Can I Claim For An Accident At Work When Self-Employed?

If you have had an accident at work when self-employed, you may be able to make a personal injury claim. Self-employed people can sometimes carry out roles in other workplaces. For example, if you are a self-employed plasterer, you could be hired to work on a construction site.

Accident at work when self-employed

Accident at work when self-employed claims guide

You may have questions such as: 

  • Can I make an accident at work claim?
  • How much compensation for an accident at work may I get? 
  • How long do I have to claim after being injured at work?

This guide will touch upon all of these topics, as well as looking at the evidence you could provide to support your case. Furthermore, we will address the benefits that can be offered by a No Win No Fee agreement with a solicitor. 

If you would prefer to speak to one of our advisors, you can do so. They are available to offer free legal advice 24/7. You can:

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Choose A Section

  1. What Happens If I Have An Accident At Work When Self-Employed?
  2. Accidents That Could Happen To Self-Employed Workers
  3. What Evidence Could Support An Accident At Work Claim?
  4. Estimating Compensation For An Accident At Work When Self-Employed
  5. Are No Win No Fee Claims Recommended For The Self-Employed?
  6. Extra Details About Claiming For An Accident At Work When Self-Employed

What Happens If I Have An Accident At Work When Self-Employed?

All employers in Britain owe their employees a duty of care under the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974. This piece of legislation states that they need to take reasonable steps to ensure the safety of their employers. This also includes self-employed individuals who are contracted to work for them.

You cannot claim compensation for an accident at work that was not caused by employer negligence. For example, you may have wholly caused the accident yourself, or it could have occurred despite the duty of care being fulfilled; in these cases, you’d be unable to claim.

You may be wondering how long you have to make a claim. Generally, you have 3 years from the date of the accident or from when you found out that your injuries were caused by negligence to make a claim. There are some cases where exceptions to this time limit apply. 

For example, if the claimant was under the age of 18 when the accident happened or lacks the mental capacity to make a claim, then the time limit is suspended. A litigation friend can claim on behalf of someone who can’t pursue their own case. The time limit to claim begins again in the event that the extenuating circumstances that prevented someone from being able to claim no longer apply, provided no claim has been made. 

If you have been involved in an accident at work when self-employed and would like to find out whether you have a valid claim, please get in touch. 

Most Common Work Accidents

The Health and Safety Executive is Britain’s regulatory body for safety in the workplace. According to their health and safety statistics, 51,211 non-fatal injuries to employees were reported under the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013 (RIDDOR) in 2020/21.

There were 142 fatal accidents reported in this time period. 88 of these were to employees, and 54 to self-employed workers. The most common kind of fatal accident to self-employed workers was falls from a height, with 16 instances.

Accidents That Could Happen To Self-Employed Workers

As we have already mentioned, employers owe a duty of care; this duty extends to self-employed workers that they contract. Employers need to do everything they reasonably can to prevent accidental injury to employees.

Below, we have included some examples of accidents that could occur as a result of a breach of duty of care: 

  • You could slip on a wet floor that did not have a wet floor sign after mopping. This could cause a hip fracture and bruising. 
  • You may not have been trained in the correct manual handling techniques you need to move a load safely. Because of this, you sustain a back injury when undertaking a task. 
  • The employer fails to provide you with the personal protective equipment (PPE) that you need to do your job safely. Because of the lack of a helmet on a building site, you sustain a head injury. 

This is not an exhaustive list of the ways that a breach of duty could cause injury in the workplace. Please speak with an advisor for a free assessment of the value of your claim.

What Evidence Could Support An Accident At Work Claim?

It is advisable to gather as much evidence as possible when looking to make a personal injury claim after an accident at work. This will strengthen your claim for workplace accident compensation.

After an accident in which you’re injured, you should seek medical attention. This will allow you to be treated for the injuries you suffer; it also generates medical records that can later be used as evidence. 

You could also: 

  • Make note of witnesses’ contact details who are willing to provide a statement
  • Gather any CCTV footage that shows the incident take place 
  • Take pictures of the scene of the incident as well as your injuries 
  • Fill out the accident at work book- it’s a legal requirement for an organisation with 10 or more employees 

We recommend that you seek legal advice. As previously stated, our team of advisors are available 24/7 to offer free legal advice. If you have an eligible claim, they might connect you with a solicitor from our panel who can help you make a self-employed work accident claim.

Estimating Compensation For An Accident At Work When Self-Employed

Self-employed work accident compensation could be made up of general damages and special damages. These are two separate heads of claim that look to compensate you for the different ways in which your injuries has impacted you. 

General damages seek to compensate you for any pain and suffering, either physically or mentally, that you’ve sustained as a result of your injuries. 

We have compiled a table using compensation amounts from the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG). The JCG is a legal document that legal professionals use to aid them when valuing claims. 

You should only use these figures as guidance. This is because each accident at work claim is different. Therefore, the compensation you could receive after being injured at work could differ.

Body PartSeverity Compensation BracketDetails
HeadModerate (ii) £90,720 to £150,110Moderate to modest intellectual impact leading to the capacity to work being significantly lowered.
HeadMinor£2,210 to £12,770If there is any brain damage suffered, it will be minimal.
BackSevere (ii)£74,160 to £88,430Nerve root damage that results in damage associated with hindered mobility, bladder and bowel problems and unsightly scarring, for example.
Shoulder Severe (ii)£61,910 to £78,400Injuries such as a fracture dislocation that leads to impotence.
Shoulder Moderate£7,890 to £12,770Symptoms such as limitation of movement or pain is present for around 2 years.
ArmPermanent and Substantial Disablement £39,170 to £59,860Severe fractures to one or both forearms where cosmetic or functional disability is sustained.
LegSevere (iii)£39,200 to £54,830Serious compound or comminuted fractures or injuries to joints, ligaments causing symptoms such as problems with mobility.
Wrist Significant Permanent Disability £24,500 to £39,170Some useful movement remains despite considerable permanent disabilities.
ElbowLess severe £15,650 to £32,010Injuries that do not result in significant disability or require major surgery but lead to impairment to function.
FootModestUp to £13,740Injuries such as ordinary metatarsal fractures that are uncomplicated, ruptures to ligament and puncture wounds.

You could also be awarded special damages. This potential head of a claim compensates for the financial impact that you’ve experienced because of the accident that left you injured.

For example, you could experience a slip or fall because of the negligence of your employer, you could break your phone as well as sustain injuries. The cost of repairing or replacing your phone could be included in your settlement under special damages.

For further guidance on the other costs that special damages could cover, speak with one of our advisors today. If you have a valid case, you could be connected with a No Win No Fee solicitor from our panel.

Are No Win No Fee Claims Recommended For The Self-Employed?

A No Win No Fee agreement allows you to access the help of a legal representative. A popular method amongst claimants is a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA). 

With this kind of agreement in place, your lawyer usually won’t ask you to pay upfront in order for them to work on your claim, and they generally won’t require payment if the claim is a success. 

However, if your accident at work claim is successful, a legally capped success fee will be deducted from your compensation. The legal cap that this success fee is subject to will mean you always receive the majority of the compensation you receive. 

Make A Self-Employed Work Accident Claim

One of our No Win No Fee solicitors can use their legal experience to cover all bases of your claim. To get in touch with one of our advisors who may be able to connect you with one,  you can: 

  • Call the number at the top of the page
  • Use the live chat 
  • Contact us online 

Extra Details About Claiming For An Accident At Work When Self-Employed

We have included some additional reading related to an accident at work claim:

We have also included some of our own guides that you might find useful: 

Thank you for reading our article on what to do if you have had an accident at work when self-employed.

Writer Beck Perch

Publisher Fern Styles