INJURY*

Slipped Disc at Work Injury Claims*

Slipped disc injuries* can reduce your quality of life and may leave you without the ability to work, especially if you require surgery. It is important that you receive a medical examination as soon as possible after you experience symptoms.

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What is a Slipped Disc?

A slipped disc, also known as a herniated disc, is an injury* to one of the discs which sit in the spine. If there has been damage to these discs of cartilage, they can press on the nerves in the neck and back causing pain and discomfort. Discs are the connective tissue or cartilage that lies between the vertebral bones. If you have sustained a herniated disc you and may feel pain, numbness weakness in the affected area. Slipped discs are a common reason that people make an accident at work claim* as they can be caused by heavy lifting and overexertion which is a common injury associated with work-based activities*. 

Who is Liable?

Workplace injuries* are a common occurrence and are generally caused by some form of negligence or breach of duty of care on behalf of the employer. Under the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act 2005, an employer has a certain responsibility to ensure the health and safety of all employees in the workplace. There are certain duties that they have to help ensure this is a priority. This includes;

  • Managing activities in a way which prioritises health and safety.
  • Carry out frequent risk assessments to identify and eliminate potential hazards.
  • Providing adequate training and personal protective equipment to all employees.
  • Maintain the working environment an all machinery and equipment.
  • Ensuring employees have the necessary facilities in order to carry out their job.
  • Ensuring that the workplace is practical for the work that is to be carried out.

Employer negligence is a common cause of many accidents at work*. If you have sustained injuries, such as a slipped disc, as a result of a breach of the duty of care by your employer you may be in a position to pursue a claim. If it can be shown that they did in fact breach health and safety regulations and did not follow their duties then they may be found liable for any workplace accidents or injuries*.

What are the Common Symptoms of a Herniated Disc Injury?

Herniated disc symptoms will vary depending on the severity of the slipped disc and where exactly in your back the disc slipped. For very minor slipped disc injuries, it may not even cause you any pain or discomfort. These minor issues tend to naturally heal themselves after a few weeks. In other cases, pain can be severe. Some of the common symptoms include: 

  • Pain and discomfort in the spine area.
  • Loss of mobility.
  • Numbness in the affected area.
  • Shooting pains caused by the disc touching nerves in your spinal cord.
  • A slipped disc at the top of your back/neck can be quite severe and in extreme cases can cause paralysis – temporary or permanent.

What are the Causes of Herniated Discs?

While most accidents can cause a person to injure their back* some of the common accidents that lead to a slipped disk are accidents at work, car accidents and slip and fall accidents. Among these injuries are sustained in the following ways:

Poor Manual Handling

Lack of manual handling training is a common cause of workplace accidents*, especially a ruptured disc. It is necessary for all employees to receive manual handling training so that they are aware of the precautions which should be taken when it comes to lifting heavy loads in the workplace. Bending in an awkward way, lifting an awkwardly shaped object incorrectly can all lead to injury.

Sitting for Extended Periods of Time

Many workers who are required to sit for long periods of time in order to carry out their job are at risk of sustaining a slipped disc injury. You are more at risk to sustain a back injury if you are sitting in an awkward position as this can put a strain on the muscles and cartilages in the back.

Overexertion

Overexertion while carrying out particular activities may result in sustaining a herniated disc due to the pressure that is put on the spine and muscles. If you are carrying out a particular task which involves strenuous work it is important that you pace yourself and try not to put too much pressure on the spine. It is important that you take regular breaks from this type of work to avoid the risk of injury.

Slip, Trip or Fall

At work or in a public place, a slip, trip or fall could be caused by wet floors with no signs*, falling from heights, warehouse accidents*, uneven flooring* or falling in areas with poor lighting, for example. It is the responsibility of the employer in a work scenario or the owners of the public place to ensure public safety by actively preventing these situations from happening.

Preventing Slipped Discs at Work

Most herniated disc injuries* occur from a manual handling error in work. Where an employer has not provided adequate training or the essential tool for lifting heavy objects they may find themselves in the midst of a claim. Adequate training should help prevent these injuries and ensure that the employee is aware of the following:

  • Check the weight before you attempt to lift. If it’s too heavy use a necessary lifting aid to help you, this should be made readily available by your employer.
  • Posture when lifting – lifting with your knees. Do not twist or arch your back. Keep your head straight and look in front of you when bending down to pick up as well as when lifting.
  • Hold the object close to your body when moving.

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We use our expert knowledge and 30 years’ experience to give you the voice you need. We use non-legal language and provide practical and impartial advice through every stage of the process!

Call us today on +353 1 649 9900 or contact us online.

How do I make a claim?

Once you have gathered all the relevant information in relation to your injury it is then time to move forward with your claim. It is important to use a personal injury* solicitor to help you with this.

  1. Prepare the information for a solicitor

    When you decide you want to move forward with your injury claim* it is important to have all the relevant information to hand when contacting a solicitor. Important information to have on hand at this point is:

    • Date of the accident
    • Location of the accident
    • Details of who/what caused the accident
    • Specifics of what happened
    • Who did you report the accident to?
    • If any emergency services attended the scene, and their details
    • Details of your injuries
    • Hospitals/Doctors attended with your injury
    • Any pictures you may have taken of the scene of the accident and/or your injuries
    • Details of any witnesses
    • Is there CCTV that may have captured the accident?
  2. Solicitor becomes your trusted advisor

    As a solicitor is aware of the injury claim* process they can avoid any legal bumps in the road you might encounter if you did this yourself. It is their job to be your trusted advisor on all legal matters throughout your case.

  3. Solicitor obtains a medical report

    The most important document needed to prove your injuries is your medial report. The reason a solicitor will ask for your doctor’s details or if you have attended the hospital is so they can obtain all the medical reports required to pursue the case for you.

  4. Solicitor prepares the Injuries Board application

    As soon as your solicitor has gathered all the information, your injury claim* will be submitted to the Personal Injuries Assessment Board for assessment. You solicitor will do this for you. Once the Injuries Board assess your claim your solicitor will revert with a suggested settlement amount. At this stage you have a choice to accept the Injuries Board assessment or reject it and move the next steps.

    At this point one of two scenarios will unfold:

    a. If both you and the party at fault accept the Injuries Board assessment, your case is settled and the person at fault will be ordered to pay settlement to you.

    b. If either you or the person at fault reject the Injuries Board assessment, then you move to the next stage and your solicitor will issue legal proceedings.

  5. Possible case outcomes

    Before you start to concern yourself with court and everything that comes with it, it’s important to understand that only a very small percentage of cases actually make it to a courtroom.

    Settlement meetings will be arranged where a settlement can be negotiated. Most cases are settled at this point without ever having to step foot into a courtroom and remember it’s your solicitor’s job to be with you every step of the way, right beside you to ensure that your best interests are met at all stages. Your solicitor is to be your trusted advisor throughout the process and to let you focus of your recovery, as they focus on settling your case.

At Tracey’s we make law accessible to all — regardless of your knowledge or experience with the claims process. For more information and a confidential discussion on your car accident, phone 01 649 9900 where you can speak with a member of our team straight away, or email ask@traceysolicitors.ie to tell us about your case.

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Case Settlement

If you are to proceed with an injury claim* you may be entitled to claim compensation for the injury and added expenses you may have incurred. These claims are called damages.

General Damages

General damages are non-financial damages such as pain and suffering and/or physical and emotional injuries following an accident*.

Special Damages

Special damages are out of pocket expenses incurred as a result of the injury*, for example, loss of earnings (if you are out of work), medical bills, and added travel costs as a result of the injury (for example, travel to and from the hospital). Learn more about Special Damages

Material Damages

Material damage refers to damage caused to your personal property. For example, in a road traffic accident, the material damage would be the damage to your car.

What are the Legal Time Limits?

The statute of limitations are the legal time limits on how long you have to make a claim — these vary depending on the situation. The general rule for most personal injury cases* is that the person has two years from the date of the accident or date of knowledge of the accident* to make a claim for compensation. Contacting a solicitor to discuss your case will help you in determining how long you have left to make a claim.

Learn more about Time Limits

About Tracey Solicitors

We draw on more than 30 years of experience in personal injury law to provide you with expert advice and legal services.

We’re here to help you with your claim, and will work with you to ensure you understand every step of your legal journey.

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