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Thread: Returning to work from an accident at work

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  1. #1
    Jelly21's Avatar

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    Default Returning to work from an accident at work

    hi,

    just a quick question, here goes....

    i was involved in an accident at work which left me absent recovering from injuries which took 6-8 weeks.

    when I returned to work I still had issues from my injuries from the accident, before returning I sent 4 emails to management highlighting that I needed to be referred to OCC health so that support could be put in place for me on my return.

    management ignored these emails, didn't refer me to occupational health, gave full full duties on my first day back and gave me an 8 hour night shift call out the same day, i was rotated in to work 10 out of the next 11 days straight, with another forced 21 hour call out that weekend.

    management did not conduct an RTW interview, the process for this is documented in company policy as:

    A manger must conduct a RTW interview
    A company RTW form must be filled in ensuring supportive measures if any are documented and all relevant information is recorded.

    Can anyone advise me if they find this at all reasonable or is it as I believe a breech of my employers duty of care.

    thanks

  2. #2
    Ula's Avatar

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    Default Re: Returning to work from an accident at work

    A RTW interview written into a policy should, for the circumstances given in your post, really be followed, particularly if you have emailed them to request a referral to OCC. Was this a course of action supported/suggested by your GP?

    Employers have a duty of care which means that they should take all steps which are reasonably possible to ensure the health, safety and wellbeing of employees. If as a result of your return to work following the accident, there were duties or other job related tasks you could not undertake either on a temporary or permanent basis, there should have been discussion about this, which if you have a OCC in your company their advice should have been sought - in my opinion.
    I do my best to provide good practical advice, however I do so without liability.
    If you have any doubts then do please seek professional legal advice.


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    You are braver than you believe, smarter than you think and stronger than you seem.

  3. #3
    Jelly21's Avatar

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    Default Re: Returning to work from an accident at work

    Thanks ULA,

    The accident at work was a road traffic accident, expected full recovery from my gp was 6 -8 weeks.

    I was eventually referred to OCC health , after an interview with them they stated I needed to be put on a Phased Return consisting of :
    week1 50%
    week2 75%
    week3 75%
    week4 100%

    this only came to light when I got my SAR request back, from my employers privacy team.

    my employer chose not to follow OCC advice and left me on 100% duties with no phased return, citing OCC is only a recommendation and the aren't legally obliged to follow the advice.

  4. #4
    Ula's Avatar

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    Default Re: Returning to work from an accident at work

    Not being a medical person my comment would be that if OCC were advising a phased return to work then the plan that they had seems sensible.

    Unfortunately the company is correct in that they are not legally obliged to follow the advice but if I were an employer I would take the view that OCC are probably better experienced to advise on a return to work that takes account of any ongoing issues as a result of your injury and the effect on your daily duties.
    I do my best to provide good practical advice, however I do so without liability.
    If you have any doubts then do please seek professional legal advice.


    You canít always stop the waves but you can learn to surf.

    You are braver than you believe, smarter than you think and stronger than you seem.

  5. #5
    beaconsman's Avatar

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    Default Re: Returning to work from an accident at work

    I was supposed to be in light duties after my motorcycle accident, I was made to carry out heavy lifting and now been signed off again for a month due to back injuries being exasperated. doesnt help I have a pre existing injury form the forces...luckily enough I have been there over 12 months so get paid.

  6. #6
    Basement Bob's Avatar

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    Default Re: Returning to work from an accident at work

    Where do you go when after returning to work and the light duties abruptly end leaving you to struggle at full capacity?

    I ask as when I approached my manager in a similar situation, he said it was an h.r decision to resume and when you speak to h.r and say that you cant cope they don't let you see Occ Health and keep piling it on for months until your pain is worse than at the time of accident, your overdosing on paracetamol and nurofen with your injuries never been able to heal?

  7. #7
    beaconsman's Avatar

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    Default Re: Returning to work from an accident at work

    I would suggest a meeting with your line manager at first, if possible. Failing that, speak to HR and maybe inform them you are struggling? I made the mistake of going back and I was on light duties, I carried out a task for a colleague and this exasperated the injury due to heavy lifting, that was me signed off for a month. I have checked my contract though so I get paid. With a GP sick note I hope I am covered, I have a review next week during my half term to ascertain if I can return to work on the 30th October. Apologies about the delay in replying.

  8. #8
    Ula's Avatar

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    Default Re: Returning to work from an accident at work

    The suggestion from @beaconsman is a good one about arranging a meeting with HR to explain the situation.

    Alternatively could you speak to your GP who can suggest via the Fitness for Work Certificate light duties for a period of time - although as I have posted previously your employer is not legally obliged to follow the advice but it may add some "weight" to the concerns you have raised.
    I do my best to provide good practical advice, however I do so without liability.
    If you have any doubts then do please seek professional legal advice.


    You canít always stop the waves but you can learn to surf.

    You are braver than you believe, smarter than you think and stronger than you seem.

  9. #9
    beaconsman's Avatar

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    Default Re: Returning to work from an accident at work

    Well I am off again, this time until at least 30th November, my solicitors have been brilliant though and covering every aspect and possible eventualities withy employer. Obviously I cannot disclose much as it is a live case.

  10. #10
    beaconsman's Avatar

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    Default Re: Returning to work from an accident at work

    Had a letter from employer, meeting at a mutual location on 20th (week today), called GP as my appt wasn't until 30th Nov, pre booked one for the 16th....presume he/she may have a letter as to my possible return to work date..at this moment in time, i cannot drive far due to back/shoulder pain, plus the effects of medication render me unable to drive (commute is 30 miles one way...)

    All because of one idiot didn't see a red motorcycle with my headlights on..

  11. #11
    beaconsman's Avatar

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    Default Re: Returning to work from an accident at work

    Evening all, bit nervous about my meeting tomorrow morning at 10-30 (mutual location agreed). What should I say in regards to these?

    I have been off now for about 9 weeks in total. Unfit for work declared until 30th Nov so I cannot say what the GP will recommend after this..have a referral to orthopaedic dept at local hospital but no date given, ongoing Physio sessions. This is all through no fault of my own, stupid motorist took me out on motorbike on way back form work..

  12. #12
    Ula's Avatar

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    Default Re: Returning to work from an accident at work

    Good luck for today @beaconsman
    I do my best to provide good practical advice, however I do so without liability.
    If you have any doubts then do please seek professional legal advice.


    You canít always stop the waves but you can learn to surf.

    You are braver than you believe, smarter than you think and stronger than you seem.

  13. #13
    beaconsman's Avatar

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    Default Re: Returning to work from an accident at work

    Good Afternoon, well, I still have a job! I mentioned that we had looked at our finances and wondered wether we could manage in case..the HR staff that came were very nice and we discussed a phased return over 4-6 weeks if I declared fit on the 30th, if not then we can arrange it after Christmas..I hope to be able to return on the 1st Dec and we can arrange a phased return as at the moment its take each day as it comes..for the time being, I still have a job..

  14. #14
    beaconsman's Avatar

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    Default Re: Returning to work from an accident at work

    Just found out I have an appt on tuesday 5th for my injury at a specialist, GP appt wed evening to see if I can return to work this side of xmas, other wise its Jan 2018. 50% salary over xmas wont good though.

    Oh and to top it off, I re registered at a different surgery as our village one is no only open 2 full days a week which make it hard for us to get appointments (as they don't allow pre booking) i just found out the new one, in which i have been visiting the GP for and got my referral, is now saying I am not in their catchment and I have to re register at another one tomorrow. Charming.. they are honouring the appointment tonight though...
    Last edited by beaconsman; 29th November 2017 at 16:18:PM.

  15. #15
    beaconsman's Avatar

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    Default Re: Returning to work from an accident at work

    Advice needed Ref insurers independent medical experts' report.
    Update: Yesterday I travelled to my local Muscoskeltar clinic for an appointment with a spinal expert. He has referred me for an MRI spinal scan on the 16th December.
    I arrived home and caught up with emails, one was from the law firm which is representing me, it contained the report from eh medical expert carried out the 14th October (6 weeks...ago). The report does not me any favours at all and in fact looks like it has been written in order to ridicule my injuries and ongoing recovery. The report says I should be fit and well by January 2018! If that is the case, why did the consultant refer me for an MRI scan (which I have never had after the accident) and the GP notes indicate she is still waiting for an MRI result!(since changed surgeries due to a massive admin error by the the ones I registered with...(something about not being in their catchment).

    What should I do in regards to the errors and false prognosis in the medical report as obviously I have an MRI scan which has happened after the expert saw me, I also add that he never once physically examined me. I was in his office about 10 mins flat (my wife recalls how long I was in the building) so for hime to see in his expert opinion..is a load of tosh,,try my back pain...it is not pleasant. I will attend the MRI and hopefully the results will dispute this report.

  16. #16
    Ula's Avatar

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    Default Re: Returning to work from an accident at work

    I would let the law firm know the latest update from your appointment at the clinic and that you have an MRI scan booked. Request that until you have had the outcome of that scan you would not want the current report to be shared with the other side.
    I do my best to provide good practical advice, however I do so without liability.
    If you have any doubts then do please seek professional legal advice.


    You canít always stop the waves but you can learn to surf.

    You are braver than you believe, smarter than you think and stronger than you seem.

  17. #17
    beaconsman's Avatar

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    Default Re: Returning to work from an accident at work

    Duly noted, I asked for this course of action with a phone call yesterday. It has been agreed we await the MRI results, then if needed, a second opinion and prognosis based on this. I have requested an interim payment as now on 50% salary which is great before Christmas. So far, MY solicitors have said that cannot action this! I am the one that was hit, the other party has no injuries as he was in a car! Not happy at all..

  18. #18
    Peridot's Avatar

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    Default Re: Returning to work from an accident at work

    Hi Beaconsman,
    Not sure why your solicitors have said they won't request an interim. I appreciate that part or all of the injuries may be an exacerbation of previous injuries you sustained but that shouldn't make a difference. The Defendant has admitted liability so no issue there.

    The issue that may be a sticking point for them, is the fact the medical evidence is currently not supporting a longer recovery period. You'll appreciate that someone can admit liability but unless there is the evidence to support the injuries claimed to have been caused by the accident, there is no obligation to pay any damages whatsoever. I'm not for a minute suggesting this is the case here, but trying to explain why the defendant may be reluctant to offer an interim. However, that doesn't explain why your solicitor isn't asking for an interim payment. The worst the other side can say is no?

    If I remember rightly the Defendant did fund some treatments for you? That may be another reason for not asking for a further payment although technically rehabilitation is a separate issue to this.

    I think it is worth your asking the solicitor why they won't request an interim payment from the defendant. They may have a perfectly valid reason preventing them from making the request, but it would be helpful if they explained their reasoning.

    Sorry probably not what you want to hear but hopefully you can get some answers and understand better where the solicitor is coming from. Hoping the scan goes ok next week.
    I am a qualified solicitor employed by the LegalBeagles forum to provide guidance on a wide range of legal queries. I am happy to try and assist informally, where needed.

    Any posts I make on LegalBeagles are for information and discussion purposes only and shouldn't be seen as legal advice. Any practical advice I give is without liability. I do not represent people on the forum.

    If in doubt you should always seek professional face to face legal advice.

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