Most work accident victims worried that a claim will affect their job

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Research has found that the majority of employees who continue to work for the same organisation after claiming for a work injury found that their relationship with their boss remained unaffected.

The survey, commissioned by National Accident Helpline, found that over four fifths (85%) of people who suffered a work injury were worried about claiming against their employer. However, over 60% of those who did claim and continued to work for the same company found that their relationship with their boss either hadn’t changed for the worse or had in fact improved.

In most cases, the impact of personal injury is long term, with 85% of victims suffering from a work injury stating that they were affected for months rather than weeks or days. Moreover, half of victims were psychologically affected by their accident. Over 41% respondents said they made a claim to ensure others didn’t have to go through the same thing, the leading reason, ahead of a desire for justice (40%) and for monetary compensation (14%).

The research found that victims of work accidents are particularly apprehensive of making a claim against their employer. In fact, not only did 85% of those who made a claim say they were worried they would be treated differently or dismissed by their employers, but 72% of people who have not claimed before revealed that this would be a concern for them too.

However, the survey found additional evidence of support from employers, with many work accident victims reporting that their claim had led to positive changes in occupational health in their workplace.

One respondent said “health and safety improved massively,” while another respondent who had fallen down a steep, twisting staircase confirmed that handrails had been added. Other respondents to the survey mentioned that new safety precautions were put in place as well as the implementation of staff training and support around health and safety.

Russell Atkinson, Managing Director of National Accident Helpline, says“Our survey also found that the leading reason for work accident victims making a claim is to ensure that no one else goes through the same ordeal they did. Many employers understand this and it’s good to see that they are supportive and sympathetic towards work accident victims.

“The statistics highlight an interesting point – we often paint our bosses in a bad light when in reality many employers are actually understanding. They want to ensure that they aren’t further compromising their duty of care by implementing safety features to help prevent the accident happening to another individual.”

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