Millions of workers in the United States are injured on the job every year, entitling them to compensation from their employers. This is why most businesses have workers’ compensation plans in place. It’s also why people need to understand their rights as employees as well as what their employers must do to compensate them for injuries or illnesses received while on the job.
Specifically, can employees sue their employers if they are offered and collect workers’ compensation benefits? Find out more about what workers’ compensation is, how it relates to personal injury lawsuits, and how you can be fairly compensated for the injuries you have sustained at work.
What is Workers’ Compensation?
Workers’ compensation is an employer-provided insurance plan that compensates employees of a business if they are injured, disabled, or fall ill while performing their office duties. This compensation is meant to cover lost wages, medical expenses, rehabilitation expenses, and other costs associated with the illness or injury the person received while on the job. Some plans also provide death benefits to the families of victims who lose their life while on the job. These benefits can help to pay for funeral costs, loss of income, and other expenses.
Different plans have different benefits and stipulations, so check with your employers’ human resources department for more information on their workers’ compensation plan.
Businesses in the state of New York, with some very narrow exceptions, must provide workers’ compensation benefits to their employees, even to those who work part time.
Have You Been Injured In An Accident? Contact Morelli Law877-751-9800
Can I Sue My Employer if They Offer Workers’ Compensation?
Workers’ compensation in New York works as a type of no-fault insurance plan, meaning that those who are injured, disabled, or fall ill can receive the benefits of the program regardless of who was at fault for the incident. So long as you were hurt or fell ill while on the job and within the scope of your work, you can file a claim with the insurance provider used by your business.
Because of the way workers’ compensation works in New York, employees cannot sue their employers in most cases. However, there are exceptions. In certain situations, an employee may be able to pursue a personal injury lawsuit against their employer if their injury was a result of intentional misconduct by someone at the company or through actions that go beyond normal workplace hazards.
Construction accidents are a notable exception. When you work on a construction site, the owner or general contractor is responsible for ensuring the safety of the workers. While construction is a naturally dangerous job, many of the accidents that happen on a jobsite are the result of negligence. It’s crucial to consult with an attorney who specializes in construction accident lawsuits to discuss the specifics of your case and to fully understand your legal options.
What to Do After an Accident at Work
If you’ve been injured while at work, take the following actions:
- Prioritize your health and safety by seeking medical attention.
- Notify your employer of the incident by following their specific procedures for reporting injuries. Provide accurate details about the incident and the injuries you sustained.
- Keep detailed notes about the incident, including date, time, location, and events leading up to the injury. If possible, take as many photos of the accident scene, hazards, or conditions that contributed to the injury as possible.
- Obtain contact information and statements from any witnesses who saw the incident.
- Preserve any physical evidence related to the incident, such as damaged equipment, tools, or clothing. Keep copies of any documents or communications you have had with your employer.
- File a workers’ compensation claim, providing necessary documentation and information.
- Attend all medical appointments and follow the prescribed treatment plan. Keep records of your medical expenses, prescriptions, and other related costs.
- Know your rights and contact a personal injury attorney as soon as possible.
Do I Need an Attorney?
Every case is different, and it may not be immediately apparent that you’ll need an attorney for your case. However, it costs nothing to call a personal injury attorney and inquire about your case. At Morelli Law, we provide no-cost, no-obligation case assessments that can help determine if you have a case. We have worked with people who were injured at work to help them recover larger settlements and verdicts for their cases. A catastrophic injury can completely alter your life, so don’t leave your case up to chance, and don’t simply accept that you have received justice just because you are collecting workers’ compensation.
We are here to fight for you. Give us a call for a free case evaluation today.