If you’re an employee who was hurt on the job, you will want to know how you can be compensated for any injuries you suffered. It’s important to know when it’s appropriate to seek a worker’s compensation claim versus a personal injury claim.
Worker’s Comp Factors and Personal Injury Factors
Although both a New York personal injury lawsuit and a worker’s compensation claim can arise from accidents that happen in the workplace, there are key differences when it comes to liability. Negligence occurs when someone is harmed as a direct result of a party’s carelessness. This is the primary basis of liability in a personal injury claim.
However, in a worker’s compensation claim, the compensation is intended to cover certain injuries, regardless of who is at fault. Absent an exception, any employee who is injured on the job is entitled to worker’s comp benefits without having to prove fault; you don’t need to show proof that your employer, supervisor, or co-workers did anything wrong in order to receive these benefits. Additionally, even if you were negligent and that was the cause of your injury, you are still entitled to the benefits.
Recovery in Worker’s Compensation Claims vs. Personal Injury Claims
In a personal injury lawsuit, the plaintiff is trying to recover any losses that came from the accident. The damages may include compensation for medical bills, future medical expenses, lost earnings, any future lost earnings, permanent impairment, loss of enjoyment of life (hedonic damages), future health care costs associated with the injury and damages for pain and suffering.
In a worker’s compensation claim, you’re only entitled to receive weekly compensation, permanent impairment benefits, health care bills, and vocational rehabilitation. However, unlike a personal injury lawsuit, you typically cannot get compensation for pain and suffering.
Requirements for Worker’s Compensation
Generally, these are the requirements for worker’s compensation:
- You are an employee
- Your employer carries worker’s comp insurance
- You suffered a work-related injury or illness
- You must report your injury/illness and file for a worker’s comp claim within the deadline
Filing a Claim
As an injured worker you usually won’t be able to file for both worker’s compensation claims and a personal injury suit, but you may be able to recover compensation via a third-party lawsuit if your injuries were the result of a safety violation. In this situation, a third-party claim may be against a subcontractor or a property owner; this can assist with supplementing the funds coming in from a worker’s comp claim. Keep in mind that this is important because worker’s compensation only covers a small portion of your wages, generally about 2/3 of your wages.
Speak to an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney
If you or your someone you know has been injured while on the job, you want to make sure that you get the compensation that you are entitled to receive. Don’t wait for the negligent party or the insurance company to step up. Act in your best interests and speak to an experienced personal injury attorney. Our MOWK Law New York personal injury attorneys have the know-how and dedication to assist you through these difficult times. Contact us today to learn about what you can do to get the compensation that you deserve.