Burns, Scalding and Scarring Injuries

Burns are very painful injuries and even a small burn or a scald can cause pain and discomfort for a long period of time. The more serious the burns then the more serious the injury. This may allow you to make a claim for compensation, especially if the accident that caused you to be burnt was not your fault.

Our specialist personal injury solicitors have over forty years of experience in dealing with burns and scalding injuries. They have helped our clients to obtain compensation they deserved as well as necessary treatment for their injury, sometimes not available on NHS. Contact our experts for Free Consultation

Burns

Approximately 130,000 people visit A&E departments each year suffering with burns. Some of these injuries include:

  • Scalded/burnt flesh
  • Facial and eye burns
  • Respiratory burns
  • Tendon, ligament or muscle damage
  • Permanent scarring
  • Psychological effects from the burn

Burns are most commonly caused by heat, however, they can also be caused by intense cold and chemicals. Scalds are caused by hot liquids or steam. Burns are classified by severity, and include:

First degree burns

1st degree burns are primarily surface-level, affecting only the epidermis or skin. They are also known as superficial burns, and have a general healing time of 5-10 days on average

Second degree burns

2nd degree burns extend deeper into the dermis level and are classified into two levels, either superficial partial thickness or deep partial thickness. These have a general healing time of less than 2-3 weeks, if they are superficial, or 3-8 weeks if they are deep.

Third degree burns

3rd degree burns, also known as full thickness, extend through the entire dermis and take prolonged periods to heal, at least months, and are often incomplete in healing.

Fourth degree burns

4th degree burns extend through the entire skin, and into underlying fat, muscle and bone. These often require excision to heal to a degree.

Scarring

If you have been involved in an accident, caused by another’s negligence, which has resulted in scarring to any part of your body you may be entitled to compensation.

Scars on your face are obviously more visible and therefore attract more compensation. In order to recover compensation we would need to show that someone else is legally at fault or, perhaps partially at fault. To be in a position to value your claim our teams will:

  • Investigate the circumstances of your accident
  • Obtain a medical report which would deal with the prognosis i.e. whether the scarring is likely to get better, whether any scar revision is needed.

In addition to the claim for scarring, we will review and advise you on compensation for the financial aspects that may be associated with the scarring. For example if the injury means you can no longer work.

Often scarring will occur as a result of other injuries, such as a serious leg injury or the bone has broken the skin, or from a burn.

Also, scarring to the forearms and de-gloving injuries can result in serious tendon damage which can affect the long-term use of the hand and therefore the ability to work.

Remember to take photographs

It is important to take good quality colour photographs of the burns/scarring and keep dates as to when they were taken showing the progress of the healing.

Claiming compensation for a burn or scalding at work

Most workplace burns occur needlessly and could have been prevented if the correct procedures had been followed and the right protective equipment provided. Burns and scalds are relatively common injuries for those working in environments where extreme heat, machinery and chemicals are present.

They are all too common in professional/commercial kitchens and industrial plants.

Common causes of suffering burns or scalds at work:

  • Hot surfaces being exposed
  • Unsafe electrical equipment
  • Handling hot liquids without the correct protection

How to make a claim

  • Seek medical advice

If you have suffered burns or scalding at work make sure you seek immediate medical advice from your GP or a hospital. The accident should also be recorded in your company’s accident book immediately, or as soon after your injury as possible.

  • Legal advice

Our specialist personal injury solicitors have been representing people who have suffered workplace accidents over the last forty years and are experienced at dealing with negligent employers. Your employer has a duty to protect you. They are required by law to hold a valid Employers Liability insurance cover to protect you and your co-workers from workplace accidents.

  • Compensation

When an employer has been found to have acted negligently, or is in breach of health and safety regulations, their insurer will be required to pay compensation.

How much can I claim?

As every injury is personal, the amount you can potentially claim for a burn or scalding injury will be personal to you. For personal and confidential advice call our specialist personal injury solicitors today on 0808 250 2129 and they will look into making a claim for you.

Time limit in burns and scalding injury claims

A claim must be brought (submitted to the court) within three years of the date you suffered an injury or three years of you being aware that you have suffered an injury. There is an exception for children under the age of 18 years who have until they reach their 21st birthday to submit their claim to court.

No Win No Fee claims with Hodge Jones & Allen

The majority of our cases are funded by way of a conditional fee agreement, more commonly known as a No Win No Fee agreement. This means there is no financial risk to you.

Example of our Work: Serious burns sustained by electricity

Our client was a railway worker who sustained serious injuries as a result of electrocution whilst at work. An unsafe system of work was established. Our Client suffered burns to his body and his face which left him with substantial scarring. He required numerous operations to revise the scarring to his face and upper body. There was also a claim for past loss of earnings, care and assistance and future losses relating to care and earnings.

Frequently asked questions

Should I take photographs of my burns/scars?

Yes it is sensible to take some good quality colour photographs of the scarring injury both at the outset of the injury and throughout the healing process. It is also advised to mark these with the dates that they were taken and ask someone to take some photographs from a conversational distance.

How will my burns/scars be valued?

Each case will be valued based on the individual injuries sustained and where the scar/burn is on the body. The injury will be valued using case law (considering cases in which people have sustained similar injuries) and also JC Guidelines which are guidelines by a panel of Judges.

In combination with this, good quality colour photographs will help to assist valuing the claim and taking into account how conscious the injured party is of the scar/burn, sensitivity to the area and whether future treatment will be required/permanency of the injury and any psychological impact this has caused.

What evidence should I keep?

Depending on how the injury occurred, it is important to have a record of how the accident happened, for example if it took place at work, then it is essential to have the injury recorded in an accident book at work. If the accident has taken place in a restaurant or shop for example then again it is important that the accident is recorded in an accident book.

When you seek medical attention, the hospital or GP surgery will also make a record of how the accident happened and the nature of the burn/scar injury and what treatment has taken place. Copies of medical records can therefore be obtained.

 

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