If you have been injured at work you may be entitled to workers compensation benefits and further may be entitled to common law damages if the injury resulted from your employers or a co-worker’s negligence.
A work place injury will be covered by a statutory payment which will ensure you receive income whilst you are unable to work. Further if you are permanently impaired you will receive a lump sum payment. This will be paid to you whether there is fault or not on the employer’s part. Further you will likely be covered even if travelling to or from your place of work, when the injury occurs.
If there is fault involved on the employer’s or co-worker’s part, then you may be entitled to additional common law damages. With serious injuries you may be able to recover a lump sum for a permanent impairment under the statutory claim and then further claim common law damages. With less serious injuries however it will be necessary for you to make an election on whether you wish to take a statutory lump sum payment or issue a common law damages claim. Southside Legal can advise you fully in relation to your option and what would be the most sensible course of action to adopt. You should obtain legal advice before signing any documentation from the employer’s insurer. Otherwise you could possibly lose your right to claim common law damages. Southside Legal will guide you through the legal process and carefully explain the options available to you.
Damages in common law claims can be recovered for a range of items including general damages (pain and suffering), out-of-pocket expenses, economic loss both past and future, rehabilitation expenses, gratuitous services provided to you in certain circumstances and for various other items depending on the circumstances.
If you do decide to take action for damages you should note that all employers are required by law to have Workers Compensation Insurance. The effect of this is that if damages have to be paid it is the insurance company who pays the compensation to the employee. Further, if you do pursue a claim your employer is not entitled to treat you any differently and they could not discriminate against you at your work place.
On some occasions the employer’s insurer may dispute that your injury relates to your work place activities and in these circumstances it may be necessary to appeal to the Workers Compensation Regulator. Southside Legal can advise you of all your rights in this regard.
Claims for compensation for a work place injury can be complex and again you should contact Southside Legal as soon as possible as there are strict time limits for making a claim.
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