What to do when filing for workers’ comp after a premises liability accident
If you are injured while at your place of business, then it’s generally understood that you are entitled to workers’ compensation—whether or not the business created the hazardous condition which caused the injury. What is less known is that workers may be entitled to separate compensation (in addition to workers’ comp) if they are hurt due to a hazard created by someone other than their employer.
For example, what if you’re hurt at someone else’s home or place of business while you’re on the clock?
In these cases, workers’ compensation and premises liability law may overlap.
Untangling these 2 legal concepts can be very complex. Therefore, injured workers in Georgia should immediately consult a workers’ compensation lawyer at Gerber & Holder if they have questions about their rights.
Third-party liability in the workplace
Premises liability and workers’ compensation may seem like very different areas of law—and indeed they are. However, the 2 areas of law can intersect in certain situations.
For example, an office worker may trip on a loose tile in the lobby of an office building and fall. A truck driver may slip on an ice patch while making a delivery to a retail outlet. A courier may be bitten by a customer’s dog while delivering a package.
In such cases, workers may be able to file a claim for workers’ compensation in addition to filling a separate premises liability claim in civil court against the owner of the property where were injured.
Review the different deadlines and time frames that are important when it comes to your workers’ compensation claim.
Workers’ compensation in dog bite cases
In dog bite cases, dog owners are typically strictly liable for injuries caused by their dogs. Certain workers are more likely to encounter dogs while on the job. Landscapers, housekeepers, utility company workers, mail carriers and home health aides are just a few examples of workers who commonly visit households in which dogs may be present.
If you were bitten by someone’s dog while performing your job, you should immediately seek medical care and notify your employer. Then, you should pursue a workers’ compensation claim since these benefits are generally provided faster and easier. Next, you may need to talk to a premises liability lawyer about filing a third-party personal injury claim if your workers’ comp benefits don’t sufficiently cover your expenses.
A premises liability lawyer can simultaneously begin the process of filing a personal injury case in civil court. If your lawyer is able to reach a settlement or win a judgment in court, you will receive compensation from the civil claim in addition to workers’ compensation benefits.
Injuries caused by dog bites and animal attacks
While some dog bites cause relatively minor injuries, others may require time off for you to recover. If a dog bites your hand, for instance, you may not be able to perform certain required duties. A dog bite to your face may require surgery and a lengthy healing process.
Dog bites may cause other serious injuries, including:
- Eye injuries
- Head and neck injuries
- Puncture wounds
- Broken bones
Whether filing a workers’ compensation claim or a premises liability lawsuit, medical documentation is critical to establishing the extent of your injury in a civil case. The severity of your injury will generally have a direct impact on settlement negotiations and, if necessary, the amount of compensation an administrative law judge (ALJ) or civil court judge may award you if your case proceeds to a hearing or court.
Workers’ comp vs. compensation in premise liability cases
Workers’ compensation benefits generally cover lost income, medical expenses and disability. If a workplace injury causes a worker’s death, then their family may receive compensation on the worker’s behalf as well as compensation for funeral and burial costs. In most cases, workers’ compensation covers up to two-thirds of your wages.
In addition to compensation for lost wages and medical bills, a third-party premises liability case for a work-related injury can provide the injured worker with non-economic damages like pain and suffering and punitive damages, which are not generally provided for through workers’ compensation.
When to contact a workers’ compensation attorney
If you or someone you know has been injured while on the clock, contact an experienced lawyer right away at Gerber & Holder Law. We can help you file a workers’ compensation claim with your employer and ensure you get the full benefits you are owed.
If workers’ compensation is not available or if a third party may be liable for your injury, we will also help you decide if you should file a separate personal injury claim in civil court. We are experienced in obtaining workers’ comp settlements for dog bite cases, slip and falls and other workplace injuries.
In addition to helping our clients receive the maximum workers’ compensation benefits, we are thoroughly experienced in Georgia premise liability law. Therefore, you can count on us to provide trustworthy legal counsel and reliable representation. We will work diligently to protect your rights as a worker in Georgia, and we will fight for the compensation you deserve.