The workers compensation act protects an employer from being sued by their employees after sustaining an injury at work. This does not mean that the employee cannot get fair compensation in case there is a dispute. All employers in the United States are required to pay their employees for their injuries regardless of who is at fault. This is according to the workers compensation laws.
In most cases, the employees cannot sue their employer, even if they are liable. However, there are some exceptions to this law. Therefore, if you have been injured while at work and you are not getting fairly compensated by your employer’s workers compensation insurance, talk to a personal injury attorney in your state to know the other options you have.
When to File a Lawsuit
While employers have immunity from personal injury claims, the immunity is sometimes not outright. To ensure that the employees get fair compensation, they can sue their employer for the following exceptions:
The Employer was Extremely Negligent
Federal and state laws also require employees to provide a safe working environment for their employees at all times. This includes providing safe work procedures, training, having safety warnings, and the right Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), among others. If the employer fails to do this, the employee’s attorney can argue that they were extremely negligent and failed to protect their employees. To get maximum compensation, they can sue the negligent employer.
The Injuries Were Intentional
If you are able to prove that the employer intentionally caused the injuries, you can also sue to seek full compensation. Intentional injuries can result from torture, assault, battery, false imprisonment, and emotional distress. The employee has a right to get compensated for all damages and injuries they sustained while at work. Some states allow this claim to deter employers from inflicting intentional harm to their employees.
You Are an Independent Contractor
Independent contractors are not covered by workers compensation insurance. This is because they are not direct employees. However, before contracting them, the employer should ensure that they have insurance. If they fail to do this, they can sue the employer for full compensation because they are not covered under the workers compensation act.
Your Claim Was Denied in Bad Faith
There are states that allow an employer to sue if their workers compensation claim was denied for no tangible reasons. Your attorney will first have to appeal with the state’s workers compensation board before they can file a lawsuit.
The Product that Injured You Was Manufactured by Your Employer
You can also sue your employer for product liability if the defective product that you used was manufactured by your employer. Your attorney can file a product liability lawsuit instead of a workers compensation lawsuit.
Employer Does Not Have Enough Workers Compensation Insurance
If you sustain severe injuries or damages yet your employer lacks adequate insurance coverage to fully compensate you for the damages, you can choose to sue them to collect maximum compensation. To claim maximum compensation, your attorney will have to treat this like any other personal injury lawsuit and this means getting enough evidence to prove negligence and that the negligence caused the accident or injuries.
Get Help from a Personal Injury Attorney
Filing a lawsuit against an employer can be very challenging. Without the best legal help, you might be too intimidated to take on your employer. If you do not get the compensation you deserve after a workplace injury, talk to an experienced personal injury attorney to get legal advice and help with your claim process.