Having been helping people claim for personal injury compensation caused by manhole cover accidents for years, I know better than to walk over them! I know that you’d expect the cover to be safe to cross over; especially when it’s on a public path or highway. But unfortunately, we take on a lot of claims where people have been injured by covers collapsing, flipping, or injuries caused by covers simply not being there.
If you are the unfortunate victim of a manhole cover incident, what can you do about making a claim for personal injury compensation?
What you need to know about responsibility
We’re a firm of personal injury lawyers – not some middleman agency or claims company – so we know what we’re talking about when it comes to experience for these types of claims.
One of the first hurdles is establishing who is actually at fault. Most people would instantly think of the local council or highways authority, and that may be correct. But it could fall within the direct responsibility of a utility company, like a water board or power company.
Knowing this at the start is very difficult. But rather than investigating this yourself, the best thing to do is contact us and we’ll do the work necessary to find out for you. So it may be classed as a bit of a hurdle, but you needn’t worry as it’s a part of our service to look in to this kind of thing.
What you need to know about success for this type of case
Being injured due to a defective or missing manhole cover doesn’t instantly entitle you to a winning claim for personal injury compensation. Depending on who is responsible will depend on what law is applicable for the duty that those responsible have to prevent people being injured by manhole covers. Whichever it falls under, the general thing you need to know is that the duty imposes the following:
- That reasonable steps should be taken to keep the manhole cover adequately maintained. This could be achieved with systems of inspection and maintenance.
- Reasonable steps should be taken where there is notice that there is a hazard – such as a citizen reporting a broken or missing cover. Those responsible should immediately either make safe or repair / replace the cover.
As such, if there is no knowledge of a defect and they have shown that reasonable steps should, and have, been taken, you may find it difficult to win a claim. We must show that they have been negligent in the expected duty of care for you.
What you need to know about the costs for a manhole cover claim
The law changed heavily last year, and the result is that most lawyers will now want to take up to 25% from your claim and may ask you for payment of insurance upfront as well.
Luckily for you, we can still offer our clients 100% compensation agreements for manhole cover claims, and we work on a No Win, No Fee basis as well. So whatever happens, you shouldn’t end up having to pay anything to us or anyone else!
For help and advice, call our free claims helpline on 0800 634 75 75 today.
IMPORTANT: advice on this page is intended to be up-to-date for the 'first published date'.