Making an industrial disease claim for hand arm vibration syndrome (HAVS)
Thompsons Solicitors’ personal injury lawyers have decades of experience supporting clients who have suffered a range of industrial diseases and injuries, including asbestos diseases, skin diseases, respiratory and lung diseases, occupational cancer and vibration injuries.
Thompsons Solicitors’ industrial disease lawyers regularly help people across the UK to secure maximum compensation in personal injury claims for a hand arm vibration syndrome (HAVS). To find out more about how they can help you too, read our frequently asked questions below.
1. What is hand arm vibration syndrome?
Hand arm vibration syndrome, often shortened to HAVS, is an industrial injury that can cause severe pain and potentially long-lasting damage to a person’s fingers and hands. It used to be known as Vibration White Finger (VWF), owing to one of the main symptoms of the condition, however it was changed to HAVS to reflect the other symptoms it can cause.
2. What causes hand arm vibration syndrome?
Hand arm vibration syndrome mostly affects those who operate vibrating power tools or machinery regularly, or for long periods of time – such as pneumatic drills, sanders, chainsaws, and hedge trimmers. The repetitive nature of such machinery can cause damage to a person’s nerves, muscles, joints and blood vessels.
3. What are the symptoms of hand arm vibration syndrome?
If you regularly use vibrating tools and machinery and start to suffer any of the following symptoms, you should speak to your GP as soon as possible:
- A whitening of the skin on your fingers
- A cold sensation in your fingers
- Numbness in your fingertips
- Tingling in your fingers
Symptoms may not develop immediately after using vibrating machinery, but can be long-lasting and painful. Hand arm vibration syndrome can make lifting objects, as well as more precise finger movements, such as writing, difficult. If symptoms are ignored, the condition can be disabling.
4. How can Thompsons Solicitors help me to make an industrial disease claim for hand arm vibration syndrome?
Thompsons Solicitors has supported clients who have suffered hand arm vibration syndrome since the 1970s, from when cases run by Thompsons established a proven link between vibrating tools and the syndrome, forcing employers to protect their staff from the dangers of repetitive use. Many of those who have had successful personal injury claims for compensation with the help of Thompsons Solicitors were part of the coal mining industry, which involved daily use of vibrating machinery, but also other manual workers, such as builders, dock and roadside workers.
Thompsons Solicitors’ vibration injury lawyers will use the decades of expertise described above to develop a solid case for vibration injury compensation while gathering evidence about your working conditions and sourcing expert medical reports to support your claim.
Contact our personal injury lawyers on 0800 0 224 224 for more information on how we can help you to make a vibration injury compensation claim with a firm of lawyers you can trust.
5. How can I fund a vibration injury compensation claim?
Thompsons Solicitors will provide advice on the options available for funding a vibration injury compensation claim. Trade union members will often benefit from free legal advice and representation as part of their union scheme – see our dedicated trade union website for more information. If you are not a member of a trade union and would like to make a personal injury compensation claim for your hand arm vibration syndrome, one of the most common options we recommend is a conditional fee agreement, more commonly known as a ‘no win, no fee’ claim.
Thompsons Solicitors’ personal injury lawyers will only begin the personal injury claims process if they feel there is a high chance of success for you. But, if your case should be unsuccessful, having a conditional fee agreement in place means you won’t have to pay anything.
More information on ways to pay can be found on our Fees and Payment page.
6. Can I make a personal injury claim for hand arm vibration syndrome through my trade union?
If you are a member of a trade union, it is likely you will be able to receive free legal support from Thompsons Solicitors as part of your membership package. If your case is successful, you will also receive 100 per cent of your compensation, with no deductions for legal fees. Contact Thompsons Solicitors on 0800 0 224 224 to find out more.
7. How much money will I receive as personal injury compensation for my hand arm vibration syndrome?
Vibration injury claims vary in severity and the exact amount of compensation you could expert to be awarded depends on a variety of factors, including the long-term effects of the injury, the severity of the pain, and whether it has affected your ability to work. The damages awarded for a vibration injury claim can range from several thousand pounds through to over one hundred thousand pounds.
Whatever the situation, Thompsons Solicitors will endeavour to secure the largest amount of compensation possible for you in the shortest time and will keep you up-to-date with your case’s progress.
To start a claim or for more advice on the claims process, call us on 0800 0 224 224.