We all know that our teachers work extremely hard to educate the children of Britain, what I’m sure most people don’t know is the level of compensation paid out to the industry yearly.
Last week The Mirror reported that NASUWT teacher’s union revealed it secured a total of £16m compensation for its members last year, and A.T.L (The association of teachers and lecturers) also claim to have recovered £900,000 for injured teachers. These are just two of the unions that represent teachers, so taking into account other unpublished union figures and action taken through private solicitors the overall figure could be astronomical.
Given the media’s portrayal of our schools in recent years you may be forgiven for assuming a lot of the compensation is paid out to teachers who have incurred injuries as a result of breaking up fights in the schoolyard or suffered pupil attacks. However a large proportion of the amount is due to basic health and safety procedures not being adhered to such as defective equipment or furniture being provided.
One reported case involved a member of teaching staff in North Wales being given a £100,000 compensation package when he banged his head on a concrete floor as the chair he sat on collapsed. It was later discovered that three bolts were missing from the furniture. Another teacher from the North West was awarded £55,000 after she tripped on a tear in a lino floor.
Chris Keates general secretary of NASUWT said “The consequence of negligence is careers, lives and health blighted and millions of pounds of public money spent in compensation.
We all know that school budgets have been hit hard by government cuts but all employers including schools have an obligation to ensure they provide a safe working environment for their employees, which obviously is not happening within our schools system. Teachers do an extremely important job in educating our youth and they deserve to do so without fear of injury.
If you work in the education system and have suffered similar experiences to the ones highlighted above get in touch with us today, we can ensure you receive the maximum amount of compensation owed to you.
“The recent case of RE –v- GE (2015) EWCA Civ 287 was a case based on historical sexual abuse claims but it brought to light ongoing legal debates as to what factors are to be considered when asking the courts to extend the time period for limitation. The case of Re –v- GE in itself focused on an interesting point of whether abuse of this nature were considered a case of personal injury which would attach a 3 year limitation period under the Limitations Act 1980 or whether it was a case of assault/battery which would then fall under the typical 6 year limitation period.
The court’s found in Re-v- GE that it amounted to a case of personal injury. However, given that the client was a minor at the time and she did not bring the case until 24 years after the standard age of majority (which is 3 years after she turned 18) she therefore had to rely on the discretion of the courts under S.33 of the Limitation Act 1980 to extend the time period for limitation.
The courts will take certain factors into consideration when they review whether to apply S.33. However, the main factor in this case is whether or not it was still possible for a fair Trial to take place. In essence, this involved whether the Defendant could investigate the allegations that are being put forward in relation to such abuse claims. The usual assertion is that there will always be a lack of evidence given the passage of time. In this particular case, the Judge ruled that the Claimant’s claim did not benefit from an extension and that her claim did not satisfy the criteria to pass the test.
In light of the above factors, it is always advisable to avoid any delays when bring personal injury claims. Here at Driscoll Kingston Solicitors we strongly advise clients that they should bring their claim to a legal advisor at the earliest possible date, when the evidence is fresh and their recall of the accident circumstances is fresh”
Eilish Cullen LL.B (Hons)