Accident Injury on an Industrial Construction Site
An industrial accident on a construction site can have devastating consequences. Whether you are exposed to a toxic chemical that causes immediate or long term effects, or whether you are injured in some other manner resulting in physical damage, you may be entitled to recover damages for the industrial accident from your employer. If you were working on the construction site when you were injured, then you will need to recover from your employer through the workers compensation system.
Workers Compensation and an Industrial Accident
Workers compensation legislation has been passed in all 50 states. It created an exclusive remedy system for injured workers that acts as an alternative to the traditional tort system. Under the rules of workers compensation legislation, an injured worker is able to recover from his employer any time he suffers an injury arising out of his job duties, regardless of whether any negligence or carelessness was involved or not. He cannot, however, file a lawsuit but he instead must recover under workers compensation rules. The only thing that will bar him from recovery under these rules is if he did something in express violation of law or company policy, like coming drunk to work when the accident happened.
Assuming the employer didn't do anything to disqualify him, and assuming the injury arose out of the job, then when an industrial accident occurs, the workers has to follow several steps to recover his damages:
- He must inform his employer of the injury within the state mandated time limit. In some cases, the limit is simply "as soon as practical." In other states, the limit is a few months or a few years. In cases where the injury is actually an illness caused by chemical exposure, then the worker usually has to let the employer know as soon as the injury becomes apparent.
- He must get a medical diagnosis. Sometimes, this can be from any doctor. Other times, he is limited to working with a doctor his employer chooses.
- He must show the nature and extent of the injuries and impairment he has suffered, and must show the injury arose out of work.
State law sets the amount of compensation a worker can get. It usually includes payment of medical bills as well as wages lost from work missed, once a few days of absence occur. If the industrial accident caused permanent or long term damage, then total or partial disability payments may also be in order.
If you are the victim of an industrial accident, you should consult with an experienced attorney as soon as you can. Your lawyer can assist you in taking any and all steps necessary to recover through the workers compensation system and to get the money you need.