Introduction

This case study provides an insight into the expertise within the litigation team of RP Crawford & Co. resolve a workplace accident. Liam McDonald assisted by our litigation paralegal Gemma McCashin represented a plaintiff who had previous lower back vulnerabilities. During the course of his employment he sustained a soft tissue lower back injury which worsened his condition for 24 months after lifting concrete blocks on a construction site. The Defence Insurer obtained medical evidence which suggested the Plaintiff’s soft tissue injury was exacerbated for 9 months and this was a factual dispute between the parties. Our firm have significant expertise in navigating complex workplace injury claims and achieving favourable outcomes and we set out a summary below.

Client Background

The plaintiff, SG, was a construction worker employed by a local Construction Company. On a routine workday, GS was instructed to lift heavy concrete blocks from a lorrybed to various sites. On this day a grab/lift was unavailable and so he proceeded without proper lifting equipment. As a result, he suffered a lower back injury, leading to chronic pain and substantial limitations on his daily activities. Following MRI and X-Ray diagnostics the medical experts concluded the Plaintiff had pre-existing lower back problems, our Consultant considered his pain was exacerbated for 24 months whilst the Defence Insurer Consultant considered his pain was exacerbated for 9 months.

Legal Approach

Upon being retained by GS, RP Crawford & Co. initiated a thorough investigation into the circumstances surrounding the workplace accident. The legal team analysed medical records, gathered witness statements, training records and assessed the extent of GS’ injuries to build a strong case.

Challenges Faced

Several challenges were encountered during the course of the legal proceedings. These challenges included:

  1. Establishing liability: The legal team needed to prove that the employer had failed to provide a safe working environment and proper training to GS, leading to the accident and subsequent injury.
  2. We obtained expert engineering evidence from a Health and Safety Engineer.
  3. Demonstrating causation: It was crucial to establish a clear connection between GS back injury and the concrete block lifting incident. This required expert medical opinions and evidence to support the claim. The pre-existing low back vulnerability made this more difficult.
  4. Contributory liability: The Defence insurer after lengthy negotiation accepted liability but attempted to assert that the Plaintiff was partly responsible as they should have waited for lifting equipment to arrive. We successfully argued this point and the Defence conceded the argument.
  5. Assessing damages: The legal team needed to accurately quantify the financial and non-financial damages suffered by GS due to the accident. This included loss of earnings, pain and suffering, and diminished quality of life.

Legal Strategy and Negotiations

RP Crawford & Co. adopted a comprehensive legal strategy aimed at maximizing the compensation for GS. The legal team engaged in negotiation with the employer’s insurance company, presenting a strong case backed by compelling evidence, expert opinions, and statutory regulations.

Outcome

After persistent negotiations and extensive legal representation, RP Crawford & Co. secured a settlement of £75,000 on behalf of GS. The settlement covered compensation for pain and suffering endured over the 24-month period following the accident and loss of earning.

Conclusion

The successful resolution of this workplace accident case by RP Crawford & Co. exemplifies the firm’s commitment to ensuring the maximum compensation possible for injured individuals. By diligently investigating the incident, building a robust legal case, and skilfully negotiating with the insurance company, the legal team achieved a favourable outcome for their client, ensuring that GS received the compensation they deserved for the physical, emotional, and financial hardships he endured.