If your hearing has been damaged by exposure to excessive noise at work, please call our personal injury solicitors for an initial consultation on freephone 0808 175 8000 or start a hearing loss claim online.
Slater and Gordon Lawyers deal with all types of industrial deafness claims, including noise-induced hearing loss, tinnitus and acoustic shock disorder compensation.
Understanding industrial deafness
Industrial deafness is caused by long-term exposure to noise. It can take many years, with sufferers often in their retirement, before significant hearing problems arise. Many people put their problems down to general ageing, rather than making the link with work-related noise exposure many years before. Hearing loss is generally irreversible and hearing aids are usually the only way to address the symptoms of the condition.
Lines of work that can cause hearing problems
Some industries are more likely than others to cause cases of industrial deafness, including:
- Construction and engineering
- Factories and mills
- Stone cutting and quarrying
- Textile industry
- Power stations
Examples of noisy machinery include:
- Jack hammers
- Pneumatic tools
- Weaving machines
Symptoms of industrial deafness
The first symptoms of noise-induced hearing loss include:
- Missing parts of a conversation
- Not being able to hear conversation where there is background noise
- Having to turn the television up loud
- Partners thinking they’re being ignored
If you suspect your hearing is damaged, you should visit your GP and ask for a hearing test as soon as possible. This will be carried out by your GP or by an ear, nose and throat specialist.
Slater and Gordon Lawyers can help if you’re diagnosed with work-related hearing loss. Please call us on freephone 0808 175 8000 for advice on claiming compensation, which can be a great help with everything from medical and travel costs to loss of earnings.
If you find talking on the telephone difficult due to your condition, you can also contact our industrial deafness team online through our contact form and we’ll be happy to get back to you in whatever way suits your needs.
Starting a claim for industrial deafness compensation
Our specialist team of occupational deafness solicitors can give you initial advice to help you understand if you have an industrial deafness claim. We’ll take as many details as possible relating to your medical diagnosis and previous history of exposure to noise at work. We may also be able to help you bring a claim if your employer has gone out of business or if you’ve worked for several employers who’ve negligently exposed you to noise.
A successful hearing loss claim must prove that:
- You’re suffering from industrial deafness and/or tinnitus, confirmed by a report from a medical expert.
- Your condition has been caused by exposure to a particular noise source. For example, a particularly type of machinery which was extremely loud and which you worked in close proximity to on a regular basis.
- At the time of exposure, your employer could reasonably have foreseen that you might suffer from noise-induced hearing loss or an associated condition.
- Your employer was negligent in protecting you from the noise and ensuring your health and safety at work.
If the above can be proven, your previous employer could be found to have been negligent and you may be able to claim compensation for what happened.
Slater and Gordon Lawyers can help you start your claim and offer honest, realistic advice on the amount of compensation you could receive. Please get in touch by calling freephone 0808 175 8000 or use our online contact form.
Acoustic shock compensation claims
Acoustic shock is the term used for hearing-related problems caused by high frequency, high intensity sounds heard through a telephone headset. For example, people who work in UK call centres where the volume on their headsets is turned up too loud can suffer from hearing loss, tinnitus and a range of physiological and psychological health issues.
Not everyone realises that there’s a very real risk of acoustic shock disorder (ASD) happening to people in this kind of employment, but it’s the responsibility of the employer to identify and reduce or eliminate this risk. Employers have a duty of care to protect staff from acoustic shock in the workplace.
If it can be proven that the employer was negligent and you’ve developed ASD as a result, you may be able to claim compensation against the employer’s liability insurance company. To find out more about starting your claim, please contact the expert industrial deafness claims team at Slater and Gordon Lawyers.
Tinnitus compensation claims
Noise-induced tinnitus can be the result of damage caused by excessive noise. It’s characterised by the sound of buzzing in the ears. In bad cases, the buzzing is constant and can even make sleeping difficult. Tinnitus can also have an emotional impact on the sufferer’s life, potentially causing anxiety or depression. The condition can affect quality of life, enjoyment of hobbies and leisure activities such as reading and listening to music. There’s no cure for tinnitus, but very bad cases can be helped by using a ‘masking’ device which lessens the intensity of the buzzing.
If you’re concerned that you may have tinnitus, it’s important to see your GP right away. If you’re diagnosed with the condition and also have a past history of working in very noisy environments, you could have a valid claim for compensation. To find out more and to start your claim, simply get in touch with the industrial deafness claims team at Slater and Gordon Lawyers.
Time limits when making a claim for work related hearing loss
It’s important to note that there are time limits in place when making a claim for work related hearing loss. You must make your claim within three years from the date you first realised your hearing problems may have been caused by exposure to noise from work. If you leave it longer, you may lose the right to make your claim.
How Slater and Gordon Lawyers can help
One of the difficult parts of winning an industrial deafness compensation claim is proving that the hearing problems are not simply related to age. Our hearing can deteriorate as we get older, and this is what leads many people to miss the signs of work-related hearing loss or simply put their problems down to the ageing process.
Slater and Gordon Lawyers has handled a large number of industrial deafness claims on behalf of our clients, with experience spanning decades. Our expertise in this area enables us to successfully prove that hearing problems were caused by negligent exposure to noise in the workplace, not just age. Our skilled, specialist solicitors use medical records, witness statements and documentation relating to work practices - even if the exposure happened many years ago - to provide the evidence needed to win your case.
To take advantage of our specialist expertise, please get in touch with Slater and Gordon Lawyers by making an online enquiry or calling freephone 0808 175 8000 - this line is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week if you need our help.
No Win, No Fee industrial deafness claims
The majority (98%) of our hearing loss claims are funded through a Conditional Fee Agreement. Also known as a No Win, No Fee agreement, this means that you won’t have any fees to pay unless you win your case, so there’s no financial risk if you wish to start an industrial deafness claim. You can go ahead in full confidence that there’ll be no unexpected bills or legal costs to pay further down the line.
Slater and Gordon Lawyers is one of the largest and most respected personal injury law firms in the UK. From our offices across the country, we can provide immediate legal representation and rehabilitation support - drawing on decades of experience in industrial deafness claims of all kinds.
Many of the solicitors at Slater and Gordon Lawyers are members of the Law Society Personal Injury Panel, the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL) and the Pan European Organisation of Personal Injury Lawyers (PEOPIL).