- July 4
- Workplace Accidents
Workplace accidents happen, and when they do, you may wonder when you can sue if you get burned at work. These thoughts are understandable, particularly when you are undergoing medical treatments and need time off to recuperate from your injury. Rising expenses and loss of wages can soon become worrisome and stressful, and you need to know your rights and what your options are when it comes to recovering expenses and damages.
Can You Sue if You Get Burned at Work?
If a burn injury occurs while you are at work, you may be required to file a workers’ compensation claim first. If not, suing your employer or a negligent third party is a potential option, depending upon the circumstances surrounding the accident.
If you work for an employer that carries workers’ compensation insurance, you will need to file a claim immediately following the accident. With this, you are prevented from suing the employer unless unusual circumstances are involved.
So, when can you sue if you get burned at work?
Your Employer Doesn’t Carry Workers’ Compensation
Not all states require their employers to carry workers’ compensation insurance. If you work in one of these states, which includes Texas, and your employer has chosen not to carry this insurance for employees, you may be able to sue. Two requirements to do so, however, will be that you sustained the injury while performing your job and that the employer was negligent in some way.
Another circumstance where you may be able to sue for a workplace burn injury is if third-party negligence is involved. The essential key to your case will be showing how that third party’s negligence contributed to the accident that led to your injury. Situations in which this may occur include:
- The equipment you use to perform your job is defective due to the manufacturer’s negligence.
- You are working offsite at a client’s location.
- You are a contractor.
- You drive for your job and are involved in an accident that is not your fault.
- An outside contractor performs poor maintenance at your workplace.
While OSHA requires employers to maintain safe working environments, workplace injuries, including burns, can occur for a variety of reasons. Consulting with our personal injury attorneys can ensure that you understand what is involved in your particular case and will provide you with legal guidance on the next steps available for you to take.
Can You Claim for a Burn at Work?
As long as you are an employee and your employer carries workers’ compensation insurance, the answer to “Can you claim for a burn at work?” is usually “yes.” You will need to inform your supervisor and file a workers’ compensation claim as soon as possible following the injury. Your claim will be for specific benefits; once approved, you will receive:
- medical care and treatments relating to workplace burns
- lost wages, or a portion of lost wages, for time away from work.
When your employee does not carry workers’ compensation insurance, your next step will be to file a legal claim against your employer or the negligent third party.
The amount of compensation you can receive under a legal claim will depend upon the severity of your burn injuries. In Texas, such damages may include:
- Full medical expenses, current and future
- Physical therapy or occupational therapy
- Pain and suffering, both physical and emotional
- Lost wages for missed days of work during recuperation
- Loss of earning capacity
- Punitive damages, if applicable.
Additional damages may be sought in certain circumstances, also.
At this point, your attorneys will meet with the negligent party and enter negotiations for an acceptable settlement on your behalf. If a fair settlement can’t be reached, however, you will then need to consider taking your claim to trial. Your attorneys will sit down with you and explain your options and inform you about what to expect, staying by your side through the entire process.
Can You Sue a Restaurant for a Burn?
Burn injuries can occur in any type of workplace, including restaurants. With hot stoves and grills, not to mention various electrical appliances, the causes may be many.
As a result, restaurant employees can often suffer burn injuries that are debilitating and require time away for medical treatment and recovery. If this happens to you, first check with your employer to determine whether they carry workers’ compensation insurance. If so, you’ll need to file a claim immediately.
If your restaurant employer does not carry workers’ compensation insurance or you believe that negligence is involved, you may indeed be able to sue the restaurant to recover damages, such as medical expenses and lost wages. Proving negligence is the key factor to a successful lawsuit, so working with attorneys with experience in various work injuries will be beneficial.
Evans/Reilley: Your Workplace Injury Lawyers in Austin, TX
Burn injuries suffered in the workplace can be dangerous, causing extensive pain and suffering, and will require various levels of medical care and treatments. Our burn injury lawyers here at Evans/Reilley in Austin, TX, understand this and work diligently for our injured clients to ensure they receive the compensation they need and deserve.
If you or any of your loved ones have suffered a burn injury at work, reach out to us for a free consultation. Our lawyers will provide a full evaluation of your case and discuss the options available to you going forward. To schedule your free burn injury consultation, call our Austin, TX, office at (512) 732-2727.