Farm Machinery Accident Compensation Claims
If you have been injured in an accident with a machine on a farm, or a loved one has been killed in a farm machinery accident, it may be possible to make farm machinery accident compensation claims in the UK.
Farm machinery is potentially dangerous even in good weather conditions, but when you add slippery ground, rain, snow and wind the chances of an accident increases substantially. Highly serious injuries are common when farm machinery is used incorrectly or is in poor condition, and fatal accidents are far from uncommon in the agriculture industry.
Combine harvesters, tractors and heavy farm machinery are frequently the reason why serious injuries are sustained on farms and, when injuries are sustained due the negligence or lack of care by an employer or farmer, you may be entitled to make farm machinery accident compensation claims.
When Can Farm Machinery Accident Compensation Claims be Made?
In order to be eligible to make farm machinery accident compensation claims in the UK, a claimant must be able to prove that an accident occurred which was not entirely their fault, and that the primary cause of the accident was the negligence of a third party. Negligence is a failure in a duty of care, and farm machinery accidents commonly involve employer negligence. Employers may attempt to cut corners to increase profits or to make sure that important work is completed on time.
There can be numerous delays caused by the weather which have severe cost implications to farmers. The weather can place farm workers under extreme time pressure, and employers may place workers at risk to ensure that crops are harvested on time and that planting is completed before bad weather moves in. When the actions of an employer increases the risk to employees to an unacceptable standard, and an injury is consequently sustained, farm machinery accident compensation claims can be made.
Due to low profit margins in agriculture, young workers are often employed who lack the skills necessary to complete tasks safely. Proper training may not be provided on the safe use of farm machinery, and there can be cut backs made on maintenance of farm equipment. Health and safety equipment may not be provided and guards on farm machinery may not be replaced when broken. Unguarded farm machinery can easily result in clothing or limbs being caught, which can cause horrific injuries to farm workers. When an employer does not provide proper training, or when risks are not reduced to an acceptable level, he has failed in his duty of care to his workers. When an accident has been caused by such a failure in a duty of care, and a personal injury is sustained, workers on a farm have a legal right to make a claim for farm machinery accident compensation.
Reasons for Making Farm Machinery Accident Compensation Claims
There are many reasons why farm machinery accident compensation claims can be made in the UK; however the most common reasons why farm machinery accidents occur are listed below. All of these accidents may be grounds for making farm machinery accident compensation claims when they are due to third party negligence.
- Accidents with farm vehicles
- Accidents with baling machines
- Combine harvester accidents
- Accidents caused by faulty farm equipment
- Injuries sustained when safety equipment fails or is not provided
- Injuries caused by vibrating farm machinery
- Crushing injuries by farm machinery
- Limbs caught by farm machinery
- Falling from a height from farm machinery
- Being hit by falling objects
- Deafness caused by excessive machine noise
If you have been involved in a farm machinery accident and have sustained an injury, you should seek legal advice about making a claim for farm machinery accident compensation. Farm machinery accident compensation claims can also be made by dependants or relatives of the victim of a fatal farm machinery accident.
Damages Awarded in Farm Machinery Accident Compensation Claims
Farm machinery accident compensation claims often involve substantial compensation amounts, with the damages awarded reflecting the serious nature of many farm machinery accidents. Farm machinery can be highly dangerous and can cause crushing injuries, amputation of body parts and severe musculoskeletal injuries; all of which can result in permanent disabilities being suffered. When a farm worker can no longer work for a living, damages need to include considerable loss of earnings on top of extensive medical treatment costs, changes to accommodation when the victim is confined to a wheelchair and for considerable loss of amenity. All aspects of an injury must be included in farm machinery accident compensation claims, such as the pain and suffering caused and how an injury impacts on everyday life.
Calculation of the value of a farm machinery accident compensation claims is best performed by an experienced personal injury solicitor, and will involve obtaining expert medical assessments to determine how the injuries have affected an individual. A personal injury solicitor will make the necessary arrangements for medical examinations to be completed and use this information to determine how much compensation for farm machinery accident you may be entitled to.
Costs of Making Farm Machinery Accident Compensation Claims
Farm machinery accident victims not only have to deal with their injuries, but often have to pay to recover compensation. The services of a personal injury solicitor may not be free of charge, and the costs of making farm machinery accident compensation claims may be off-putting for farm accident victims. Should farm machinery accident compensation claims succeed, it will be the defendant`s insurance company that will cover the legal costs of the claimant. However if a claim for farm machinery accident compensation fails, not only will the accident victim have to pay for their own legal costs, but they will also have to cover those of the defence.
Fortunately however, third party legal costs can be covered if an ‘After the Event’ insurance policy is taken out, and personal legal costs can be waived when farm machinery accident compensation claims are pursued on a No Win No Fee basis. No Win No Fee legal representation is not always possible, and this conditional fee agreement is only offered when a compensation for farm machinery accident claim has a good chance of being successful.
When a claim is undertaken on a No Win No fee basis and ‘After the Event’ insurance is taken out, the claimant can limit their financial exposure if a claim does not succeed. This can make legal action to recover compensation for farm machinery accident less of a worry for the victim. For advice on No Win No Fee representation in farm machinery accident compensation claims, a personal injury solicitor should be consulted.
Insurance Companies and Third Party Capture
When an accident occurs on a farm, and a worker or member of the public is injured, it is not the farm owner who is personally liable to pay farm machinery accident compensation, as his employer liability insurance company will provide cover. Although insurance companies are keen to sell their policies, they are less keen to make compensation payments as these decrease company profits. Insurance companies would not deny a claimant farm machinery accident compensation in valid farm machinery accident compensation claims, but they will make attempts to ensure that compensation amounts are kept to the absolute minimum.
One tactic which is becoming increasingly common is that of third party capture. If an accident victim can be convinced to accept a compensation payment before farm machinery accident compensation claims are made, the insurance company can make a significant saving. If the victim accepts a early compensation payment, the insurance company will be able to save a considerable amount of money by avoiding legal fees and court costs.
Early offers of compensation are becoming increasingly common, and farm machinery accident victims are often contacted with offers of compensation before they have sought legal advice or even before they know the full extent of their injuries. If you have been involved in an farm machinery accident, and are contacted by a third party insurance company with an offer of compensation, it is vital that you seek legal advice before accepting an offer of farm machinery accident compensation to ensure that it is fair and adequately covers all aspects of your injuries.
Always Seek Legal Advice About Farm Machinery Accident Compensation Claims
Even when a farm machinery accident has been clearly caused by third party negligence it is recommended that the victim contacts a personal injury solicitor for legal advice about making farm machinery accident compensation claims at the earliest possible opportunity. Farm machinery accident compensation claims can be highly complicated, especially when there are no witnesses to an accident. When an employer denies liability, litigation may be required through the UK courts and a solicitor must be used.
Many farm machinery accident compensation claims are settled quickly when a personal injury solicitor is introduced to the claim as soon as is practical and the chances of making successful farm machinery accident compensation claims are also improved.