It goes without saying that a serious accident at work will have enormous implications. First and foremost will be the human aspect – the impact on the injured person, their family and colleagues. At the same time, the business is likely to find itself in the midst of a criminal investigation, possibly fielding enquiries from the press.
A criminal prosecution may well follow with the threat of hefty court fines, legal costs, damage to reputation and possible prison sentences hanging over senior management.
Over the years, our health and safety solicitors have acted for businesses, directors, health and safety advisers, landlords, charities and insurers on a wide range of health and safety issues.
Following an accident, our health and safety experts can provide legal advice to ensure you are best placed to deal with a criminal investigation by the Health and Safety Executive or a local authority or to respond to a civil claim.
Our specialist health and safety solicitors can provide support by:
- Assisting with the gathering of evidence, including expert evidence
- Advising on whether an accident is reportable under the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013
- Advising on the powers of health and safety inspectors
- Advising and representing you following the service of a notice of contravention, improvement or prohibition notice
- Advising on your options if you or your business are invited to an interview under caution (PACE interview). This is an important stage of an investigation, as the regulator will suspect that you have committed an offence and answers you give under caution may influence how the regulator decides to proceed in relation to enforcement action and be used against you in any subsequent prosecution. We can represent you at an interview under caution or advise in relation to providing written answers under caution, depending on the circumstances
- Liaising with the regulator. This may include putting forward arguments that it is not in the public interest to prosecute or that an alternative to prosecution (such as a simple caution) would be more appropriate in the circumstances of the case
- Advising on potential penalties following a prosecution including ancillary orders such as director disqualification
- Representing you at the Magistrates’ Court or Crown Court
So that we can help you achieve the best possible outcome, we recommend that you contact us as soon as possible after an incident, if you become aware of an investigation or receive an enforcement notice or court summons.
We can also assist by providing legal compliance advice to help ensure your business stays on the right side of the law.
Why choose Trethowans?
Our health and safety solicitors have a wealth of knowledge in this area and are experienced in liaising with regulators and dealing with regulatory disputes.
Sarah Wheadon, who heads up our Regulatory team has been recognised by the Chambers & Partners legal directory for her knowledge of health and safety law and is a member of the Health and Safety Lawyers Association.
For more information about how we can help you, please contact our health and safety solicitors by calling 0800 2800 421 or using our contact form above.