Software specialist secures settlement


A software specialist who sustained an upper limb disorder through excessive use of his keyboard and mouse at work has secured a settlement with support from serious injury specialists at Sintons.

The man saw a pre-existing condition significantly worsened through failure of his employer to act and protect him from the effects of extensive use of his computer equipment, despite warnings from specialists for preventative action to be taken.

In his employment, the man was using his mouse and keyboard for configuring software for up to ten hours a day, five days a week, over the course of several months.

The nature of his work required quick paced work, using dropdown menus, moving the cursor on screen and repeatedly clicking.

Having noticed pain in his right hand and arm, he was referred to a specialist and during time away from work he underwent physiotherapy and steroid injections.

However, whilst he continued to report troublesome symptoms to his employer aware, insufficient action was taken and medical advice ignored.

An occupational therapist assessment made some changes to the man’s workstation, but the physiotherapist and hand specialist advised it was the work itself causing the issues and that time away from work of that type was required.

Despite the employer being aware of this, for several months, the man was tasked with an ‘urgent’ client project, which caused significant pain – a project which subsequently turned out to have been unnecessary.

After complaining, the man was dismissed from his role. He turned to serious injury specialists at Sintons – which has a national reputation for its personal injury work – for support in pursuing a claim against his former employer.

David Knipe, associate in Sintons’ serious injury team, established that the employer did not undertake work or occupational assessments before the development of the claimant’s symptoms, and asked him to undertake work directly against the advice of the treating consultants of which they were aware.

Medical examinations revealed the claimant had suffered an aggravation of pre-existing mild DeQuervain’ s Disease, which experts acknowledged had been made more severe by the workplace incident and could disadvantage the man in the labour market.

The claimant secured a settlement which will enable him to move on with his life, and for which he praised Sintons for securing for him.

“David Knipe at Sintons provided excellent advice at all stages,” said the claimant.

“He took on board my concerns, carefully explained strategy and possible outcomes and cautioned that a personal injury claim was not guaranteed to succeed and would take time.

“At all times I felt I was in the best hands. Not all firms would have taken on my case, but Sintons did and secured a very satisfactory outcome. I would have no hesitation in recommending them.”

David Knipe, who has over 20 years’ experience of personal injury litigation, said: “Despite warnings that greater support was needed to safeguard our client against his developing symptoms, he was left wholly unprotected and indeed was told to work when medical advice advised against it.”

“This is unacceptable and totally against the duty of care an employer should provide. We are very pleased to be able to support our client in making a stand against the conditions he was forced to work in.

“While this may not be a ‘traditional’ workplace injury, at Sintons, we have specialism in a full spectrum of personal injury cases. We have a long and successful track record in supporting people who have sustained work-related upper limb disorders and injury, such as in this case, and fight hard for the best possible outcome for the client in each bespoke case and circumstance.

“We are very pleased to have supported our client in this matter and wish him the very best for the future.”

David Knipe is an Associate in the Claimant Personal Injury team at Sintons in Newcastle upon Tyne.  Contact him at david.knipe@sintons.co.uk or on 0191 226 7926.


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