6 Steps to Take When a Customer Gets Hurt
One of the last things that any company wants is to get a complaint about an injury from a customer. Whether a customer is hurt by a product you manufacture or injured while on-site at your business, liability concerns are paramount. Companies want to protect themselves as best as they can from legal action. Because of this, your business should have a set of guidelines in place for how to respond to a report of a customer injury.
Contact a Manager
When a customer complains about an injury while at your location, the first thing to do is to contact the highest-ranked manager on-site to handle the situation. It is important to tread carefully in any sort of injury situation. You want to do everything you can to help the customer and behave in a manner befitting proper customer service. However, you don’t want to inadvertently expose yourself or the company to harm through litigation.
Provide Medical Assistance
When a customer gets hurt, it is important to be helpful. Lend a hand if it’s needed and call emergency services if the injury is severe. For a more mild injury, you can offer to call someone who can drive them home.
Apologize Without Admitting Fault
You should apologize for what happened to the customer, but be careful with your wording when you do so. It is critical not to admit fault while also being sympathetic to the customer. If you fail in either of these aims, you are likely to be putting yourself in a poor position.
An injured customer isn’t necessarily going to bring legal action against your company. An injured and angry customer, though, will almost certainly do so. A customer who feels you are insincere and that you don’t care about the fact that they suffered an injury will not have any qualms about the negative impact a lawsuit could have on your business.
Walking the tight rope between sincerity and not saying something that implicates you can be quite difficult. Making a comment while trying to comfort the customer that indicates that the business is responsible for what happened will put you in a very difficult position if the case does end up in court. You don’t want to blame the customer for their injury but don’t want to take responsibility for it yourself either.
It is vital to be ambiguous when it comes to who is at fault and try to avoid the subject altogether.
After you have seen the medical needs of the customer, it is crucial to collect as much information about the accident as possible. However, after getting the injured customer’s initial story of events, do not pursue further details from that particular source. In case they do bring a lawsuit against your company, you don’t want to engage them too much before speaking with a lawyer.
Any communication between you and the injured party beyond the necessities in the early aftermath of the accident increases the chances that you could say something they could use against you in court.
However, you should talk to any other potential witnesses, whether they be employees or customers. That way, you will have as clear of a picture of what occurred as possible. Make sure to collect contact details for any customers who witnessed the accident so that you can contact them later should you need their testimony in court.
You should also check any security cameras that may have caught the incident and make sure to make hard copies of security footage. Examine the scene of the accident to help discover what occurred and any factors that may have come into play and take plenty of pictures.
Contact Your Insurance
Get in contact with your insurance agent to report the accident and discuss what your coverage is should the customer’s injuries prove to be serious.
Contact a Lawyer
Contact a lawyer and get a free case evaluation so that you have an idea of all of your options and where you stand legally. Should your customer pursue legal action, you will need representation from a qualified attorney to assure that your business does not take a financial hit that it can’t afford.