South Tyneside ‘slips and trips’ compensation bill is one of lowest in UK

South Shields Town Hall.
South Shields Town Hall.

South Tyneside Council had one of the lowest bills for compensation claims in the country over the last two years.

New figures from the Taxpayers’ Alliance show the council shelled out just £12,461 in the financial year 2013-14 – and nothing at all in 2014-15.

We fully investigate every claim we receive to ensure the Council only settles claims where liability has been established.

Council spokesman

The council paid out on just three claims in 2013-14.

The biggest settlement was £4,500 to someone who suffered an arm injury when a wheel came off a barrow. Others were £4,500 to a dermatitis sufferer and £3,750 to a trip victim.

Across the North East, £5,033,303 was paid in compensation by local authorities over the two years. Newcastle City Council shelled out more than £800,000 and Durham County Council almost £550,000.

A spokesman for South Tyneside Council said the authority took its responsibility to protect council taxpayers’ money seriously: : “We fully investigate every claim we receive to ensure the Council only settles claims where liability has been established.”

Nationwide, nearly £8,000,000 was paid out by councils in claims related to potholes over 2013-2014 and 2014-2015.

Taxpayers’ Alliance chief executive Jonathan Isaby said: “The compensation culture is costing taxpayers dear and every pound spent on settlements or higher insurance premiums is a pound that isn’t spent on essential services.

“Some payments will be justified, but in many cases, authorities will be failing to live up to the standards required of them by law or paying out on frivolous claims too easily.”