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We are all aware that if we sustain an injury at work a claim is submitted to the employer but how many know that you can also submit a second claim for industrial benefit. Failure to do may result in you missing out on potential payments up to £158.10 per week, possibly for life.
Remember, this is separate to the a claim against an employer.
When a person is injured at work a claim is submitted to the employer/company. In such cases it is also important that they submit a second claim for industrial benefit. These are two different claims that have no relevance to each other apart from the injury.
The first claim is to the employer and the second to the government industrial benefit scheme which has been in existence for many decades. Surprisingly, few people submit an industrial benefit claim, even more people are actually aware that it exists.
If you have sustained an injury at work, irrespective of when it happened, you may be entitled to extra benefits from the government due to that injury. What is important is that all other industrial injuries can/will be included, irrespective of when they occurred.
Unlike a claim against an employer the industrial benefit scheme does not have any
time limit in which to claim.
Although benefit can only be backdated for a limited period of time so the sooner you claim the better.
ATCU recommends that it is always advisable to apply for a ‘declaration’ that you have had an industrial accident, even if you do not want to claim any benefit right away. You can do this on the form available for download from the website of DIrect.gov. It's a good idea to apply for a declaration if you are not disabled immediately after your accident, but you think you may experience some problems in the future as a result.
In order to claim you must have suffered personal injury caused by an accident arising out of, and in the course of your work. Remember, there is no time limit for claiming. So, you can claim even if the accident happened months or years ago.
You must have suffered a loss of physical disability amounting to more than a particular percentage. The percentage at which you qualify for benefit is usually 14% but there are exceptions. For example, for some respiratory diseases the percentage is 1%, for occupational deafness it is 20%.
If you already have a percentage assessment because of a previous injury, the percentage for any new assessment will be added to it. If your previous percentage had not been high enough for you to qualify, this could mean that you may now be eligible. Also, if you have been refused this benefit in the past, if the injury gets worse in time, you can claim again. The percentage disability may have increased to the level where you will be entitled to get the benefit.
After attending the assessment you are awarded 5% disability due to damage to your finger, as this does not meet the qualifying of 14% no payment will be awarded. However, several years later you are involved in another accident at work which results in damage to the knee and awarded 11% disability. These are totalled up equalling 16% and thus a payment would be awarded. If either of the injuries became worse, and following further assessments, the percentage may be increased and you would be awarded a higher payment. However the reverse may happen if the symptoms improve.
How do you obtain a claim form for these benefits?
How is the degree of disability assessed?
You must attend a medical assessment to decide the severity of your disability. The doctor compares your health with that of a healthy person of the same age and sex. On the basis of the assessment you are given a percentage (%) disability.
How much is Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit?
The amount of benefit depends upon the degree of disability. The higher the percentage disability, the more benefit is payable. Some examples are as follows (rates as at April 2012 and the rates usually go up each April):
20% disability - £ £31.62 per week
50% disability - £ £79.05 per week
100% disability - £ 158.10 per week (payments correct at date of print)
Rates are less if you are under the age of 18 and have no dependents. Benefit is payable from the 15th week after the accident. Payment is usually made directly into a bank account, building society account, post office account, or national savings account.
A member was advised by ATCU to claim for the government injury benefit because of an injury he sustained at work which resulted in him receiving medical attention and an operation on his knee. Following the medical he was awarded over £40 per week. This was over 18 months ago and he is still in receipt of this payment.
Another member injured her arm and she received over £20 per month.