Accidents & Workers’ Comp
Given the amount of time the average person spends at work, it is not surprising that a large number of accidents and injuries occur in the workplace.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were approximately 4,400 fatal work injuries nationwide in 2013. Of the 70 fatal work injuries reported in Georgia that year, 24 resulted from transportation incidents, 17 from contact with objects and equipment, and 14 from falls, slips, or trips. The most recent available data also shows that in 2012 there were over 3 million cases of nonfatal injuries and illnesses.
These injuries stem from a wide range of incidents and an even wider range of causes. Because there are unique issues surrounding workplace injuries, it is wise for anyone who has been injured on the job to seek legal advice. The Middle Georgia worksite injury lawyers of the Mann Law Firm are ready and able to provide experienced and knowledgeable representation.
Workers’ Compensation Insurance
The majority of injuries sustained at work are covered by workers’ compensation insurance. This insurance is paid for by your employer and is designed to cover medical expenses as well as lost wages resulting from a workplace injury. In Georgia, workers are covered by worker’s compensation for the entirety of their employment, from their first day on the job until their last.
One of the main benefits of the worker’s compensation system is that an injured worker can be awarded benefits for lost wages and medical expenses without having to file a lawsuit to prove that the injuries were the fault of the employer. The system also prevents the worker from bringing a third-party claim against his or her employer to recover damages sustained in a workplace accident.
There are, however, a number of exceptions to these principles. An employee may, for example, file a third-party claim if the injury sustained was caused by someone other than themselves, a co-worker, or their employer. Instances in which a worker may be able to file a claim include the following:
- Injuries caused by a worker from a different company on the worker’s job site
- Industrial accidents resulting from defective products manufactured by someone other than the worker’s employer
- Injuries caused by unsafe premises (if owned or operated by someone other than the worker’s employer).
Why You Should Talk With an Attorney
Cases involving a workplace accident can be very complicated. Because it may be difficult to determine all of the crucial details, you should consider having your case evaluated by an attorney. With over 50 years of experience, the Mann Law Firm has the necessary skill to ensure that you are receiving all of the worker’s compensation benefits to which you are entitled and to pursue any possible claims against third parties.
An additional consideration is that certain jobs are inherently more dangerous than others. The construction industry, for example, has some of the highest worker injury rates of any occupation. Construction sites can be hectic, with workers from many different companies working on a variety of intersecting tasks and projects. Such jobsites are also constantly changing, which means that early legal intervention and investigation are critical.
Another pitfall of the worker’s compensation system is the potential for improper (and sometimes illegal) handling of a workplace injury. Due in part to the rising cost of worker’s compensation insurance, there have been instances of companies pressuring injured employees not to report workplace injuries. In some cases, employees who make a worker’s compensation claim are harassed, discriminated against, and fired. Such practices are illegal and should not be allowed to continue. The Warner Robins GA workplace injury attorneys of the Mann Law Firm will defend your rights against any illegal practices that your employer uses.
Dealing With Insurance Companies
The Mann Law Firm has considerable experience in negotiating with insurance companies and can guide you through your rights in the legal process. There is help available, so if you have been injured in a workplace accident, please contact us to schedule a free case consultation. We can be reached at (478) 742-3381 in Macon, Dublin, Warner Robins or Milledgeville, or through our online form.