If you suffered injury to your hand, you may be able to make a hand injury compensation claim. Hand injuries often have a profound impact on a person’s quality of life and ability to work. Because of this, in our experience, hand injury claims often lead to significant compensation settlements.
Over the years we have acted in numerous hand injury claims, and what follows is a selection of examples. If you want to see more case examples involving hand injuries, check out this article (lost fingertip injury) or this one (compensation for army veteran).
Carpal tunnel syndrome is a very common injury, especially for people who do physical work. For example, a client of ours developed this condition while working on a farm using her hand to pick produce. As you can imagine, it’s hard work, it’s repetitive and there is time pressure. When you do this day in, day out, it takes a toll and that’s exactly what happened to our client.
We also acted for a gentleman who had served in the Australian Army as a mechanic, and due to the heavy demands of the job, he developed bilateral carpal tunnel syndrome.
In many cases, carpal tunnel syndrome can affect both hands. For example, you initially hurt the right hand, then you return to work and try and compensate and use the left hand more, then you also develop carpal tunnel syndrome in the left hand.
The other issue is, sometimes, what starts out as carpal tunnel syndrome can also lead to chronic pain syndrome. The way this happens is that you undergo surgery for the carpal tunnel but then the pain doesn’t go away. Usually, doctors (and WorkCover) will say that the pain should have gone away (as if it was your fault that you are still feeling pain) and it is only after a few more months that they realise that you might also have chronic pain syndrome.
We have acted for clients who suffered fractures in their hand (including small-ish fractures called avulsion fractures) and we also represented people who have had to undergo partial amputations.
Sadly, serious injuries (involving amputations) can happen when machines are not in good order, or they have a design flaw. As an example, one of our clients was working in a manufacturing plant when he suffered a crush injury to his finger due to a faulty coiling machine. Our client ended up needing a partial nail plate excision and a nail plate ablation.
It’s important to understand that sometimes bad workplace practices can lead to the worsening of conditions that previously didn’t cause you any problems.
For example, as people age, they can start developing arthritis in the hand. Often, this won’t be noticeable for a very long time and won’t stop you from doing your normal activities. But a hit at work by a fault machine, or an impact in a car accident, can turn something that wasn’t a problem before into a painful condition. If you are interested in legal jargon, this is called an aggravation of a previously asymptomatic condition.
Here is something important to remember: an insurance company will always try to say that because you had a pre-existing condition, you can’t get compensation. This is simply not true.
For example, you can have arthritis which you wouldn’t feel for years to come but which can be seen on X-ray. If you suffer an injury which makes the arthritis painful, and this impacts your ability to work, you are entitled to compensation even though you had the arthritis before the accident.
There are mainly 3 things to consider.
Firstly, your quality of life is affected. You may need help at home, you may not be able to play sports or pursue your hobbies and so on.
Secondly, medical costs need to be paid. If you had a work injury, right now WorkCover might be paying your medical bills, but what about medical expenses 3, 5 or 10 years from now? It’s important to have these assessed and these can, and should, be recovered as part of your claim. As an example, with hand injuries , it is very common to experience daily pain which not only adversely impacts your quality of life but it also means there will be basic home chores that you can’t do. In some case, surgery to the nerves can help reduce the pain. Read this article which is about a case where we helped our client secure the cost of surgery (as a private patient ) in order to eliminate her pain and regain (at least in part) her quality of life.
Thirdly, income loss (which is also called economic loss). People always find this surprising, but in the calculus of personal injury law, often the biggest part of your compensation amount is for economic loss. This is not just lost income between the accident and now. It’s also loss which you may incur in the future.
Just imagine a 45-year-old person on $1,000 per week. They suffer an accident and they can only ever return to work for 20 hours per. That’s $500 lost every week. They have another 22 years until retirement. If you do the math, that’s a big loss. And loss of superannuation would be added on top.
Compensation for economic loss is so important that we have created a brochure to explain this in more detail. You can request it here or we can post a hard copy to you.
Our first step is a face-to-face meeting with Oszkar Denes, our principal solicitor. Find out more about Oszkar here.
The meeting is completely free. We will get a bit more information from you about your injuries, and we explain the claim process.
Please contact us using the form at the bottom of this page or call us on (07) 3063 2268.
Many firms try to rush you to sign up with them without carefully considering your options. We encourage you to first learn about your personal injury claim. You should ask yourself:
Our book is available to you free of charge. You don’t have to be a client to receive this book. Head to the order page and we will be happy to send you a copy straight away.
In all of our personal injury compensation matters, we act on a No Win – No Fee basis. What that means is, there’s no upfront cost to you.
In Queensland, most compensation firms will charge you 50% of your compensation amount – the maximum allowed at law. This is very expensive. Our fee is different. We will cap our fee at 25% . Remember also, these are the maximum fees we will charge. If our fee in your claim is less, then we charge the lesser amount.
Before you engage us, we will provide you a written Disclosure Notice and a Client Service Agreement. These documents set out in detail the service we provide, as well as our fees and outlays. Before you sign anything, you can take these documents home with you, and study them with your family. You can take as long as you need, there is never any pressure from us. If anything in these documents doesn’t make sense to you, we can discuss it with you and you are free to ask another lawyer to give you advice. And remember, no win – no fee agreements come with a 5 day cooling off period for extra peace of mind.