Who Can I Sue for a Burn Injury at Work?
If you’ve suffered a burn injury at work, it’s likely that your sole remedy is filing a claim through workers’ compensation. Be sure you report your injury to a supervisor and get treatment right away. Once treatment is stable, you should contact a lawyer who specializes in workers’ compensation – it’s a tricky process with a lot of traps, so you need an expert in your corner.
What is workers’ compensation?
In Colorado, almost all public and private employers with one or more full-time or part-time employees are required to provide workers’ compensation coverage. Workers’ compensation is a form of insurance coverage that is entirely paid by the employer—in other words, it is not deducted from your wages or salary. That insurance should pay for your medical benefits, partial wage replacement during periods of temporary disability, and any permanent impairment as well.
One of the advantages of workers’ compensation is the relatively quick access to benefits. This is a no-fault system, which means that it is not necessary to prove that your employer was negligent or in some way at fault for the accident. If your burn injury accident happened during the “course and scope” of employment, you can receive payments through this system at least every two weeks, regardless of who was at fault for the accident. On the other hand, the workers’ compensation system was created to protect employers as well by limiting their liability. For instance, an employee cannot receive compensation for pain and suffering from workers’ comp. Also, workers’ comp may bar you from bringing a lawsuit against your employer in most situations.
If your employer is indeed covered by workers’ compensation insurance and if you wish to take this route in paying for your burn injuries and other damages related to your workplace accident, you will need to file all necessary forms correctly and within the right timeframe. If you fail to follow all rules and procedures, or if you fail to file your claim soon enough, you might lose some of your benefits. A Denver workers’ compensation attorney like the one at The Law Offices of Dianne L. Sawaya LLC, can help you to make sure you are taking the proper steps.