What Happens In A Workplace Accident In Most Cases
The majority of workplace accidents are just that – accidents. Whether it’s tripping over something, something falling on you, or twisting an ankle while walking up a flight of stairs, all workplace accidents go through the same basic process.
You’ll begin by reporting the injury to your employer. They’ll then fill out appropriate worker’s compensation forms. These forms are related to their insurance policy which is there to provide you with protection if hurt on the job in any way. You may also have to submit to a drug or alcohol test to prove that you weren’t at fault for your accident.
Then, you’ll get the medical treatment you need. Worker’s compensation usually covers all medical bills and a percentage of the wages you lose by missing work. But, in some cases workers’ compensation insurance companies may deny your claim outright. In others, you might have even more rights to additional compensation. In either case, it’s important to connect with a lawyer and determine whether or not you need to file a worker’s compensation lawsuit claim.
Negligence And Your Rights
If you’re denied worker’s compensation outright or if your accident was caused by negligence, you may be able to file a lawsuit and get the restitution you’re owed. The first step here is understanding negligence as defined by Florida law.
Under the law, if you can show that your employer acted in a negligent or reckless manner and that those negligent actions led to your injuries, you have the right to restitution. This generally means proving that the employer was aware of a safety risk but did nothing to correct it or warn you about it. It can also mean that they violated OSHA and other safety standard guidelines or that they forced you to do something that was inherently dangerous.
It’s important to understand that if the employer wasn’t aware of a safety risk prior to the accident, they can’t be held liable. Their worker’s compensation insurance will still need to provide compensation, but additional restitution through legal action may not be possible. This makes it very difficult to prove fault and negligence in a work related accident.
What Are You Owed?
Worker’s compensation often has strict guidelines in place in terms of the amount of money that they will pay out. If those limits are reached, there may be little that can be done to get additional compensation. But in the case of a claim involving a lawsuit, what is a fair settlement amount?
The goal of a lawsuit is generally to get your financial situation back to the point that it would be in if the accident had never happened. This can include things like compensation for:
• Medical bills
• Future estimated medical bills
• Lost wages and future lost wages
• Estimated loss of earning potential
That last point is one of the most complex and is why a lawyer is often needed to ensure you don’t accept an amount that is less than you deserve. For example, if an injury leads to an employee being disabled or no longer able to perform a certain job, or if it reduces their chances of a promotion or raise, the total cost of that potential needs to be considered. This can require a lot of hard work from professionals, and is beyond the means of the average person.
No matter your situation, the best step you can take is to reach out and contact a personal injury lawyer to see what your rights are. Our team is standing by and ready to help you get the restitution you’re owed. Contact us today to get your free case review.