I was operating a farm tractor when I suddenly received a severe electric shock from the controls. How do I claim compensation for a farm tractor accident?
How you can claim compensation for a farm tractor accident will depend not only on who is liable for your accident, but also whether this third party is willing to accept liability for your injury. In order to claim compensation, an injury must have occurred which was due to the negligence of another party who owed you a duty of care. In this case, your employer on the farm may be held liable for your electric shock if they provided you with a tractor which was malfunctioning. Even if they were unaware of the danger it posed, they can still be held liable for failure to perform regular safety checks upon it.
However it is possible that you were at least partially responsible for your farm tractor accident. For instance – if you were operating the tractor in a reckless manner, you were aware of a malfunction but continued to use the tractor regardless, or if the tractor was your own. In this case the amount of compensation to which you may be entitled can be reduced – perhaps drastically so. Contributory negligence can also be a factor if you failed to seek immediate medical attention for your injuries, making them worse in the process.
If somebody else was at least partially responsible for your injury, you are advised to contact a personal injury lawyer who can guide you through the process of making a claim. When sufficient evidence has been gathered to support your claim a letter of claim may be sent to your employer – or their insurers – to inform them that a claim is to be made for injury compensation.
They will have three weeks in order to acknowledge this letter, after which they have ninety days to conduct an investigation of their own into your accident and accept or reject liability for your injuries. If accepted, a compensation amount can be negotiated. If rejected, your lawyer may have to initiate court proceedings. There is a possibility that the insurers may at this stage attempt to settle the compensation out of court in order to avoid potential legal costs.
Regardless of how certain you may be regarding liability of a third party for your farm tractor accident – or of the strength of your claim – you are advised to contact a personal injury lawyer at the earliest opportunity. Your lawyer can determine the strength of the evidence you have gathered, the likelihood of a successful claim and the compensation to which you may be entitled. It may take some time in order to prepare a claim, and as the Statute of Limitations places a time limit of three years in which to make a claim you are advised to consult a personal injury lawyer at the earliest opportunity.