My partner has been very ill for the past month and I believe it could be work related, what is the procedure with claims for work related sickness
As with all claims for work related sickness, your first priority should be your partner’s health, it is imperative he seeks professional medical attention without delay. That way he can have his illness diagnosed and determine if, on the balance of probabilities, it was contracted at work.
Work related sickness generally develops over a long period of time, sometimes it can take years before you become aware of your illness. This is accounted for in the UK Statute of Limitations which allows claimants three years from the ‘Date of Knowledge’, that is the date you become aware of your injury, to make a claim for compensation.
In order to successfully make a claim for work related sickness the claimant will need to demonstrate that negligence or a lack of care from their employer contributed to their illness. This could be due to a failure by the employer to provide adequate training in safety procedures, not providing safety equipment or ensuring their environment is safe to work in.
Once your partner has received medical attention and the illness has been recorded in his medical history, he should speak with a personal injury claims solicitor. They will be able to advise him on the steps he needs to take to help build the strongest case possible.
Successful claims for work related sickness require strong evidence to substantiate the claim, photographs of the workplace showing where it is a health hazard as well as testimonies of work colleagues who are also suffering from a work related sickness are useful.
It is also recommended that your partner makes a note of his illness in the employer’s ‘Accident Report Book.’ It is quite possible the employer or their insurers may make a direct offer of compensation to him for his illness and, while this should be welcomed as it shows they believe they are liable for his sickness, your partner must be wary as he risks being under compensated for his condition if he accepts an offer of compensation without consulting with his solicitor first.
Other external factors such as age, your health prior to diagnosis and the impact that the illness has had on your personal life thus far and the impact it is estimated to have in the future can affect claims for work related sickness.
It is unlikely the direct offer of compensation from the insurers will have factored in all these elements and it is important your partner is aware of this. It is recommended that your solicitor handles all correspondence with the insurance company as they will ensure your partner receives the maximum amount of compensation in the claim for work related illness that he is entitled to.