Vibration white finger is an industrial disease which has received much publicity in recent years. Part of a range of hand/arm vibration syndrome conditions it is now a recognised medical condition.
As a consequence, if you are suffering from vibration white finger, then you may be eligible for compensation, no matter when the condition started to develop. It is, therefore, advisable to approach a claims management company to discuss your situation in more detail.
When pursuing compensation for industrial disease, you will need to prove negligence on behalf of your employer. As vibration white finger is a recognised industrial, medical condition, related to the use of vibrating tools, it is fairly easy to diagnose.
Indeed, your doctor should also be able to backtrack over your working life and identify where and how the condition is likely to have begun.
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The condition will impact the nerves, blood vessels, muscles, hands, wrists and fingers of sufferers. Many have reported a numbness/tingling feeling in their fingers and a difficulty in gripping everyday items.
Some individuals may experience skin discolouration and a cold sensation across the fingers, which can sometimes turn red, white or blue. Others may report more general symptoms such as aches and pains across hands, fingers and arms and damage to joints, muscles or bones.
Yes. Under various legislation brought in by the UK government, all employers have a legal obligation to protect the physical and mental well-being of their employees.
This includes reducing the risk of vibration white finger, which is specifically covered in the Control of Vibration at Work Regulations Act 2005. The act places a legal obligation on all employers to:-
If you develop vibration white finger and believe that your employer has been negligent, has not fulfilled their duty of care, you may be eligible for compensation.
The vast majority of claims management companies will offer a “no win no fee” arrangement if, after reviewing your evidence, they believe you have a minimum 60% chance of success. If the company rates your chances at less than 60% this does not necessarily mean the end of the case; you could still pursue it in your own right covering legal and any related case costs.
However, these costs could be significant, and in the event of a failed prosecution, you may even be required to assist with defence expenses.
As the term suggests, if you pursue your case on a “no win no fee” arrangement, then you are effectively indemnified from your claims management company’s expenses in relation to your case.
This is why the forecast success bar is set so high at 60% - giving them a better than average chance of success. However, in exchange, they will look to negotiate a “success fee” which would see them receive a percentage of your compensation.
On average, your claims management company will look to negotiate a success fee of around 25%, although this can vary depending on the level of compensation received and the duration of the case. This is something that needs to be agreed upon before the claims management company can pursue your claim.
As we touched on above, the fees associated with an industrial disease compensation claim can be significant. Even if you had access to funds to cover such fees, would you be willing to risk them with no guarantee of success?
We know from research that the vast majority of both personal and industrial disease compensation claims would not be pursued without a “no win no fee” arrangement. If this type of arrangement was not available, how many potentially negligent third parties would escape being held to account?
Whether looking at personal or industrial disease compensation claims, there is a three-year window of opportunity in which you have to lodge your claim. It is important to note that this window of opportunity begins on the date of the first diagnosis, not necessarily the day the injury occurred or began to develop.
This is how many vibration white finger sufferers were able to claim compensation decades down the line, once the condition was recognised and the probable cause identified.
Your claims management company will explain the ins and outs of compensation, but in essence, it consists of what are known as general damages and special damages. General damages related to compensation for your pain and suffering.
Special damages relate to the reimbursement of costs incurred as a consequence of the condition, the funding required going forward and other elements which might include the potential loss of earnings and impact on family life.
There will be occasions where negligence has been accepted, but the two parties have not been able to agree on an out-of-court settlement for compensation. In this scenario, it may be possible for the claimant to apply for an interim payment through the courts to cover costs directly related to the condition.
If you are struggling financially, it is important that you inform your claims management adviser so that they can take the appropriate action.
Vibration white finger is seen by many as one of the breakthrough conditions with regards to industrial disease compensation dating back years. We know that many cases are still outstanding, some sufferers have failed to come forward, but occurrences of vibration white finger are less likely today.
If you recognise the symptoms and have used vibrating equipment in years gone by, you should seek professional advice about claiming compensation.
Here at Money Savings Advice, we have partnered with some of the UK’s leading Industrial illness Claims management companies. They have already helped thousands of people claim compensation for injuries & illnesses they have incurred, and they can do the same for you.
Choosing an independent claims management company means they won’t proceed with a claim unless they are sure it is in your best interests. They are also regulated by the FCA, which gives you an additional layer of protection.
If you would like to speak to one of these claim management companies who can help you make a compensation claim, then click on the below and answer the very simple questions.
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