Injuries that happen at work or on the job are usually covered by workers compensation insurance. This is an insurance policy that employers can take out to protect their employees. It also works to protect themselves because it prevents employees from suing them for negligence. Unless an employee was disregarding safety policies or acting negligently, workers compensation covers all injuries from accidents regardless of fault. That said, there are some exceptions, and a situation may arise when you can rightfully sue your employer.
Not all states have laws requiring employers to cover their employees. Some have a small number of qualifications that allow companies to avoid buying workers compensation insurance. If your employer does not have workers compensation benefits, you may be able to sue them after you get injured at work. This way you can still get expenses and damages from the injury covered instead of paying out of pocket.
In some cases, an employer may have tried to intentionally hurt you at work. For example, if your employer started a fight with you and you became injured, then this counts as intentional harm. There must be undeniable evidence that the harm was intentional and not accidental since employers are usually protected from unintentional harm.
Gross negligence refers to carelessness that disregards the safety of others. In a workers compensation lawsuit, you could use gross negligence if an employer blatantly ignored safety guidelines or failed to create a safe work environment. This can be challenging to prove in court, so you must have solid evidence proving their negligence.
A contractor is not considered an official company employee, and therefore workers compensation does not cover them. If a contractor is injured while working for that company, then they have the right to sue because the company is not protected by their workers compensation policy.
Sometimes a lawsuit can be brought against a party other than your employer. If another driver hits you while you are on a delivery, you may be able to sue them for negligence, or at least file a claim with their personal insurance. If your injury occurred because a product you were using at work was defective, you have the option to sue the manufacturer of that product.
If you aren’t sure if your injury is something you can sue over, contact a work related injury lawyer. A lawyer like one from Polsky, Shouldice & Rosen, P.C. , who works specifically with workers compensation claims can inform you about state laws and other factors that impact your case.