Injury claims: worth an arm and a leg or fall on deaf ears

Industry news roundup: week ended 21 July 2014:

The scope of personal injury claims in the UK is so large that while some people end up literally paying and arm and a leg. others injuries fall on deaf ears.

I’m not being facetious either when I say a personal injury compensation campaign can cost you an arm and a leg. I’m being literal – a German aircraft worker recently won around £600,00 (750,000 euro) in damages after he lost an arm and a leg in an accident at a British airport. It’s been four long years since this poor bloke has had to go without a compensation award, but now the wait is over – and he can finally rest assured that he has the cash he needs to help him manage with two lost limbs. I can only imagine how terrible a time the man’s had over the last four years, especially since his compensation award has been tied up for so long!

Meanwhile not all work accident claims are created equal. It turns out that a new research study released this week found that personal injury claims for industrial deafness have gone up to around 80,000 in 2013 – a jump of more than two thirds. Despite this huge increase – or maybe even because of it – insurers are flat-out refusing deafness claims in droves. In fact, major British insurer Aviva rejects more than 8 out of every 10 claims, claiming that the lion’s share are simply instances of fraud.

Deafness claims are actually rather lucrative from a compensation point of view, with industry analysts claiming that insurers could end up paying anywhere from £300 million to £500 million on an annual basis, and that’s if only 30 per cent of claims were actually permitted to be brought. That might be a drop in the bucket when compared to car accident claims, but it’s a serious chunk of change – and insurers if nothing else hate parting with money when they don’t have to. At the same time, anyone who has experienced hearing loss due to working in a loud environment where they were not provided proper ear protection deserves to be compensated. Do you have any idea how costly a pair of hearing aids can be? You can’t just pick one up at your local Tesco, you know!

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