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Can I make a personal injury claim if I’m hurt in a pub?

By Robert Frost

Published In: Personal Injury

If you've been injured in a bar or nightclub due to an accident that wasn't your fault, you shouldn't have to bear the burden alone. The process of making a bar or nightclub accident claim can seem overwhelming, especially when you're already dealing with the physical and emotional toll of an injury.

In bar and nightclub claims there is unfortunately a stigma associated when the consumption of alcohol is involved. Alcohol, excitement and large groups makes accidents more likely, however liability should not be denied by business owners on this basis.

Even in the safest venues, accidents can happen. Entitlement to bring a claim and receive compensation depends on the party at fault for the injuries occurred and not whether alcohol was consumed.

Bars, pubs and nightclubs, like any other venue, owe a duty of care to their visitors. They must ensure that they are safe when visiting their premises and that hazards are prevented as much as reasonably possible. This might be achieved, for example, by removing the hazard from a broken glass on the floor that has been dropped before injury occurs. The consumption of alcohol does not negate this duty. Other hazards might result from staff members not being adequately trained, resulting in faulty equipment or slip and fall risks.

Accidents can also occur from unsafe furniture and untidy premises, lack of signage, and poor maintenance such as loose carpet. An accident in a venue such as a pub can also extend to outdoor areas such as a car park, smoking areas, shelters or beer gardens.

It can be quite a traumatic experience expecting to have an enjoyable night out only to be injured through no fault of your own.

Injuries sustained in nightlife venues can range from minor injuries through to serious life-changing injuries. Whether you have suffered from a more minor injury or a serious one and you were a victim of the business owner’s negligence, you are entitled to make a claim for compensation if the accident was not your fault.

 If you are unfortunate enough to be involved in an accident, consider whether you need any medical help and call for an ambulance if you need one. You should alert staff about your accident. Tell them immediately and they can help to arrange to get you any help that you need and write details of your accident down in their accident book. If you are able to, you should collect any evidence that you can, this may include taking photographs of the cause of your accident.

Jo Coombes, 80, recently made the news after she broke two bones in her pelvis after falling down an unmarked step at a pub in Henley.

She was getting up when she fell from the step that separates the dining area from the bar. It has taken her months to recover.

Coombes was taken to the Royal Berkshire Hospital in Reading before being moved to Upton Hospital in Slough. She was discharged after a few weeks and since then has had to relearn how to walk. The accident change her life, leaving her unable to drive and perform tasks around her home.

Since the incident the step at the pub has been marked with hazard tape.

Robert Frost , Chartered Legal Executive in our Personal Injury team acts for people who have suffered injuries as a result of accidents in public places. He comments: “Pubs and bars have a duty of care which means the occupier must take reasonable steps to reduce the risks that the public may face when visiting their premises. I have acted for people who have been cut on broken glass as there was no policy in place to clear this up for example. It can be incredibly frustrating to go on a night out ending up in Hospital with an injury that was not your fault”.

Make a bar or nightclub accident claim with Switalskis and take the first step towards getting the compensation you deserve. Call us now on 0800 138 0458, or contact us through the website to schedule your free initial consultation.


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Robert has over 5 years’ experience in the legal sector. He is a Chartered Legal Executive in the Personal Injury department.

Chartered Legal Executive

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