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The Defence Police Federation & Thompsons Scotland offer a new range of services.
Services 
Work Related Accidents and Diseases  |  Road Traffic Accidents  |  Family Law  |  Criminal Law  |  Non Work Related Accidents & Diseases  |  Property, Mortgage & Estate Agency  |  Free Wills, Trust & Executry  |  Independent Financial Advice  |  Benefits & Consumer Law  |  Human Rights

Benefits and Consumer Law

A change in income into a household either temporary or permanent can have a radical effect on other members of the family. There are also consumer matters on which they may need advice.

These areas of law could be:-
  • Income Support
  • Disability Living Allowance
  • Incapacity Benefit
  • Consumer Law Problems
  • Housing Benefit
  • The member will be given full free initial legal advice in these areas by telephone or where practicable interview.

HEALTH & SAFETY

The Law

Health and Safety Laws are fundamental to ensuring you work in safe environments. However, whilst laws exist to protect you, they are only beneficial if they are implemented by your employers. You, along with your union representatives have a role to play in ensuring you work in a safe environment.

If you have an accident, your must report it. If you have a near miss, you must report it. If work equipment or a workplace is unsafe, you must report the problem. Along with your union rep, you should ensure that action has been taken to rectify problems and appropriate risk assessments are done. Risk assessments are mandatory under the Management of Health & Safety at Work Regulations 1999.

There is a wealth of regulation which your employers must adhere to ensure that you are kept safe whilst at work. The fundamental regulations are known as the six pack regulations:-
  • The Management of Health & Safety at Work Regulations 1999
  • Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992
  • Display Screen Equipment (DSE) Regulations 1992
  • Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992
  • Provision and use of Work Equipment Regulations 1992 & 1998
  • Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Regulations 1992
  • The Work at Height Regulations 2005
In January 1992, these six Regulations (the first noted above) on Health and Safety at Work were introduced. You will see from the dates of them that some have been amended. Most of the requirements of these Regulations were not new, they simply spelled out in more detail what a responsible employer should already have been doing to comply with the requirements of the 1974 Health and Safety at Work Act.

Some regulations will apply to you more than others.

The level of proof required for the above regulations differs; in some, such as the Provision and use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998, strict liability applies meaning that you must only prove that the work equipment was faulty and that you were injured by that fault to be successful in a claim for compensation. However, some cases are more difficult to prove for example, those brought under some sections of the Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992 when a person requires to show that an employer did not do what was reasonably required of them in order to have a successful claim.

Claims can also be pursued alleging a breach of a common law duty which is a legal precedent created by judges. All arguments are qualified by what is reasonable when claims are pursued on this basis.

Further, vicarious liability can be alleged when the employer is held liable for the negligent actions of an employee. The negligent employee must however have been acting in the course of their employment.

Your Health & Safety Representatives

The Safety Representatives and Safety Committee Regulations 1977 gives health and safety reps wide ranging powers to investigate accidents. In doing what we suggest above, you can assist your rep in both investigating and preventing accident. Your rep can regularly review accident books and explore accidents or near misses with members.

Union appointed safety reps have a statutory right to inspect and take copies of documents relevant to their function under regulation 7 of the 1997 Regulations. So if your rep can show that there is good reason you require the information, such as monitoring of accident levels, they are entitled to it. Your rep can also ask for the minutes from safety meetings; that can assist in seeing whether employers were aware of an ongoing problem.

Accidents at work and pursing a claim for compensation

Thompsons Solicitors works with your union to achieve safer workplaces. However, accidents may still happen as there always room for improvement even in workplaces which have high levels of safety. One of the most successful ways to ensure that workplaces are made is to pursue a claim for compensation when you are injured at work.

If you involved in an accident at work, you should report this to your union and contact Thompsons for advice. Your should ensure that accident and RIDDOR forms are completed and, if possible, you or your union rep should take photographs of the area, draft a sketch of the layout and get details of witnesses. By preserve evidence, you will make a difference.

Evidence is vital in any claim for compensation. There is no automatic right to compensation when a person is injured. They must be able to prove by way of evidence that they have been injured as a direct result of their employer’s negligence – or indeed whatever other party they consider is responsible.

Accident report forms must be completed correctly and the injured person should complete or at very least check them before signing. If the details on that do not match what the member claims happened, it is difficult to prove that the accident happened in the way in which we claim it was. If you are not happy with the report, do not sign it.

As we work closely with your trade union, Thompsons will ensure that you receive 100% of your compensation if your claim is successful.

Employment Law

Employment law exists to safeguard your rights at work. It is the DPF's objective to ensure that you benefit from the legal rights which exist and to offer you practical advice and assistance when these rights are being threatened. If you have a problem with the Terms & Conditions and/or security of employment you should contact the Northern Regional Secretary.

Police Complaints and Misconduct Procedures

Any member, who is the subject of a Police Complaint or the Misconduct Procedure, should obtain a Legal and Discipline pro forma (L.A.D. Form) from their Branch Secretary, who will progress it, once fully completed, to the Regional Secretary for his action.

 

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