Can I file a lawsuit against my employer for a work injury?
The workers compensation system was put in place so injured workers would not have to sue their employers if they are injured. Instead of having to go through the personal injury legal process, which can be a drawn-out process, injured workers will usually begin receiving benefits within a very short period of time after the accident.
The exception to this rule is if the injured employee can file a third-party liability lawsuit or claim against someone other than the employer, such as another contractor. A third party can also be a product manufacturer if a defective product caused the injury while you were at work. In third-party cases, the tort laws of the state you live in will apply, such as personal injury laws or product liability laws.
Does this mean I cannot pursue damages for pain and suffering?
Workers’ compensation insurance does not provide compensation for pain and suffering and other types of damages that personal injury claims do. Instead, their focus is on supporting your family and ensuring your medical costs are covered. There are some similar damages, such as disfigurement, amputation, or scarring, that injured workers can be compensated for.
Am I able to collect both workers’ compensation disability benefits and Social Security disability benefits?
As long as you meet the criteria for both workers’ compensation and Social Security disability, there is nothing that should prevent receiving benefits from both sources at the same time.
How do I file a workers’ compensation claim?
Each state has its own rules and regulations on how workers compensation claims should be filed when an employee has been injured. A job injury attorney can explain what the rules are in your state. In general, you will need to report the injury immediately to your employer. Make sure to follow any procedure or protocol your employer has in place and make sure you are notifying the right individuals as required by your employer. It is then up to your employer to notify their insurance company of the incident. In some states, the employee may also be required to notify that state’s workers compensation commission.
This can all be explained to you by the best workers compensation attorney West Palm Beach has to offer. Even if you do not feel as if you may need one, it can be helpful to make an appointment for the free consultation that most law firms offer. The attorney can provide helpful information regarding how to file the claim, what to do if your claim is denied, and explain what rights you do have under the law.
What information should be included when filing a workers’ compensation claim?
Any information your employer requires in the claim should be included. This will likely include your contact information, details of how the incident occurred, details of the injury or injuries you have sustained, what your symptoms are, and if there were any witnesses to the incident.
It is important to note that even if you think you only sustained a minor injury, you should still report the incident to your employer. It is not uncommon for signs of a more serious injury to be delayed after an accident. Failure to report the incident in a timely manner could jeopardize your claim so it is important to have it all documented.
Thank you to our friends and contributors at The Law Offices of Franks, Koenig & Neuwelt for their insight into workers comp.