'No payout in 85% of work injuries'

Most workers who are ill or injured at work never receive a penny in compensation, according to a "myth-busting" report.

Most workers who are ill or injured at work never receive a penny in compensation, a study found
Most workers who are ill or injured at work never receive a penny in compensation, a study found

The Association of Personal Injury Lawyers said that, contrary to perceptions, not every injury at work ends up with a payout.

Group president Matthew Stockwell said: "Eighty-five per cent of people who have been injured or fallen ill simply by turning up for work don't receive a penny in compensation.

"Either these injured people are choosing not to claim, or they can't prove that their injury is due to someone else's negligence. Unfortunately, employers tend to have the upper hand, as they control the workplace and have all the information on the equipment and systems in place.

"So there will be people who have a need and a right to claim but can't, which is precisely the opposite of a so-called 'have-a-go' culture."

More than 600,000 people are reported to become ill or are injured because of their job each year, and 25,000 of those are forced to give up work, said the report, produced in conjunction with the TUC.

"Compensation serves an important purpose. Myths and misunderstandings create a smokescreen which obscures the fact that injured people need, and are entitled to, help to get back to work and put their lives back on track," added Mr Stockwell.

TUC general secretary Frances O'Grady said: "The Government is forever trying to brainwash us into thinking the UK has a rampant compensation culture, but - as this new report shows - the facts tell a very different story. Even those dying from work-related diseases have precious little chance of getting a decent payout.

"The true government motivation here is to weaken health and safety legislation and make it even harder to for victims to pursue claims against their employers. Unfortunately the end result is likely to be a much higher rate of workplace accidents, injuries and illnesses in the future."