• Find us on:

Personal injury compensation

What is personal injury?

A personal injury is a physical injury, disease or illness, or a psychological injury or illness. A personal injury could result in death.

Examples of personal injuries are:

  • An injury at work. This includes work-related illnesses such as a disease caused by working with asbestos
  • a psychological illness caused by stress at work
  • an injury caused in a traffic accident
  • an injury received as a result of faulty goods or services
  • an injury caused if you trip over paving stones
  • a psychological illness suffered as a result of abuse as a child
  • an injury caused by errors in hospital treatment or by vaccinations
  • a physical or psychological injury sustained by a victim in the course of a crime
  • A psychological illness caused by discrimination or harassment at work

Employers have a duty to keep the workplace as safe as reasonably possible, to provide you with a safe working environment, safe working tools, machinery and equipment, and protective clothing. If your employer fails in this duty and you suffer injury or become ill as a result, you are entitled to claim compensation. Compensation can include compensation for the injury or illness itself, and any loss of earnings or other expenses such as treatment costs. Every employer is required by law to have insurance to cover such claims, known as employers’ liability insurance.

What can be done about an injury at work?

If you’ve been hurt in an accident at work that wasn’t your fault, you can make a claim for compensation. If you have been made ill because of a situation at work, or your employer has been negligent, you can make a claim for your pain and suffering, together with any losses and expenses such as loss of earnings and medical costs.

You can also make a personal injury claim if your workplace accident or injury was caused by a colleague.  Do not accept compensation from an insurance company acting for your employer without taking legal advice. You may find that you have settled for less than you are actually entitled to.

[ see Accident at work, Violence at work, How to win your personal injury claim].

Time limits

You need to start court proceedings within three years of the injury or when you knew about the illness. This time limit can vary,

  • depending on the injury
  • where it happened
  • who the claim is against.


You need to prove that your injury, illness or disease was caused as a result of the negligence of your employer.  Our solicitors will help you to compile your evidence and present it to the third party insurers.


  • Report the accident to any appropriate authority, such as the local Council, your employer, police, or the owner of any property where the accident took place.
  • Make a note of your accident in the accident book and also take names and addresses of any witnesses to the accident.
  • Take photographs to demonstrate any defect or hazard which was responsible for your accident or injury.
  • Measure the depth or height of any hazard


Compensation is different for everyone, but factors taken into consideration are;

  • The seriousness of your injury
  • Your financial loss

You can get compensation for your pain and suffering as well as not being able to do things that you could do before the accident or illness.  The compensation is based on medical evidence and specialist reports of your injuries or disease, and the current and future impact on you.

You can also be paid compensation to cover your financial loss because of the accident. The aim of this type of compensation is to put you back in a position, financially, as if the accident had never occurred. You must keep records such as receipts and invoices for your expenses connected with the accident.

Personal injury compensation can cover any loss of earnings since the accident and any future loss of earnings. Compensation can also cover adapting your home or car, and other costs of caring for you.

Compensation can be paid where a person is killed or dies.  These will be for funeral expenses and compensation to any living relatives, who were dependent on the dead person.

The Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme

The Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme (CICS) is a government-funded scheme administered by the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA). CICA makes financial awards to compensate people injured in England, Wales and Scotland as a result of violent crime. The injury can be physical, mental or both.

There are three possible types of CICA award:

  • a tariff award, based on the type of injury you have suffered
  • compensation for past and future loss of earnings
  • special expenses compensation

Making an application to CICA

Your application will only be considered if it is received on the prescribed CICA form within two years of the incident causing injury. This time limit will be extended only in very limited circumstances.

There is a general rule that any incident for which a claim is being made should be reported to the police straight away. If you don’t do you’re your application may be rejected.

Make an application to CICA 

5 rules of claiming CICA Compensation

  • Report the matter immediately to the Police, your employer and the Local Authority (if applicable) and keep details of the report. If the police are involved make sure you have the name and number of the police officer, the incident report number and the address of the police station.
  • Your application MUST be lodged in time. There is a 2 year time limit from the date of the criminal assault.
  • Keep your CICA reference safe and quote it any correspondence to CICA.
  • If your CICA application is rejected there are time limits for the Review and Appeal. You MUST do this within 90 days from the decision that you disagree with.
  • Keep copies of all your paperwork.

Do not accept compensation from an insurance company acting for your employer without taking legal advice. You may find that you have settled for less than you are actually entitled to. If you are injured at work, you will be entitled to Sick Pay. Your right to sick pay should be in your employment contract or your terms and conditions of employment.

If you are injured at work you may be able to make a personal injury compensation claim.

In order to win your personal injury claim and be awarded compensation, you must use the Pre-action protocol in proving your claim. There are a few things that you must prove to be successful;

  • You must first identify that there is a person, company or organisation to make the claim against.
  • You must show that the person, company or organisation owed you a duty of care to avoid your accident and injury, and could have taken steps to avoid the situation.
  • You must show that your injury was caused by the failure of the responsible person or organisation to take reasonable steps to avoid causing your accident or injury. [ see Accident at work, How to win your personal injury claim].

Updated: 15/03/2020


The information and content on this website is provided for general information purposes only and is not intended to constitute legal or other professional advice. Legal information or content on this website relates only to the laws of England and Wales. You should not take any actions based on information found on this website without first seeking appropriate legal advice with respect to your specific matter. No representations or warranties are made about the suitability, currentness, comprehensiveness and/or accuracy of the information and other content contained on this website. It should be noted that legal information and content can rapidly become out of date and we give no undertaking to keep this website up to date. All liability for any loss or damage of any kind which may be suffered as a result of accessing and using the information and/or content of this website is hereby excluded to the full extent permitted by law.