Industrial deafness compensation is a legal protection and precaution provided by the employers of several companies, for their workers who work in extremely noisy conditions for a prolonged period of time. According to the law, employers are also supposed to provide safety measures and hearing protectors to their employees, failing which they can even be prosecuted by the law.
Once an employee has been proved to be suffering from a total or even partial hearing loss, due to his work conditions, by an authorised medical practitioner, the employer is liable to provide him with a stipulated amount of industrial deafness compensation, depending on the severity and type of deafness suffered.
However, this system is found to be misused in a number of places across the world, like the UK. According to the Association of British Insurers (ABI), the industrial deafness compensation culture in the UK, has come to convey a wrong message to thousands of people, that anyone can get compensation for hearing issues, and lawyers and claimants have started focusing on more lucrative and profitable claims. This means that people have started seeing the fair system of industrial deafness compensation as a means to earn profit, and not as a means of compensation.
Since 2012, more than about 200,000 claims were registered for the more lucrative NIHL, but only a very small margin of them, that is, about 20% were eligible for compensation. The vast majority of them lacked any kind of proper evidence or poor quality evidence to link the hearing loss suffered by the claimant to his workplace.
While this by itself is a huge burden for the officials, it also slows down the compensation for the genuine employees too.
In order for a person to claim industrial deafness compensation, an employee needs to have the following eligibilities:
– An evidence of employment
– A medical proof provided by an authorized audiologist, after an audiology test that clearly shows that the NIHL was due to excessive exposure to high levels of noise at his workplace
An employee also needs to have submitted the claim, with all the above required evidence within three years of knowing about his hearing loss too.
Because of the increasing number of claims, the ABI is taking some good measures to keep false claimants at bay. It includes fixation of legal fees and a number of amendments to the current claims portal. Once these precautionary measures are in place, people would get the idea that industrial deafness compensation amounts a means to protect the workers and not a profit earning means.