Workplace accidents happen regularly across the country in all types of work environments. In fact, 1.8 million workers suffered work-related injuries and were treated in emergency departments in 2020. As the second most populous state in the country, Texas has a high incidence of occupational injuries and fatalities every year. Texas private industry employers reported 178,900 total nonfatal workplace injuries and illnesses for 2021. Some occupations and industries – such as construction workers – are more dangerous and thus put their workers at an increased risk of injury and death than others. Unfortunately, injured employees often have no idea what to do after they are hurt on the job.
When a worker suffers a life-changing injury, getting full and fair financial compensation is essential. An attorney can help investigate your incident and ensure that the strong evidence needed to secure maximum compensation is found and presented in the best possible way. Austin work injury attorney Ashley Applewhite offers free consultations to injured workers in need of legal counsel.
Texas Workers Rights after a Workplace Injury
Texas repeatedly shows some of the country’s highest numbers of occupational injury cases and fatalities. The Lone Star State is the only state in the country that does not require companies to subscribe to the workers’ compensation system of insurance. This means employers can either self-insure or not have insurance. Injured workers working for employers who do subscribe to workers’ comp are usually not able to sue their employer for damages related to an on-the-job injury, but in some situations – such as if the employer intentionally caused the injury or if a third party was responsible for the injury – a workplace injury lawsuit may be possible. It is very hard, if not impossible, to identify all of the potentially responsible parties after a work injury, so it’s always worth it to talk to a personal injury lawyer about your options in a free consultation.
Steps To Take After a Work Injury
If you or a loved one suffered serious injuries on the job, there are several steps you should take as soon as possible, including:
- Report the work injury to your employer as soon as possible after the accident in writing and also be sure to tell your supervisor what happened.
- Seek medical attention as soon as possible.
- Keep detailed records of all medical treatment you receive, including the date, name of the provider, and a description of the treatment. Also be sure to keep copies of any medical records and medical bills you receive from any and all medical providers.
- Keep records of any lost wages or other expenses related to your injury, such as transportation costs to medical appointments.
- Keep all correspondence with your employer and any other related parties, such as an insurance carrier, including any documents or forms they provide and any communications you have with them.
Types of Work Injuries
An accident at work can cause any number of injuries and even a wrongful death. Some of the most common work injuries we see in our personal injury practice include musculoskeletal injuries and:
- Neck injuries
- Back injuries
- Broken bones or fractures
- Cuts, bruises, and lacerations
- Crush injuries
- Eye injuries, including blindness
- Ligament, tendon, muscle, and other related injuries
- Spinal cord injuries with and without paralysis
- Head injuries, brain injuries, and traumatic brain injuries (TBI)
- Psychological injuries such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Respiratory injuries
- Toxic exposure injuries
- Permanent disability
- Fatality or wrongful death
These and other such occupational injuries are commonly caused by slips, trips, and falls, falls from a height, being struck by equipment, workplace motor vehicle accidents, fires and explosions, repetitive stress, and more.
Texas Personal Injury or Workers’ Compensation?
One of the most common issues that comes up in work injury cases is whether a claim can give rise to a personal injury lawsuit or if it is covered by worker’s comp and thus barred from being filed as a civil lawsuit. Job-related injuries generally fall under comp IF the employer has it even though they are technically injury claims. That being said, however, if a third party other than the direct employer was involved in any way, the injured party can file a lawsuit against them directly. If you are hurt at work and your employer is a workers’ compensation nonsubscriber, then you can also sue them directly. Basically, a work injury lawyer in Austin will help you identify which parties were potentially at fault and determine if those parties have workers’ comp coverage that bars a lawsuit.
Contact Work Injury Lawyer Ashley Applewhite for a Free Case Evaluation
There’s no shortage of ways people can get hurt at work, but there are various things employers can and should do to prevent their employees from suffering avoidable harm. If you or a loved one is in need of legal representation after a work injury, contact Ashley Applewhite for a free case evaluation. Our team provides high-quality legal representation, passionate advocacy, and we have the necessary resources to work up your case properly in order to maximize your financial recovery. Applewhite Firm PLLC prides itself on client communication and personal attention – each and every client matters to us and we will treat you like family. Call 512-617-9250 to discuss your legal options.