Employees who suffer harm/injury from violence in the course of their employment have three ways to claim compensation.

  1. Taking out a private prosecution against the perpetrator of the violence.
  2. Submitting a claim to the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA).
  3. Suing the employer

You only have one bite at the cherry!

It is not possible to make more than one application where compensation is concerned. So, don’t get rushed down the wrong road!

Considerations

Perpetrators of violence are not normally wealthy enough to be able to pay significant compensation and the CICA scheme restricts compensation awards in line with a national schedule that starts at £1000.

Examples are:

  • Paralysis of all limbs £250,000
  • Loss of an ear £10,000
  • Loss of sight in one eye £20,000
  • Dislocated jaw £2,000
  • Fractured thigh bone (with full recovery) £3,000
  • Loss of one front tooth £1,500
  • Facial scarring with serious disfigurement £7,500

Whereas, the option to sue the employer will normally offer much higher levels of compensation.

For Example: The statutory limit under the CICA scheme for multiple gang rape is £10,000, whereas a back injury caused by lifting something in an untrained way could be compensated by an award of £400,000 or more.

However, it’s worth considering that the CICA scheme is a reasonably straight forward, non-adversarial process! If you qualify, you get the award!

Whereas, suing the employer is adversarial, less straight forward and can take years to get any compensation.

Claimants have to be able to prove that the employer was liable (i.e. legally responsible AND to blame) for what happened.

Claimants also have to prove that, if appropriate measures had been implemented by their employer, the incident would have been prevented and the injury avoided.  

If the necessary grounds exist, the question will then turn to how much the employees own actions contributed towards the seriousness of the outcome.

In any case brought on grounds of employer negligence, any award will be reduced in proportion to how significantly the actions of the injured employee contributed to the severity of the outcome (e.g. failing to report concerns, continuing to operate unsafe practice, etc.)

Advice

Do all you possibly can to avoid needing to claim compensation.

Compensation is never ever worth the suffering that has to be endured in order to get it.