There have been many cases of workplace injury victims suffering unnecessarily for extended periods of time, only because they didn’t know that they had extensive legal rights at their disposal. Although most people know that it is possible to sue an employer for negligence, personal injury, lost wages, pain and suffering and other applicable damages, it is easy to assume that large scale employers are difficult to win against. Then there’s the fact that suing an employer would make it difficult to retain employment and go back to work. Until you meet with an experienced injury attorney, you won’t have the ability to make an informed decision based on the personal merits of your case.
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Why workers compensation insurance matters
Workers compensation insurance coverage is frequently touted as being a “win-win” solution for employers and injured workers alike. Although workers compensation benefits usually do provide employees with larger financial rewards, on average, when compared to standard short and long-term disability rates, going on workers comp will preclude you from ever suing your employer. An injury that you experience in the workplace today could impact the rest of your work career, so signing away your rights to litigate soon after your injury could actually be quite premature.
What types of compensation are you legally entitled to?
Successful workplace injury claims generally entail cases where workers have sustained injuries as a result of the negligent, repetitive, unsafe or uninformed actions of an employer or its agents. For example, if an employee were instructed by a manager to perform a work related duty in an unsafe manner or location, and an injury occurred, the injured party in this case would almost certainly be entitled to a monetary award. Employers are responsible for their workers’ health, safety and well being, and when injuries occur, they are legally liable for damages. You cannot really calculate how much you are entitled to, nor can you determine what type of claim you will be able to file without the assistance of a trained lawyer.
Exercising your legal right to file suit against your employer
In the event that your injury was caused or exacerbated while you were actively working at your place of employment, consulting with a workers compensation attorney is recommended. While your direct supervisors and managers may have sympathy for you, in very few instances are employers willing to voluntarily take responsibility for injuries that occurred in the workplace. Also, realise that all businesses operate in accordance with protecting their best interests. This means that any initial settlements offered will require you to relinquish your right to pursue legal action. Always consult with a workplace injury attorney before signing any waivers, non-disclosure agreements or contracts that forbid you from exercising your legal rights.
If you have been injured at work, you may feel pressure to get well and return to your duties as soon as possible so that you can have a steady income again, but this is not possible in every individual case. By following the advice of your doctor and lawyer, you can determine what the most advantageous course of action is.