According to insureon.com, serious, nonfatal workplace injuries account for almost $60 billion in workers’ compensation costs across the nation. Overwhelmingly, overexertion is the leading cause of workplace injuries, followed by injuries sustained from a fall (either a slip and fall or a fall from a height). Overexertion occurs when an employee lifts, pushes, pulls, or carries objects as part of their work routine.
Slip and falls occur in the workplace due to loose wires, wet floors, a file cabinet drawer left open, uneven flooring heights, lack of handrails on stairs, or items left in the walkway. Slip and falls can be responsible for minor to serious injuries in the workplace. Falls from a ladder, roof, or scaffolding to a lower surface can result in serious, even fatal injuries. Other types of work injuries include:
Because a Texas insurance company is not in the business of looking out for your best interests, it can be extremely beneficial to have a Fort Worth non-subscriber work injury attorney by your side. The attorneys at Noteboom—The Law Firm have confidence in our ability to achieve justice for Texans injured in the workplace. We take a team-based approach to resolving all cases—an approach that will work in your favor.
How Does the Texas Workplace Injury System Work?
Workers’ compensation is a state-regulated insurance program that provides medical and lost wage benefits to workers for work-related injuries or illnesses. Texas is the only state in the U.S. that does not require private employers to carry workers’ compensation insurance. Those who do carry WC insurance must inform employees and must post a workplace notice with the name of the insurance carrier.
If your employer carries workers’ compensation insurance, you cannot sue for work-related injuries or illnesses—with a few exceptions. These exceptions include those who work on a boat or ship, asbestos-related illnesses, or injuries sustained while operating a punch-press. If your employer does not carry workers’ compensation insurance but has a private occupational injury benefit plan, then they are (loosely governed) by federal ERISA laws. Regardless of whether your employer carries WC insurance, they must still comply with reporting and notification requirements.
In the event that your employer does not carry WC insurance, your medical expenses and lost wages due to a workplace injury are the responsibility of your employer. A court will determine the benefits you are entitled to receive. Your legal fees will be covered by your employer if your lawsuit is successful. When your employer carries WC insurance, you are not entitled to pain and suffering damages or punitive damages. If, however, your employer does not carry WC and you are suing for a work-related injury, you may claim pain and suffering damages and could be awarded punitive damages.
Following a Fort Worth non-subscriber work injury, you must take immediate steps to protect your health and your future. You should tell your employer about the incident that caused your workplace injury after seeking medical attention for your injuries. You will be required to demonstrate that your employer was at least partially responsible for your workplace injury.
Because of this requirement, you should contact an experienced Fort Worth non-subscriber work injury attorney from Noteboom—The Law Firm, as quickly as possible. Having an experienced WC attorney in your corner can make a significant difference in the outcome of your claim. Since Texas non-subscriber injury claims are very different from workers’ compensation claims, having a knowledgeable attorney is imperative.
Although there are significant complexities related to non-subscriber workplace injuries, the potential damages can be substantially larger, covering more of your injury-related damages. Non-subscriber work injury claims are a type of negligence-based claim but with their own unique properties.
Although employers are not required to purchase workers’ compensation insurance, the current set of laws is relatively punitive for those who choose not to do so. Not only are you allowed to sue your non-subscriber employer for a work-related injury, but generally speaking, the law makes it more difficult for your employer to fend off your claim. Having said that, your employer may do one or more of the following to avoid paying your claim:
Having an attorney who knows how to respond to any of these tactics is essential If you were legitimately injured while on the job and the injury was not deliberate, due to impairment, or from a prior incident, you are entitled to damages. If you did sign a post-injury waiver, this will not necessarily bar you from obtaining a work injury settlement. Employers often attempt to claim you were not in the “course and scope” of your duties when you were injured, and your attorney will know how to deal with this as well. What your employer may not argue is comparative fault—that is, that you and the employer were both responsible for the workplace accident. Employers may only argue that you were the sole proximate cause of your injury, and they were not liable.
If you’ve been injured at work and your employer is a non-subscriber, the process for recovery is different from a “typical” workers’ compensation claim. Because of this, you could significantly benefit from speaking to a Fort Worth non-subscriber work injury attorney from Noteboom—The Law Firm.
Our highly skilled attorneys will help you file a claim against a negligent employer or a third-party claim against a subcontractor or other individual not directly employed by your employer. Suing a non-subscriber employer in Fort Worth can be more complex than a personal injury lawsuit.
This makes it extremely important that you have an attorney who has extensive experience handling job-related injuries. With a long track record of success and an excellent reputation across the state of Texas, we will help you achieve the best outcome possible. Contact Noteboom—The Law Firm today