Electric Shock Claims
Electric shocks can cause significant physical and psychological damage. In some cases, electric shocks can even be fatal, with around 25 people dying of electric shock injuries in the UK each year.
Most electric shocks are caused by faulty equipment, faulty workmanship by electricians and other professionals, or people taking on electrical work without the appropriate skills or training.
If somebody else was at fault for causing your electric shock, you might be legally entitled to claim compensation for your pain, suffering and financial losses.
To find out if you can make an electric shock compensation claim, you can speak to a friendly legal adviser by calling 0800 678 1410. Or, if you would prefer to receive a call back, you can arrange this by entering your details into our online claim form.
The following guide provides information for anybody who has suffered an electric shock due to somebody else’s negligence. We will explore some of the most common causes of electrical shocks, explain the process of making a claim and answer some of the most common questions.
Can I claim compensation for an electric shock?
The quickest and easiest way to find out if you can make an electric shock injury claim is to speak to a legal adviser. They will ask you some questions about when, where and how you suffered an electric shock and the injuries you sustained as a result.
The primary information that will need to be established is:
- did your accident happen within the last three years?
- was somebody else to blame for the electric shock?
- did that person owe you a duty of care?
- did you sustain an injury or injuries as a result of the accident?
If the answer to each of the above questions is yes, you should be eligible to make an electric shock claim against the person or company responsible.
What are the symptoms of an electric shock injury?
Electric shocks can vary in strength, and so the symptoms that are suffered by a victim will also vary in severity. Even low electricity volts can cause an injury to a person, with 50 volts still capable of causing damage to the brain and muscles.
Personal injury solicitors have successfully secured compensation for many electric shock victims, and some of the most common symptoms that are presented include:
- Burns and skin damage
- Muscle spasms, either temporary or ongoing
- Breathing complications
- Nerve damage
- Speech impairment
- Heart problems including irregular heartbeat and heart attacks
- Bone damage, including fractures and breaks caused by severe muscle spasms
- Injuries caused by the electric shock throwing the victim into another object or onto the ground.
In the most serious cases, the electric shock can be fatal, which is referred to as electrocution.
As well as the physical symptoms that are presented, many victims can also suffer from psychological or emotional injuries as a result of an electric shock. Whether the shock has caused anxiety, confidence issues, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) or emotional stresses brought on by the inability to work or perform daily tasks because of the shock injury, the psychological impact can be significant.
When making an electric shock claim, your personal injury solicitor will evaluate all of your physical and psychological injuries to ensure you receive the maximum amount of compensation you are entitled to.
How can it be proven that somebody else was liable?
It is unreasonable for anybody to suffer physical or emotional damage following an electric shock that was caused by somebody else’s negligence. So compensation can be claimed for a number of causes.
Your solicitor’s job is to demonstrate who was liable for your injuries and make them accountable for breaching the duty of care they owed you.
Some of the most common environments in which electric shocks happen because of the fault of another person include:
- The workplace
- The home
- Public places and spaces
- On holiday
In each of the above settings, a person or company will be legally responsible for ensuring the environment is free from avoidable risk and potential injury.
If this legal duty is breached, resulting in an electric shock, you should be able to claim personal injury compensation for your pain and any financial losses incurred as a result.
Can I claim for electric shocks in the workplace?
There are many potential causes for electric shocks in a work environment, and employers are legally required to follow the guidelines set out in the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.
The legislation requires an employer to carry out regular risk assessments, make provisions for any dangers found, and any worker who is at risk of suffering from electric shocks should be provided with suitable Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) by their employer.
Some of the most at-risk jobs for electric shocks include:
- Office workers
- Theatre production staff
- Construction workers
- Catering and kitchen staff
Whatever line of work you are in, if you suffer an electric shock at work and believe your employer was at fault, you might be able to claim injury compensation.
All employers are legally required to have Employers Liability Insurance to protect them and their employees in the event of accidents. So if you make a successful work accident claim for an electric shock, it is your employer’s insurance company that would pay out your compensation.
Electric shocks in the home
Faulty products can cause electric shocks in the home. If you were using the equipment as advised, but an error in the product caused the shock, you might be eligible to claim against the manufacturer.
Some of the most common causes of home electric shocks include:
- Faulty kitchen equipment such as kettles and toasters
- Faulty computers, TV sets and charging cables
- Defects in large appliances such as washing machines and tumble dryers
- Malfunctioning personal care products, including hairdryers and electric razors.
Further risks can be caused by faulty maintenance work to the property. For example, if you hire an electrician or builder to work on your home and they fail to observe health and safety requirements, you could end up suffering an electric shock due to shoddy workmanship.
Errors in electrical wiring can cause serious and sometimes fatal injuries, and the electrical engineer can be held accountable for their dangerous and negligent work.
Can I claim for an electric shock on holiday?
Poor maintenance and substandard electrical wiring can cause severe electric shocks to people whilst on holiday. Hotels have a legal duty of care to provide a safe environment for all of their guests.
If you booked your holiday as a package deal with an ATOL registered company, you could be eligible to make an electric shock injury compensation claim under the Package Travel Regulations 1992.
Even if you booked a holiday direct with a hotel in a different country, you might still be eligible to make a holiday accident claim if you suffered an electrical shock on the premises.
It is best to speak to an experienced injury lawyer ASAP in these circumstances, as the rules and regulations for accident claims will vary from country to country.
For example, under UK law you generally have three years from the date of the accident to make an injury claim. Whereas for accidents that happen in other countries, the time limit to make a claim can be much shorter.
Can I claim for an electric shock in a shop or supermarket?
Owners of any public space such as a supermarket, shopping centre, leisure facility, entertainment venue, or public toilets have a legal obligation to provide visitors with a safe and risk-free environment.
If you have suffered an electric shock because of a fault in equipment, building construction or facilities in a public space, you should be eligible to make a claim for compensation.
The owners of these spaces are legally required to hold public liability insurance, which ensures that they are covered in the event of anybody suffering an illness, injury or other loss on their premises.
How much compensation can I get for an electric shock claim?
The amount of compensation that is awarded to you will depend upon the severity of your symptoms and any long lasting impact that the electric shock injury is likely to have on your life. In determining the severity of the shock, the following will be considered:
- The physical damage caused by the electric shock
- The emotional impact of the shock
- Loss of earnings – both current and potential future impacts
- Cost of required treatment and recovery plans
- The need for any specialist equipment or property modifications required due to your injuries
- Travel costs to hospital, doctors or other medical appointments
Your solicitor will take great care to fully understand the impact that the electric shock has had on your life. This information will then be used to help them negotiate the highest possible compensation award that takes into account your injuries and financial losses.
Can an electric shock claim be made on a no win no fee basis?
Absolutely. All of the solicitors we work with are able to offer a no win no fee service. This means there are no upfront fees to worry about, and if your solicitor is unable to win your electric shock claim, you won’t pay them a penny.
Your solicitor only receives payment if your claim is successful. This would be a percentage of the compensation awarded, up to a maximum of 25%.
What is the time limit for making an electric shock injury claim?
Whether you have suffered an electric shock at work, in a supermarket or due to a faulty product in your home, you must make your claim within three years of the accident date.
Failing to claim within the three year time limit may invalidate your claim under the Limitation Act 1980, so it is vital to speak to a solicitor as soon as possible if you want to make an injury claim.
There are a few exceptions to the three year limitation period, which includes the following:
- If you suffered an electric shock when you were a child, the time limit doesn’t begin until your 18th birthday. This gives you until you turn 21 to make your claim.
- The three year time limit could begin when you are made aware of your injury or illness. This could be the case if an electric shock caused internal injuries that were not diagnosed at the time of the initial accident.
- If you sustained an injury from an electric shock while on holiday or working abroad, the limitation period may depend on the country where the accident took place.
To find out if you have a valid electric shock claim and are within the relevant limitation period, call 0800 678 1410 to speak to an experienced legal adviser. Alternatively, please enter your details into our online claim form to receive a call back.
You will receive a free consultation with no obligation to proceed. If you have a valid claim and want to explore your options further, you will be connected with a personal injury solicitor who works on a no win no fee basis.