WNY's Workers' Compensation Attorneys

Worker’s Compensation or Personal Injury Lawsuit: Which should I file?

Many people confuse worker’s compensation with personal injury claims.  The two are not one in the same.  Before you file for worker’s compensation benefits you should know and understand the difference between the two and determine which better fits the situation you are in.


When to File for Worker’s Compensation

Worker’s compensation is an insurance policy that employers are required by law to have.  This policy provides coverage in the form of monetary benefits to any employee that is injured at work.  The amount of benefits received is based on the employee’s wages prior to the work accident.

With a worker’s compensation claim, the employee does not have to prove that their injuries were sustained as a result of something their employer failed to do.  They only need to prove that the injury occurred while they were at work performing a function of their job.  When you receive worker’s compensation benefits in most cases, you are forfeiting your right to sue your employer for a personal injury claim.

Most people injured at work will find that a worker’s compensation claim is the best route for them to take however, if you suspect your injury was something your employer could have prevented, continue reading to learn more about your options for filing a personal injury lawsuit.

When to File a Personal Injury Lawsuit

If you are injured at work and feel that your injury was someone else’s fault or the result of negligence on behalf of your employer, you may have a personal injury case.  Before you make this determination, it is important to consult with an experienced worker’s compensation attorney to determine what the best course of action would be.

With a personal injury case, you will generally be required to prove that a third-party (not your employer) caused or contributed to your injury.  There are many defenses that an employer can claim in order to prevent themselves from having to pay a settlement so before you go the personal injury route, you should be sure you have a solid case.

If you have questions as to whether or not you should file for worker’s compensation or a personal injury lawsuit, contact us for a free consultation.  We will review your information and help determine which route may be better for you to pursue.

About The Author

At Gielowski, Federice & Caligiuri, LLP, we are committed to serving Western New York’s injured workers by providing a point of contact relating to all of the major legal issues which our clients will typically face.

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