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Don’tTuesday 28 March 2017

Don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater! Post-Brexit, UK workers deserve to maintain workplace accident protection.


Oxford Accident Solicitors can remember the bad old days when people injured at work through no fault of their own faced devastating consequences, including loss of income and their jobs placed at risk.

The development of English laws to support EU directives together with increased media awareness regarding accident at work compensation changed that landscape for the better. In recent years the number of accidents at work has greatly decreased as a direct result of employers having to improve standards to avoid being taken to court.

In the wake of Britain’s vote to leave the EU, there has been lots of speculation about workers being thrown to the lions and a return to those bad old days of more tenuous employment rights. As experienced professionals when it comes to helping local people with compensation claims, Oxford Accident Solicitors hold a more nuanced opinion.

Fears that Brexit means an automatic rejection of laws protecting UK workers will probably turn out to be unfounded. However, UK workers will have to be vigilant of the erosion of these rights by more devious means.

Changes to road accident compensation provide a stark warning. The UK government has announced that fixed tariffs will apply to people who suffer from soft tissue injuries in motor accidents from October 2018. In addition, a client’s ability to recover their legal fees will be scrapped or massively reduced.

Damages will be limited to £225 for injuries lasting up to three months through to £765 where the injury lasts nine months. Compensation will range from £1,190 for injuries lasting up to a year to £3,725 for two years. The government has done this because the insurance industry has promised cheaper car insurance.

So what will stop the government rolling out a similar schedule/tariff system for accidents at work? The simple answer is ‘nothing’. If the insurance industry fears a growth in claims they will petition government to find a way of capping and controlling them. The theoretical rights of the worker will still be protected but the compensation the injured party receives will reduce considerably.

The volume of EU directives and rules is vast - and they all have legal force in the UK until the Brexit negotiations are complete. After we are out, it will be for Parliament to decide whether to keep them or scrap them. When it comes to EU norms that have improved health and safety standards in the UK workplace, Oxford Accident Solicitors will support all efforts to make sure they are kept and not scrapped.

Oxford Accident Solicitors have been helping local families with compensation claims for over 20 years. If the worst does happen and you need to make a claim, we will work hard on your behalf to ensure that you get the compensation you need and are entitled to.

If you have been injured, speak to a specialist solicitor. The advice above should help your claim proceed with ease. Call OAS today on 01865 315309.

 

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