Broken Rib Compensation in the UK

By Cat Reeves. Last Updated 17th May 2023. Welcome to our guide on claiming broken rib compensation. Have you been involved in an accident caused by the negligence of a third party? Did this third party owe you a duty of care? Have you sustained a broken rib as a result? If so, you could be eligible to claim compensation.

Rib injuries can be severely detrimental to your health. Our ribs act as a protectant for our heart and lungs. If your rib is fractured and the bones move out of alignment, the broken bone could cause damage to your internal organs. This can cause a great deal of pain and discomfort and, in some cases, may even be fatal.  

In this guide, we will look at a number of different kinds of accidents that could cause you to break your rib. In addition, we will examine the duty of care owed to you in a number of different scenarios. Understanding who breached their duty of care to you, resulting in injury, is essential in making a personal injury claim as it dictates who the claim will be made against.

Get In Touch With Our Team 

Our team of advisers would be happy to have a chat with you about your situation to assess what help they can offer you. If you have a valid case, they can connect you with a personal injury lawyer from our panel. They can also estimate how much broken rib compensation you may be able to claim.

You can get in touch with our friendly team of advisers by:

  • Calling them on 020 3870 4868. Our team of advisers are available 24/7 to offer you free legal advice about your situation.
  • Filling in our online claims form. An adviser will get back to you at your earliest convenience.
  • Chatting with an adviser via our live chat pop-up box to receive an immediate response. 

Services And Information

  1. Everything You Need To Know About Broken Rib Compensation Claims
  2. What Is A Broken Rib Injury?
  3. What Accidents Could Cause A Broken Rib?
  4. Types Of Fractured Or Broken Rib Injuries
  5. Broken And Fractured Rib Injury Claims
  6. Fractured Rib Causing Chest Injuries And Organ Damage
  7. Broken Rib Compensation Claim Calculator
  8. Broken Ribs Caused By A Trip Or Fall
  9. Fractured Rib Accidents In A Public Place
  10. Fractured And Broken Ribs Caused By Car Accidents
  11. Broken And Fractured Ribs In the Workplace
  12. Broken Rib Compensation Claims For A Child
  13. I Suffered A Broken Rib, What Should I Do?
  14. Claim Broken Rib Compensation On A No Win No Fee Basis
  15. Related Services And Guides
  16. Broken Rib Compensation FAQs

Everything You Need To Know About Broken Rib Compensation Claims

Firstly, this article will explain what a broken rib injury is. We will examine the symptoms, treatment and recovery process of an injury of this nature. 

Furthermore, the guide will explore what kinds of accidents might result in broken ribs. We’ll also look at the duty of care owed to you in different circumstances and how this can be reached. 

Moreover, the article will talk about broken ribs caused by a trip or fall and fractured rib accidents in a public place. Next, there will be sections looking at fractured and broken ribs in a car accident and an accident at work.

Additionally, there will be an explanation about the process of making a broken rib compensation claim for a child. The guide will also discuss No Win No Fee agreements.

Following on from this, there will be a related guide section containing some similar guides to ensure you leave this article with as much information and guidance as possible. Finally, there will be a frequently asked questions section to answer some common queries about personal injury claims

What Is A Broken Rib Injury?

Fractures or breaks to the ribs can happen in a number of ways. However, they are usually caused by blunt trauma such as a fall or a blow to the chest.

Symptoms of a broken rib can include:

  • Pain in the chest area, particularly when breathing
  • Swelling or tenderness
  • Bruising on the skin (although this doesn’t always occur)
  • Feeling or hearing a crack

If your rib injury was caused by a serious accident, like a car accident, you should go to A&E or call 999. You should also do this if you:

  • Are short of breath, and it is getting worse
  • Have chest pain that is getting worse
  • Are coughing up blood
  • Have stomach or shoulder pain

This could be a sign that your broken rib has damaged one of your internal organs.

How Long Do I Have To Claim Broken Rib Compensation?

You may be wondering how long you have to start a claim for broken rib compensation. Under the Limitation Act 1980, you will have three years to start a claim from the date of your accident.

However, there are some exceptions to this rule. For example, the time limit is suspended indefinitely for those who lack the mental capacity to make a claim for themselves. During this time, a court-appointed litigation friend could make a claim on their behalf. Should they regain this mental capacity, they will have three years to start a claim if one has not already been made.

The time limit is paused for claimants under the age of eighteen. Before their 18th birthday, a litigation friend could claim on their behalf. If a claim has not been made by their 18th birthday, they will have three years to start one.

To find out if you are within the relevant time limit to start are claim, or to learn more about the symptoms and signs of a broken rib, contact our team today.

What Accidents Could Cause A Broken Rib?

Usually, broken rib injuries are caused by direct impact. Some examples of accidents that could cause a rib fracture are:

  • Car accidents: Road traffic accidents can cause broken rib injuries. This could be the case if you’re involved in a head-on collision that crushes the front of your car. This could cause an impact between the steering wheel and your chest, resulting in a broken rib. 
  • Falls from a height: Falling from a height could cause you to break your rib if your torso collides with the floor at high speed. You may be at risk of breaking your rib at work if you work on ladders, for instance. 
  • Contact sports: Sports such as football or rugby can cause rib fractures if a player runs directly into another player’s torso. The quick, direct impact can cause a crushing injury to the ribs.

Please note that these are just some examples of accidents that could cause a broken rib, and not all of them will be the result of negligence for which you’re able to claim. However, if you’ve broken your rib in a way that isn’t listed above but you believe it resulted from a breach of duty of care, get in touch with our team to find out more about claiming.  

Types Of Fractured Or Broken Rib Injuries

There are a number of different ways that the rib can be fractured, and some of them pose a greater risk of further complications than others.

A hairline fracture is where the bone has cracked but not split in two. While this can cause the injured person pain, it may be less likely than other types of fractures to cause damage to the internal organs.

A non-displaced fracture is where the bone has cracked in two, but the two parts of the bone are still together. This could pose a risk of internal injury if the two pieces of bone were to move apart.

With a displaced fracture, the two parts of the bone are no longer aligned with one another. In a break of this kind, there is a risk of one of the broken ends of the bone piercing the lung, heart, spleen or liver. This could cause serious injury or even death.

Broken And Fractured Rib Injury Claims

When you fracture your rib, it can have a detrimental effect on your quality of life. For instance, it can cause you a great deal of pain, as the ribs are constantly moving when we breathe.

Because of this, you may need to take some time off work if the pain is so severe that you’re unable to do your role. If your job requires a high level of activity, then you will likely need to be off work while you recover.

Sometimes, the pain in your chest caused by a broken rib can make coughing difficult. However, if you refrain from coughing because of the pain, this can cause mucus to build up in your lungs which may lead to a chest infection.

Older people may be more likely to break their ribs because of osteoporosis, which is a condition that weakens bones and makes them more fragile with age. However, people of any age can break their ribs. And if you’ve fractured your rib because of the negligence of a third party, you may be owed compensation. Contact our team for more information.

Fractured Rib Causing Chest Injuries And Organ Damage

The ribs protect important organs, such as the lungs and heart. Broken rib injuries can cause other complications, such as:

  • Pneumothorax: This is when altering pressure in the chest causes a collapsed lung. A broken rib puncturing the chest or tearing the lung can cause this. It can cause breathing difficulties, chest pain, and coughing up blood.
  • Cardiac and blood vessel injury: This could be an injury to the blood vessel that services the heart (coronary artery) or the main artery tearing (aorta).
  • Splenic rupture: The spleen is situated on the left side of the abdomen. When the outer part of the spleen rips, the spleen bleeds into the cavity of the abdomen. 

Your heart and lungs are essential to your health and wellbeing. Because of this, damage to them caused by a broken rib can be fatal.

If you’ve suffered further complications because of a broken rib caused by third party negligence, then you may be entitled to compensation. Speak to one of our advisors today to see how much you could be owed.

Broken Rib Compensation Claim Calculator

Many websites offer personal injury compensation calculators so you can see how much your claim might be valued at. These can offer some useful guidance but may not collect the scope of information needed to give an accurate valuation. Instead, we’ve included a personal injury claim table below to illustrate how much some injuries may be valued. 

The figures in this table are based on guidelines provided by the Judicial College. As a result, they aren’t guaranteed compensation figures, and the amount you receive could vary. 

Injury: Severity:

Notes: Compensation:
Mental Anguish Severe A fear of impending death. £4,670

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Severe Unable to live or work at the same level as they did pre-trauma. £59,860 to £100,670
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Moderate The injured person will have largely recovered with residual effects not being grossly disabling. £8,180 to £23,150
Chest Injuries Total removal of one lung Removal of one lung and severe heart damage. Severe pain and suffering and serious scarring. £100,670 to £150,110
Chest Injuries Some continuing disability Damage to chest and lung £31,310 to £54,830
Chest Injuries Simple A relatively simple injury (e.g. a single penetrating wound) which causes some permanent damage to lung tissue but no significant effect on function. £12,590 to £17,960

Special Damages For A Broken Rib Claim

Special damages are designed to cover any financial losses you have suffered due to your broken rib injury. Any out-of-pocket expenses or losses inflicted by your injuries may be included under this head of claim on the basis that you can provide evidence of this harm.

Examples of special damages that might be included in a personal injury compensation claim include:

  • A loss of earnings caused by not being able to work because of your injuries. Collect your pay slips as evidence of this loss.
  • Specialist equipment you might need to accommodate your injuries, such as a walking frame or walking stick. Retain receipts of any equipment you buy.
  • Prescription fees if you need medication to alleviate signs of a broken rib. An invoice or receipt of these fees can be used as evidence.

Get in touch if you want to know what to do with a broken rib claim. A specialist injury lawyer from our panel can consider any special damages you might be awarded to work out a more accurate estimate of your personal injury claim.

Broken Ribs Caused By A Trip Or Fall

Slip, trip, and fall accidents can cause someone to suffer a broken rib. You may be more likely to break your rib if you fall from a height, as this will result in a greater impact than falling from a standing position.

If the accident occurs in a public place, such as a supermarket, the person in control of the space could be liable according to the Occupier’s Liability Act 1957 (OLA). This would only happen if the occupier or owner breached their duty of care, for example, if they didn’t put a wet floor sign near a spillage and you slipped and broke your rib.

Slip, tripping, or falling can cause a broken rib injury due to the impact that occurs when the rib hits the floor. Any accident that causes the ribs to suffer high impact trauma can result in a fracture or breaking of the ribs. 

Fractured Rib Accidents In A Public Place

The term ‘public place’ encompasses any place that is open to the public. The person in control of a public space (known as the “occupier” in the OLA) has a duty of care to those who use the space. They should take all reasonably practicable steps to ensure their safety and wellbeing. If you suffer a broken rib because of the negligence of the occupier of a public place, you could make a public place compensation claim against the occupier of that place. 

For instance, you may be shopping at a bookshop when one of the shelves comes loose from the wall, falling on you. The impact of a heavy bookcase could cause your rib to fracture. If you can show that negligence on the part of the person in control of the shop caused this accident, then you may be able to claim.

Fractured And Broken Ribs Caused By Car Accidents

You could make a car accident claim if you’ve suffered a broken rib as the result of a car accident.

All road users owe a duty of care to one another to ensure the safety of everyone on the road. There are a number of things that road users are expected to do; for example, they should keep their full concentration on the road at all times. They should also abide by the speed limit and follow instructions found on road signs and markings. The full duty of care owed by road users to one another is outlined in the Highway Code

You might suffer a broken rib in a car accident if, for instance, a car crashes into the back of you and, as a result, your torso collides with the steering wheel. Because the other driver failed to maintain a safe stopping distance, they would generally be at fault for the accident, and you may be able to make a claim

Broken And Fractured Ribs In the Workplace

Your employer has a duty of care towards you while you’re working. This is outlined in the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974. Your employer needs to take all reasonably practicable steps to ensure your safety while at work. Failure to do this could result in the injured person making a workplace personal injury claim.

For instance, your employer has a responsibility to make sure that all equipment you’re given to carry out your role is safe and well-maintained. If you were to fall from a faulty ladder at work, you might fracture your rib as a result. Provided you can show that your injury was caused because your employer failed to check that the ladder was safe, then you may be able to claim.

If you’ve suffered a broken rib as a result of employer negligence, you could be owed compensation for your injuries. Get in touch with our team to find out more about how you could claim.

Broken Rib Compensation Claims For A Child

 While in school, your child is owed a duty of care by the staff and the operator or controlling entity of the school. Below are some of the ways the duty of care towards a child can be neglected. 

  • If the school’s staff don’t take steps to protect and safeguard the children, they’re breaching their duty of care. Their negligence could cause a child to have an accident that causes an injury. For instance, a child could fall down the stairs at school because the handrail had not been secured correctly to the wall. 
  • A child could injure themself by falling off a damaged climbing frame and break a rib. If you can prove that the climbing frame was poorly maintained, you may be able to claim on your child’s behalf.

I Suffered A Broken Rib, What Should I Do?

If you’ve suffered a broken rib, the first thing you should do is seek immediate medical attention. This ensures that you receive treatment. Moreover, you can use your medical report to prove the severity of your injuries.

Next, you should collect as much evidence as possible to prove that the accident wasn’t your fault. For example, CCTV footage, photos of your injuries, and witness details. You should also collect evidence that you suffered financial loss, such as loss of earnings, due to your injuries.

Finally, it’s recommended that you contact a personal injury lawyer to help work on your personal injury claim. Some people decide to file a personal injury claim alone, but it can be a daunting process. Personal injury lawyers are experienced in helping claimants receive the most compensation they can.

You may recognise the benefits of legal representation but be worried about the costs associated with this. If so, read on to our next section about No Win No Fee agreements. 

Claim Broken Rib Compensation On A No Win No Fee Basis 

A No Win No Fee agreement is a contract between you and your lawyer stating that you don’t have to pay any of your solicitor’s fees if your case fails. It means you don’t need to pay them anything before your claim begins or while it’s ongoing. 

If your case loses, you’re not obligated to pay anything to your solicitor. If your case succeeds, your personal injury solicitor will deduct a small, capped percentage from your compensation. They will discuss the value of this success fee with you beforehand. 

All the solicitors on our panel can offer representation on a No Win No Fee basis, so why not get in touch today? You can contact our team of advisers today by:

  • Giving them a call on 020 3870 4868
  • Chatting with one of our advisers through our live pop-up box for an instant reply.
  • Filling in our online claims form to receive a response at whatever time best suits you. 

Related Services And Guides

Agency Worker Injury Claims Guide For Compensation – Are you an agency worker who’s suffered injuries due to an accident that wasn’t your fault? Our guide explains how you can make a personal injury claim.

What Happens If You Don’t Report An Accident At Work? – If you’ve suffered an accident at work but not reported it, our article explores how you can make a personal injury claim.

How To Make A Gym Injury Compensation Claim? – Have you sustained injuries from an accident in the gym due to someone else’s negligence/? Our guide discusses how you can receive compensation for your injuries. 

Broken or Bruised Ribs – If you suspect you may have a broken rib injury, this NHS guide includes the signs you may experience and what you can do to help. 

Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) – If you’re forced to take time off work because of an injury, you may be eligible to claim SSP. This government guide could offer more information.

How do I know if I’ve Broken a Bone? – If you’re worried you may have broken a bone, this NHS article shows the signs, treatment and recovery process of a bone fracture. 

Broken Rib Compensation FAQs 

How much compensation can you get for broken ribs?

The amount of compensation you can receive for broken ribs is dependent on the circumstances of the accident and the severity of the injury. You can contact our team of advisers today to receive an assessment on how much broken rib compensation you could receive.

What happens if you leave a broken rib untreated?

If you don’t seek medical attention for a broken rib, it can cause serious implications. For instance, if the fracture is displaced, then the broken end of the bone is at risk of piercing an internal organ, such as the heart or lungs. 

How long should you be off work with broken ribs?

The majority of fractured ribs heal within 6 weeks; however, more complicated injuries may take longer to heal. Always follow your doctor’s advice about how soon to restart your normal activities. 

Thank you for reading our guide to broken rib compensation. 

Guide by HL

Checked by NC