Changes to employer’s liability for work accidents

Sam Collard
accident at work injury

Table of Contents

As it now stands employers are automatically liable for some workplace injuries, (without the Claimant having to prove “fault”) is going to change when the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Bill becomes law.

The legislation is part of the Government’s campaign to reduce/eliminate the perceived “compensation culture” and their desire to “free up business” and so encourage growth, The idea behind the new legislation is that it will ease employers’ fears of being sued and help to reduce the amount of money employers ensuring they comply with health and safety regulations

The Health and Safety at Work Act currently impose civil liability for breaches of statutory duty in relation to health and safety regulations. Sometimes this means that the employee can successfully sue even though the employer was not at fault where the terms of the regulation are absolute (e.g. regulation 5(1) of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations which provides that every employer shall ensure that work equipment is maintained in an efficient state, in efficient working order and in good repair).

The Government believe that this duty is too high and that employees should rely solely on the employer’s duty to take “reasonable care” of their safety at work

This change in the law will make it more difficult for employees to recover. It seems that in terms of protecting employee safety at work, as a society we are moving backwards rather than forwards and the recession in which we find ourselves in will mean businesses will be less likely to spend money on health and safety while employees will put up with unsafe working conditions to avoid dismissal.

The Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL) in which organisation Osbornes is actively involved in has been working steadily to oppose the changes to the law.

If you have had an accident at work either before or after the changes to the law, Osbornes will use their extensive legal expertise to ensure you obtain the maximum amount of compensation as quickly as possible!

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