While a personal injury lawyer can help you file a work injury claim, seeking compensation from an employer is different from other types of injury claims. It’s more complicated to seek compensation for a workplace injury because employees are prohibited from directly suing an employer. Instead, it’s important to understand the basics of a worker’s compensation claim.
What Rights Do Employees Have?
Even though every state has its own set of laws that govern the rights of employees, there are some rules that are the same everywhere in the United States. For example, an employee is only prohibited from suing an employer as long as that employer maintains worker’s compensation insurance, or meets other requirements for showing the ability to cover injury claims.
Additional rights that all workers have include the right to see a doctor of their choice immediately following the accident. If the doctor clears them to return to work, the employee also has the right to return to their assigned position. If your doctor determines that your injuries prevent you from returning to work, this entitles you to receive disability compensation. Another right that’s common in every state is the right to hire an attorney to represent them and the right to appeal unsatisfactory rulings.
What Happens if You Require More Damages Than Worker’s Compensation Will Cover?
Worker’s compensation coverage is intended to only provide compensation for medical treatment and missed days from work. While an employer cannot be held liable for additional damages, that doesn’t mean you can’t seek compensation elsewhere.
In some situations, a personal injury attorney can help you seek damages from a third party, such as the manufacturer of the machine you were using at the time of your accident. This allows you to seek additional damages if you can show that a third party was somehow at fault. For example, if the machine’s safety features were inadequate or nonfunctional, you may have grounds for a separate personal injury claim.
As this brief overview suggests, seeking compensation for workplace injuries can become a complex process. Hiring a personal injury lawyer can help you seek the full damages you’ll need to recover from the accident and resume your life. In many cases, working with an attorney can increase your chances of obtaining a favorable outcome in your case.