Exploring Social Security Cases and Outcomes

When Worker's Compensation Can Help You File Additional Claims Or Lawsuits

by Marie Caldwell

If you were injured while on the job, you may be wondering if you can get compensation in addition to your worker's comp. Worker's comp doesn't take pain and suffering into consideration. Worker's comp was meant to cover employees when they are injured on the job, and having this coverage means that you are unable to pursue personal injury lawsuits for your injuries against your employer.

However, that is only under ordinary situations. Also, sometimes other parties are involved. Here are several ways you could file for compensation while receiving worker's comp.

Your Injuries Are from Handling a Toxic Substance While Working

If you were exposed to chemicals or other substances that are toxic and caused your injuries, you may be able to file a lawsuit against the manufacturer of those substances in a toxic tort lawsuit. Toxic tort can be difficult to prove, especially if the injuries were the result of exposure to the toxin over a significant amount of time, such as mesothelioma from asbestos. However, injuries that occurred immediately after exposure to a toxic substance, such as chemical burns, are more apparent to be caused by the toxic exposure. Your worker's compensation claim can provide the proof and causation to move forward with a toxic tort lawsuit.

Your Injuries Were Caused by Equipment Malfunction

If your injuries were the result of an equipment malfunction, you may be able to file a lawsuit against the manufacturer of the equipment as well as the maintenance and/or repair service of the equipment. If your employer did not fulfill their responsibility to ensure the equipment was properly maintained and repaired, you may also be able to sue your employer for your injuries in a personal injury lawsuit in addition to receiving worker's compensation. To bolster your case, file a complaint with your local Occupational Safety & Health Administration and include documentation from your worker's compensation claim.

Your Injuries Were the Result of Reckless Procedures

Equipment malfunctions are not the only safety concern in the workplace. If unsafe procedures or unsafe requests given to you by your employer or supervisor caused your injuries, you may file a personal injury lawsuit against your employer and/or supervisor in addition to your worker's compensation. For example, if your employer does not provide fall protection gear and/or training and you fell from a ladder, your employer can be held liable for your injuries beyond the scope of worker's compensation insurance. Speak with your worker's compensation attorney for more state-specific laws regarding your ability or not to file additional claims and how your worker's compensation documentation can help prove those other claims.

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