Bridgeport Workplace Injury Lawyer
Workplace injuries are a prevalent problem affecting millions. In 2017, nearly 2.8 million workplace injuries and illnesses were reported by private employers. If you are one of the millions who have been negatively impacted by a workplace illness or injury, you might benefit from the care and guidance of a personal injury attorney in your local area.
The process of determining your rights, adhering to filing deadlines, and procedural requirements could be overwhelming without professional legal assistance. Insurance companies and opposing lawyers could present difficult obstacles during your journey to seek fair compensation. An experienced Bridgeport workplace injury lawyer could look into your case and help advise you on the next steps to take.
West Virginia’s Deliberate Intent Exception
Employees are usually not permitted to bring a lawsuit against their employer when they are covered under workers’ compensation insurance. However, West Virginia recognizes two exceptions known as “deliberate intent.” In certain circumstances, injured workers in Bridgeport can sue their employer directly.
The first type of deliberate intent is when an employer intends to harm an employee. Common examples might include assault, battery, or intentional infliction of emotional distress. These acts are considered intentional torts and allow an employee to step outside of workers’ compensation and sue their employer.
When an employer callously disregards the health and safety of its employees, the employer may be sued for damages. Knowingly or intentionally providing unsafe work conditions that violate safety standards or laws that cause an employee to suffer serious injury or death are grounds to sue under the callous disregard exception.
Suing for Workplace Injuries in Bridgeport
Third-Party Liability Claims
Employees, even if they are covered by workers’ compensation, may file a third-party claim against a party other than their employer or coworker that causes a workplace injury. Unlike workers’ compensation, third-party claims require an employee to prove that the defendant was at fault for causing the injury. For example, if an independent contractor caused an employee’s workplace injury while working at the employee’s jobsite, the victim could potentially file a third-party claim against the independent contractor.
No Workers’ Compensation Insurance
When the deliberate intent exception does not apply and workers’ compensation is not provided, an employee might be able to bring a lawsuit against their employer, but the employee would have to prove fault. In normal workers’ compensation cases, the employer would be held liable for an employee’s injuries under the workers’ compensation insurance regardless of fault. However, if an employee brings a personal injury lawsuit against their employer, they would have to prove that the employer was at fault.
Negligence is often used as the grounds to sue for personal injuries and property damages. Suits based on negligence must be brought within two years of the injury under West Virginia Code §55-2-12. In order to prove that an employer was negligent, an injured employee in Bridgeport would have to show the following four elements were present:
- The employer owed them a duty of care
- The employer breached that duty of care
- The employer’s breach caused the employee’s illness or injuries
- The employee suffered harm as a result
Contact a Bridgeport Workplace Injury Attorney Today
If you suffered a serious injury on-the-job, a Bridgeport workplace injury lawyer could help you fight for fair compensation. Asserting your legal right to recovery could be a long and challenging process, but a personal injury attorney could make seeking relief less stressful and more effective. Call now to discuss your options.