligation to go ahead with a claim.
Date Published: September 24, 2013
Author: David Brown