The UK is not in the grips of a US-style compensation culture, according a TUC report. It found that nine out of every 10 workers injured or made ill by their jobs never receive a penny in compensation.
The Compensation Myth report said the number of civil compensation cases involving claims against employers has fallen every year for the past five years.
The UK also pays out much less money in compensation cases, as a proportion of its gross domestic product, than any other European country except Denmark, and the cost of compensation payouts has remained the same, in real terms, since 1999, the report found.
The TUC said only 80,000 of the more than 850,000 people who are the victims of work-related accidents or injuries each year, ever receive any kind of payout from their employer or the state. This dispells the myth that UK workers are all too ready to put in a compensation claim if they fall ill or are slightly injured.
TUC general secretary, Brendan Barber, said: “All the time we hear that the UK is in the grip of a runaway compensation culture and that we are moving ever closer to a US-style ‘sue first, ask questions later’ system.
“The harsh reality for thousands of ill and injured workers is very different with most getting little if anything when things go wrong at work as a result of their employers’ negligence.”
A more detailed analysis of the TUC report will be published in our In-depth section on Tuesday 2 August.