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Hearing Loss Claims and Compensation for Deafness

 

The ears are very delicate and sensitive, and are susceptible to hearing loss due to risks in the workplace or in everyday life. Hearing loss can happen gradually after prolonged exposure to loud noises, or can occur suddenly as a result of a singular loud noise, such asan explosion. No matter which way you lose your hearing, it can have a detrimental impact on your life.

It can be incredibly frustrating to live with hearing loss or impairment as it makes it difficult to communicate with people, which can affect your confidence and mental wellbeing. Many people with impaired hearing struggle in places with background noise, such as restaurants and parties, so it can be difficult to maintain a social life, potentially leading to feelings of isolation, anxiety, or depression.

Whether your hearing loss was caused by an accident that wasn’t your fault, or your employer’s negligence, you may be able to claim compensation.

Here at Lanyon Bowdler we have a great deal of experience helping people in your situation to take legal action and receive a substantial amount of money to help them on their journey to recovery.

What Are The Different Types Of Hearing Loss?

There are three different types of hearing loss that can occur, including:

  • Conductive - This involves the outer or middle ear, and is often treatable, so in some cases it may be temporary hearing loss.
  • Sensorineural - This involves the inner ear or central auditory system, causing permanent hearing loss which is not usually treatable medically.
  • Mixed - This is a combination of both conductive and sensorineural hearing loss.

Hearing loss can develop progressively over several years, rapidly within a few months, or suddenly within a few days. Sudden hearing loss is considered a medical emergency for which urgent medical attention should be sought. The earlier hearing loss is diagnosed and treated, the better the prognosis in many cases.

What Are The Symptoms Of Hearing Loss?

If your hearing loss comes on rapidly or suddenly it can be easier to notice, however, when it comes on gradually, especially after prolonged exposure to loud noises, it can often be difficult to identify at first. Some of the signs and symptoms to look out for include:

  • Difficulty hearing in one or both ears
  • Complete lack of hearing in one or both ears
  • Difficulty following a conversation, especially with background noise
  • Turning the TV or radio up very high in order to hear it
  • Struggling to follow a conversation on the phone
  • Missing words in a conversation when others can hear them clearly
  • Regularly hearing buzzing, roaring, whistling, hissing, or ringing noises
  • Struggling to hear certain frequencies of sound
  • Regularly having to ask people to repeat themselves or speak more clearly
  • Feeling tired and stressed from always having to concentrate when listening
  • Feeling like you can hear better from one ear over the other

If you have noticed any of these symptoms, particularly after being involved in an accident such as a road traffic collision, or after working in a loud environment for an extended period of time, it is important to see your doctor as soon as possible in order to receive treatment.

What Type Of Injury Can Cause Hearing Loss?

Whether you’re in the workplace or out in public, accidents can and do happen, often due to someone else’s negligence. An accident can lead to injuries ranging from minor and temporary, to more severe and permanent. One of the injuries most commonly reported after a no-fault accident is hearing loss, which is usually caused in one of the following ways:

  • Head trauma - Receiving any sort of blow to the head, whether it is due to a road traffic accident, contact sport, a trip or fall, or an assault, is usually bad news. The skull protects the brain from minor impacts, but a forceful blow that jostles the brain will often result in concussion, and can lead to hearing loss. This could be due to the area of the brain responsible for hearing and speech becoming damaged, or through serious damage to the ears. Symptoms such as tinnitus or problems with balance are often a good sign that there is damage to the three tiny bones in the middle ear.
  • Whiplash - This is when the head is whipped violently back and forth, for example during the impact of a road traffic collision, which can cause the brain to jostle about within the skull, creating concussion-like symptoms as well as issues with hearing and balance.
  • Perforated eardrums - The eardrums are very fragile and can be easily damaged by the insertion of foreign objects such as cotton buds into the ear. Loud noises, sudden changes in pressure, head trauma, and ear infections can also cause the eardrum to perforate, leading to hearing loss. It is usually temporary until the eardrum heals, but in extreme cases the eardrum may not heal and the hearing loss may be permanent.
  • Acoustic trauma - The human ear can generally cope with sounds up to around 80 decibels (dB), and anything louder than this has the potential to cause temporary or permanent hearing loss. Acoustic trauma can be caused suddenly by hearing a gunshot or an explosion at close range, or any other loud noise like a siren or alarm.

If your hearing has been affected due to exposure to a loud sound in an accident or incident which wasn’t your fault, you may be entitled to make a claim for loss of hearing compensation. Please get in touch with our friendly and professional team to find out how we can help you to claim what you deserve and move forward with your life.

What is Noise-Induced Hearing Loss?

Noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) is an umbrella term which encompasses several different hearing conditions which are typically caused by prolonged exposure to noises above 80dB, including:

  • Acoustic shock syndrome - This is damage to the ear caused by exposure to high intensity, high frequency sounds through a headset, or by exposure to a single intense sound at close range like an explosion.
  • Tinnitus - This is a buzzing, ringing, or whistling sound in one or both ears caused by exposure to very loud noise, such as at a concert or nightclub.
  • Occupational/industrial deafness - This is when the cells in the inner ear become permanently damaged by prolonged exposure to noise above 80dB, causing complete or partial hearing loss.

NIHL is often referred to as occupational deafness given that it mostly affects those who work in a very noisy environment. According to figures by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) there are more than two million people in the UK exposed to unacceptable levels of noise in the workplace, and NIHL is the second most common reason for occupational health claims against employers’ liability insurance.

Noise-induced hearing loss typically occurs gradually, with sounds becoming distorted or muffled over time. Those suffering from this type of hearing loss will often require hearing aids to amplify sounds and enable them to hear better, allowing them to continue engaging in daily activities and conversations with confidence.

NIHL most commonly affects those who work in environments where noise levels regularly or constantly exceed 80dB, for example those in industries such as mining, construction, engineering, manufacturing, road drilling, live music etc.

If you currently work, or have previously worked in an environment where you were regularly exposed to high volumes of noise, and your hearing has been affected, you may be entitled to make a claim for compensation. If your employer did not provide the correct personal protective equipment, such as noise-cancelling headphones, or the equipment they provided was defective or not adequate for the job, they can be held liable for your hearing loss injury.

Here at Lanyon Bowdler we have helped many people who have suffered workplace-related injuries, such as hearing loss, to sue their current or former employers and receive compensation. No amount of money can ever restore your hearing fully, but it can provide the necessary funds to access treatment that may help you to live a better quality of life.

Loss Of Hearing Compensation FAQs

When it comes to making a claim for hearing loss compensation you may have a few queries or concerns, which we have tried to address here:

  • How do I make a claim? First of all you’ll need to visit your GP to have your symptoms assessed and receive a diagnosis of hearing loss. Ask for a copy of your medical records as this will be valuable evidence in your compensation case. The next step is to contact a solicitor who specialises in personal injury claims, like the team here at Lanyon Bowdler, and we can guide you through the process.
  • How long do I have to make a claim? You have three  years in which to begin your claim, starting from either the date of your accident, the time you were exposed to the noise, or from when you first realised that you had experienced hearing loss.
  • How much does it cost to claim? We are able to offer our personal injury services on a no win no fee basis, which means that if your claim is unsuccessful you won’t owe us anything, and if your claim is successful we will recoup our fees from the final compensation amount before it is awarded to you.

Why Choose Lanyon Bowdler?

Our empathetic, holistic, and tailored approach to serious injury claims has earned us a strong reputation as one of the leading law firms in Herefordshire, North Wales, and the Marches. We have received acclamations from The Legal 500 and Chambers UK, and we continually strive to uphold the reputation we have earned through diligence and care in everything we do. With flexible pricing options and a personalised approach to every compensation case, we’re confident that our people are the right people for your team.

Contact us

If you’re looking for legal representation in your hearing loss compensation case, as well as the support you need as you recover from your injuries, then you’re in the right place. Get in touch today to find out how our people can become your team, working together for justice.

We are one of the most recognised firms of solicitors in Herefordshire, Shropshire, Mid and North Wales, Birmingham and the Midlands, synonymous with excellence. We are able to offer a wide range of pricing options including fixed fees and service level guarantees.

As a leading national law firm, we regularly act for clients on hearing injury compensation claims across the country. We can represent you wherever you live in England, Wales or Northern Ireland.

Testimonials

Great, friendly staff - really approachable and professional. Never pushy!

- Fairfield High School, Hereford

Emma Wilson was excellent, good communication and a fast sale of my property.

- Stephen Williams, Llangollen

Julie Langford was very compassionate and understanding, she guided me well and above all listened to me. Couldn’t ask for more. Thank you.

- Mrs J McMillan, Telford

Jane Miles was at all times professional and patient. It was a senstive case and she maintained clarity and compassion, and in the end we got a result.

- Miss Jane Garner

We found they always listened to what we had to say and replied in Queens English without a lot of legal jargon.

- Mr J Manley & Mrs B Manley, Craven Arms

Gemma was brilliant from start to finish! Could not have asked for a better service!

- Andrew Homer, Plymouth

He was great, he listened and suggested the best course of action - thank you.

- Mr T Graves, Shrewsbury

Julie Langford, who looked after us, very customer friendly, very clear and very efficient.

- Mr & Mrs Milhavy, Wolverhampton

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