Had a fall from a ladder at work?
If you have had an accident while using a ladder or step ladder at work, you could be entitled to claim compensation for your injuries
How Much Could You Claim?

Ladder Accident Claims

Many individuals make use of ladders in their working lives, either as a daily tool for their profession (for example, electricians and decorators) or occasionally to reach items stored on high shelves. No matter how frequent the use may be, working at height for any amount of time carries the risk of potential injury.

Injuries that result from ladder accidents can range from cuts and bruises to head injuries and broken bones from falling off the ladder. According to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), ladder accidents cause an average of 14 deaths per year, contributing to falls from height being the number one cause of fatal injuries at work.

If you believe your employer was responsible for your accident, you may be eligible to make a compensation claim for your injuries and related financial losses. Call 0800 032 3660 or arrange a call back to discuss the particulars of your case during a free consultation, where an experienced legal adviser can evaluate whether you have a valid ladder accident claim.

If you are entitled to claim compensation for your ladder accident, your injury solicitor will be able to take your case on a no win no fee basis. This service removes the financial risk of making a claim, and if your solicitor cannot win your case, you will not pay them a penny.

Can I claim compensation for a ladder accident?

If you have suffered an injury or multiple injuries due to a fall from a ladder, you might wonder whether you could receive compensation for your pain and suffering. If your accident was someone else’s fault, then the answer is yes; you might be eligible to start a ladder injury claim.

To claim compensation for a ladder fall, the same criteria apply as with other workplace accidents. The requirements for a valid case include the following:

  • Did the accident happen within the last three years?
  • Was the accident caused by negligence on the part of your employer?
  • Did you sustain a personal injury as a result of this accident?

If you can answer yes to each of the above questions, you should, in most cases, be eligible to claim financial compensation for the pain, suffering and financial losses caused.

Numerous regulations are in place to ensure the safety of employees who work at height or are required to use ladders to carry out their tasks. Some of these laws state that it is essential for workers who use ladders to receive adequate training and suitable personal protective equipment (PPE).

To receive compensation, you must be able to prove that your accident was due to someone else’s negligence or failure to follow the relevant health and safety legislation. You could also make a ladder accident claim if the ladder was defective or unsuitable for its intended purpose.

It is recommended to seek the help of a personal injury solicitor to assess your case and determine if you are eligible for compensation. You can receive a free consultation with a legal adviser by calling 0800 032 3660 or entering your details to arrange a call back.

Employer responsibilities when working with ladders

Employers have several responsibilities when it comes to working with ladders. The most important legislation they should follow is the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 and the Work at Height Regulations 2005.

The Work at Height Regulations was introduced in 2005 to provide additional protection to workers that use ladders and carry out work at height. Under these regulations, an employer has a duty of care to take all reasonable steps to ensure the use of ladders by employees is as safe as possible. Some of their responsibilities include:

  • Carrying our risk assessments to identify potential hazards;
  • Providing ladders which are long enough for the task at hand so that workers do not have to overreach;
  • Providing ladders which are well maintained and suitable for the job;
  • Providing adequate training to the employees so they can carry out their tasks safely, including how to set them up, how to climb, and how to maintain balance while using a ladder;
  • Assessing risks associated with using a ladder and providing safe alternatives when required;
  • Making sure that any fragile surfaces are noted and highlighted to workers;
  • Considering weather conditions when working outside;
  • Properly plan and organise any work at height;
  • Providing free PPE when necessary, such as anti-slip footwear;
  • Regularly inspect ladders and repair or replace them if necessary;
  • Monitoring the employees to ensure that they use ladders safely and correctly.

Failure to fulfil these responsibilities could result in an employer being held liable for any injuries sustained by employees that fall from a ladder.

Common causes of accidents involving ladders at work

Many people use ladders as part of their everyday tasks in the workplace. Unfortunately, this makes falls from a ladder responsible for almost a third of all injuries at work in the UK and a leading cause of fatalities.

There are many different circumstances and potential causes of ladder accidents. Some of the most common situations include:

  • Using a ladder that is too small for the task, causing the user to overreach or stretch and lose balance;
  • Failure to regularly inspect and repair or replace faulty ladders;
  • The lack of personal protective equipment such as fall arrest equipment, bump caps or boots;
  • The presence of hazardous substances, such as dirt or spillages under the ladder, causing it to slip;
  • Using a ladder when scaffolding or lifting devices would have been more appropriate;
  • Storing the ladders improperly, such as in damp conditions, which can cause corrosion or weaken the ladder;
  • Using a weak or defective ladder that breaks during use;
  • Failure to lock the hinges of a ladder before stepping on it;
  • Using a ladder that has not been correctly erected, for example, balancing it at the wrong angle or not on a steady base;
  • Accidents caused by inadequate training on how to use a ladder properly;
  • Standing on the top step of a ladder or step ladder, which makes them unstable and more susceptible to tipping;
  • Using the ladder in unsuitable weather conditions, such as rain, snow or strong winds.

Employers are legally obliged to offer a safe working environment to their staff, which means fulfilling the responsibilities stated above. If your employer has failed in this duty of care and resulted in you being injured, you might be eligible to make a no win no fee* ladder accident claim.

The Health and Safety Executive have produced guidance on the safe use of ladders and stepladders in the workplace. This further explains the responsibilities placed on employers, including the requirement to inspect equipment before use and guidance on how and when to use them safely.

Common injuries sustained in ladder accidents

Ladders are common in many workplaces and essential for workers such as electricians and painters. However, inadequate planning and safety measures could lead to a wide range of injuries resulting from a ladder accident.

Some common types of personal injuries that may lead to a ladder injury claim include the following:

  • Fractures

A fall from a ladder could cause severe fractures to different body parts, such as the legs, arms or back. Fractures can cause significant pain, limit mobility, and require extensive medical treatment, including surgery, physical therapy, and rehabilitation. In some cases, fractures can result in long-term disabilities or chronic pain.

  • Sprains and strains

Ladder accidents can result in sprains and strains to muscles, ligaments and joints, including the back, neck, and wrist. Sprains and strains can be painful and limit your ability to perform daily activities. Treatment may include rest, physical therapy and pain management. In some cases, surgery may even be necessary.

  • Cuts and lacerations

Falls from ladders can result in contact with sharp objects or broken glass, which can cause cuts and lacerations to the skin. These injuries can be painful and result in significant bleeding. Treatment may include cleaning and closing the wound with stitches and antibiotics to prevent infection. In some cases, cuts and lacerations can result in scarring or other long-term cosmetic changes.

  • Head injuries

A fall from a ladder can result in trauma to the head, which can lead to various injuries, including concussions, skull fractures, contusions and intracranial haemorrhages. Head injuries can be severe and can result in long-term or permanent disabilities, such as memory loss, difficulty speaking, and changes in behaviour or personality.

  • Back injuries

Ladder accidents often result in some form of injury to the back, such as bruising, strains, fractures or herniated discs. Back injuries can be painful and limit your ability to move and carry out daily tasks. Severe trauma to the spinal cord can have devastating effects, such as paralysis or loss of bladder and bowel function.

  • Electrocution

Electrocution is a potentially life-threatening injury that can occur in ladder accidents, particularly when ladders are used near electrical sources. Some of the symptoms of electrocution include breathing difficulties, burns to the skin, muscle contractions and cardiac arrest. An electric shock can be fatal, usually requiring immediate medical attention.

  • Internal injuries

Ladder accidents can cause internal injuries, particularly in the event of falls from a significant height. Some of the most common types of internal injuries sustained in ladder accidents include damage to internal organs, internal bleeding and lung injuries, which can cause significant pain and difficulty breathing.

These injuries can range from minor to severe and can have long-lasting effects on an individual’s health and quality of life. Employers must take ladder safety seriously and follow appropriate procedures to prevent accidents and reduce the risk of injury. Failing to do this could make them liable for compensation in a ladder accident claim.

What evidence will I need to make a ladder accident claim?

To make a successful ladder injury claim, you will need to gather and provide evidence to show that someone else was responsible for your accident and the damages you incurred. This may include the following types of evidence:

  • Medical records: You will need to provide documentation of your medical treatment and any injuries sustained in the accident, including diagnoses, test results, prognosis and rehabilitation.
  • Witness statements: If there were witnesses to your ladder accident, you should obtain their contact information in case they need to be called upon to provide a statement.
  • Accident reports: You should file an accident report with your employer or supervisor immediately after the incident and obtain a copy of this report, which can provide important information about the circumstances of your accident.
  • Photos and videos: If you took photos or videos of the scene of the accident or your injuries, these could be helpful to support your claim. If there were any CCTV cameras in the area where you had the fall from a ladder accident, you are entitled to ask for a copy of the footage.
  • Expert witnesses: You may need to retain the services of an expert witness to provide testimony about the cause of your accident, the nature of your injuries, or other relevant issues.
  • Documentation of lost income: If you have suffered lost income or benefits as a result of your accident, you should gather documentation to support your claim, such as pay slips, bank statements or time sheets.
  • Documentation of other expenses: In a ladder accident claim, you are also entitled to ask for compensation for any other losses and expenses you incurred, such as travel expenses and care costs, so make sure to keep any relevant invoices or receipts as evidence.

Having a clear and well-documented case can be essential in helping you to receive a fair settlement for your injuries and financial losses. A solicitor can help you to gather and present the evidence necessary to support your ladder injury claim.

How much compensation can I expect if my ladder accident claim is successful?

The amount of compensation you may be able to receive in a ladder accident claim depends on several factors, including:

  • The nature and severity of your injuries
  • The amount of lost income or benefits you have suffered
  • The specific circumstances of your case
  • Any other related financial expenses
  • Whether you were partially responsible for your accident

Two types of damages may be recoverable in a ladder injury claim:

Special damages are intended to compensate for specific, out-of-pocket expenses that you have incurred as a result of the accident. Examples of special damages include:

  • Medical expenses
  • Lost wages and loss of earning capacity
  • Costs of physical therapy and rehabilitation
  • Costs of care and assistance
  • Property damage
  • Mobility aids and other medical devices
  • Adaptations to your home or vehicle to accommodate a disability

General damages, on the other hand, are intended to compensate for non-economic losses such as pain and suffering, loss of quality of life, and emotional distress. General damages are more subjective and difficult to quantify than special damages, which are based on documented expenses and other verifiable losses.

The compensation for general damages is usually awarded based on the guidelines published by the Judicial College. According to these, you might receive the following:

  • £91,090 to £160,980 for a severe back injury resulting in chronic pain and disability
  • Up to £6,700 for a minor neck injury such as a strain with recovery within 3-24 months
  • £52,120 to £69,730 for a knee injury leading to mobility issues and impaired agility
  • £10,040 to £31,220 for severe wrist injuries causing long-term pain or disability
  • £12,210 to £37,760 for a fractured skull and a related concussion
  • £219,070 to £282,010 for a severe brain injury leading to physical and cognitive disabilities

You can learn more about your compensation prospects by discussing your ladder accident claim with a professional solicitor. For a free consultation, you can call 0800 032 3660 or fill in our online claim form to receive a call back. Alternatively, you could also consult our online compensation calculator for further information about how much compensation you could be entitled to claim.

What are the benefits of using a solicitor to process my claim?

We understand that deciding to make a ladder accident claim against an employer is difficult, so your solicitor will take the time to ensure that you are fully aware of your legal rights and have knowledge of the claims process from the outset.

Here are just a few of the benefits of using a personal injury solicitor for your compensation claim:

  • A free and no-obligation consultation to assess your eligibility to claim and to answer any questions you may have;
  • A no win no fee service to ensure that you are not taking any financial risks by making a claim. If they cannot win your case, you will not pay them a penny;
  • Experienced solicitors who have worked on similar cases to ensure your claim is placed in the best possible hands;
  • Commitment to achieving the highest possible compensation award for your injuries and financial losses;
  • Your solicitor will prepare and file all the documents you need throughout the claims process so you can focus on your recovery;
  • Local, friendly solicitors available nationwide.

To discuss your case and requirements during a free assessment, call 0800 032 3660 or arrange a call back. During this call, you will be asked a few questions about your ladder accident, such as when it happened, how it happened and what injuries you have sustained as a result.

A legal adviser will then let you know if you have a valid ladder injury claim. The decision to move forward with a case is entirely up to you, and there will be no obligation or pressure to do so. You will be in control at all times.

How long will it take to process my ladder injury claim?

The time taken to bring a claim to a successful conclusion can vary from a couple of months to many years. It all depends on the particular circumstances of the case at hand. Some of the factors that can influence the duration of a case are:

  • Whether your employer accepts or is contesting their liability
  • Debates surrounding the diagnosis and severity of symptoms and losses
  • Delays in gathering relevant evidence such as medical reports, witness statements and receipts for related expenses
  • Inability to find or contact witnesses
  • Delays caused by the defendant’s legal firm
  • Whether you can settle or you have to issue court proceedings

There are several actions you could take to speed up the claims process and receive your compensation payment in a timely manner, such as:

  • Contact a no win no fee personal injury lawyer as early as possible by calling free on 0800 032 3660;
  • Take photographs of the accident scene and your injuries;
  • Document your losses and expenses in as much detail as possible from day one;
  • Get the contact details of any witnesses to your accident;
  • Fill in the required forms and legal documents without delay.

Will my job be at risk if I make a claim against my employer?

Under UK Employment Law, it is illegal for an employer to dismiss or discriminate against an employee who makes a claim against them, whether for a ladder accident or any other type of injury or illness sustained in the workplace. This protection applies regardless of whether the claim is successful or not.

Employers have a responsibility to ensure a safe working environment for their employees and provide proper training and protection. If this responsibility is not met and you sustain an injury, you can start a ladder injury claim against your employer without it affecting the employer-employee relationship.

In the UK, it is a legal requirement for employers to have Employers’ Liability insurance. This insurance covers the employer in case an employee is injured or falls ill due to work-related reasons and will cover a fall from a ladder claim. Your employer will not bear the cost of the compensation award.

Even so, you may still be hesitant to pursue compensation out of fear of retaliation. However, if you are dismissed, singled out or penalised in any other way because you have made a claim, you might be able to bring a separate claim for unfair dismissal or discrimination.

If you are concerned about making a ladder accident claim against your employer, you should speak to a legal professional who can advise you on your rights and the best course of action. For a free consultation, call 0800 032 3660 or arrange a call back with a friendly legal adviser.

* Personal injury claims are offered on a no win, no fee basis. If your claim is successful, your solicitor will receive up to 25% of your compensation as their success fee. Any additional costs, such as legal protection insurance, will be clearly explained to you by your solicitor before you decide to proceed with your claim. Termination fees may apply if you fail to cooperate with your solicitor. This includes deliberately misleading your solicitor, failing to attend scheduled medical or expert examinations, or not appearing at a required court hearing.