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Currently Browsing: Workers Compensation/Workplace Injuries

Common issues with Workman’s Compensation and Workplace Injuries

Although preventable, workplace injuries are very common, especially in a number of worksites such as construction and mining. In fact, according to ABC news, an average of 50 to 60 coal miners die in this country every year while they work. If you ask any Minnesota workers’ comp attorney, a worker who was injured in the workplace or during working hours has the right to workers’ compensation benefits, regardless of who caused the accident. However, the injured worker also has the option of filing for a personal injury claim against the person who caused the accident if the cause was due to recklessness or negligence and the resulting injuries were significant enough to seek for damages. In order to understand which option is best to go with, it is therefore vital to know the difference between personal injury claims and worker’s compensation benefits.

The main difference between workers’ compensation and personal injury claims is that the latter is dependent on establishing fault, while worker’s compensation is not. Recovering damages for personal injury claims require proof of negligence on the side of the other party, which means evidence should be provided that they did indeed were at fault. On the other hand, worker’s compensation benefits are given to workers injured while on the workplace or when performing their duties regardless of who was negligent. Even when you caused the accident, you are still entitled to worker’s compensation benefits.

As for damages, The Benton Law Firm states that personal injury claims entitle you to recover all types of damages, including pain and suffering, among other things. Workers’ compensation, however, can only provide for lost wages, permanent disability benefits, vocational rehabilitation, and medical bills. Those who have availed workers’ compensation may not be allowed to file for personal injury claims, as workers’ compensation law also protects the management and company from lawsuits after workplace accidents. Although majority of workplace injuries are covered by compensation, there are specific cases where this benefit is not awarded to the injured worker. Compensation may be denied when the injured worker was under the influence of any prohibited drugs or alcohol when injured, as well as when the injuries were self-inflicted, when violation on company laws or policy was made, or when the injury occurred while not on duty.

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