What difficulties are faced when running a Noise Induced Hearing Loss claim??
19 May 2017
A Noise Induced Hearing Loss claim is complex in nature. Many Claimants wonder what these claims entail? Why do these cases not reach conclusion within a few months? Why do I have to be examined by an ENT? Why do you need to instruct Acoustic Engineers? We hope the below clarifies some of these questions for you:
There are three limbs which a Claimant needs to succeed upon in the hope of obtaining a Noise Induced Hearing Loss settlement:
- Breach- It must be shown that the Defendant in question actually exposed you the Claimant to excessive noise levels in accordance with the regulatory Law in place at that specific time. This is usually proven within disclosure such as noise surveys or within an Acoustic Engineers report. The difficulties we face in proving breach is that Acoustic Engineers are currently reporting 13-16 months ahead, this adds a 16 month delay to your claim! Unfortunately this is entirely unavoidable, this evidence must be obtained and as frustrating as it can be for all parties, we can only be patient, these claims do take a long time to reach conclusion. However the fact that a company was excessively noisy is not enough to prove your claim, you must be able to prove that you have actually suffered an injury too!
- Causation- It must be shown that you have suffered Noise Induced Hearing Loss. An audiogram will need to be conducted and this audiogram will show what your hearing levels are and how much loss has been suffered. An ENT specialist will draw a conclusion by way of a medical report which will be the crux of the medical evidence you rely upon in your claim. However this is not as simple as looking at the hearing levels you have, there are a multitude of calculations and idiopathic factors that are often considered, on top of the age related hearing loss you will already have to a degree depending on your current age. A medical expert will provide you with a positive or a negative diagnosis. Only with a positive diagnosis of Noise Induced Hearing Loss may you proceed with a claim for Noise Induced Hearing Loss. The difficulties we face here are further delays once again. Very often the Defendant will request that they also obtain their own medical evidence resulting in a Claimant being seen once again and the delays in obtaining the Defendants medical report can add significant time to a claim. Once received the two experts are then usually open to questions, as you can see this can add more delay to your claim.
- Limitation- Limitation is a rule in statute. You as the Claimant have three years to bring your claim for the date you knew or ought to have known that your Noise Induced Hearing Loss is due to your previous noise exposure. It is imperative that you do act fast in bringing your claim, unfortunately we face great difficulties with this aspect of the claims. Very often Claimants find themselves out of time to bring a claim because they went to their GP 10 years ago and was told then that they may have Noise Induced Hearing Loss and then attempt to bring their claim out of time 10 years later.
The above just touches the surface on the complexity of these cases. As specialists in this field of Noise Induced Hearing Loss we ensure we run your cases proactively addressing any difficulties/challenges in a timely manner to ensure that you are in the know at all times and that we are working towards obtaining a successful Noise Induced Hearing Loss settlement. Ring 01254297130 to make your claim today.