Working in construction requires a significant amount of physical strength, and because the career requires that you put your body at remarkable risk, accidents can happen (and frequently do). Unfortunately, these construction accidents can lead to court cases that require you to go over what happened in detail to prove that you have a case against your employer. Many industrial accidents are due to negligence on the part of the employer. Being able to prove your case could be the key to a potential settlement and prevent similar accidents from happening in the future.
Proving Negligence in Industrial Lawsuits
Being involved in a workplace accident that occurred due to an employer’s negligence can be dehumanizing and uncomfortable. It would be reasonable to wonder if people will believe you and if you will still have a job afterward. There are some tried and true elements that must be proven to successfully claim negligence, and many of them can be proven through the paperwork you signed when hired (provided you were working “on the books”). To successfully prove employer negligence, you must show that:
- Your employer owed you a duty of care
- Your employer breached that duty of care
- You were injured due to the breach of that duty
- Your injury was foreseeable to a reasonable person as a potential consequence of breaching the duty of care
What is a Duty of Care?
In the relationship between employer and employee, a duty of care is considered the employer’s legal duty to take reasonable and necessary precautions to ensure the safety of their employees. There are various reasons why this duty might be breached. For example, failing to provide the proper supervision or protective gear, failing to ensure that the equipment required to execute your job functions is working as intended, and failing to provide proper training would be considered breaching the duty of care in most cases.
Types of Employer Negligence
Although negligence is often used as an umbrella term to encompass all instances of employer negligence, there are different categories that negligence cases can fall under depending on the context of the specific instance being litigated. These are some of the different types of employer negligence:
- Negligent Entrustment: If you are injured while working due to your employer delegating a job task to another employee who was incompetent or performed the task carelessly, you can argue that your injury was a result of negligent entrustment.
- Negligent Retention: If you sustain an injury at work because your company failed to provide you and/or other employees with sufficient training to complete the job accurately and safely, you could claim negligent retention in court.
- Negligent Supervision: If you can prove that your employer had reason to believe that you were incompetent or had a history of mental health issues or criminal activity at the time of the incident, you could claim negligent supervision.
Many workplace accidents take place due to decisions made that can fall under one or more types of employer negligence. Being knowledgeable regarding the various definitions of negligence in relation to workplace incidents can help your case.
Employer Responsibility When an Injury Occurs
Despite most companies successfully fulfilling their duties of care, workplace injuries still happen due to preventable, negligent mistakes. In the event of a workplace injury, there are certain steps your employer must take to document an on-the-job accident and provide you with assistance. If your company does not follow through with these steps after a workplace injury, they may be liable if the case goes to trial:
- Within 24 hours (or one business day) of the incident, the workplace must provide the injured party with the proper form to file a workers’ compensation claim.
- They must return the completed form back to the injured party within 24 hours of receiving it.
- The company must authorize the injured party for a sum up to $10,000 for medical care in the time between filing the workers’ compensation form and the form going into effect.
- Your employer must send a report of injury document to their workers’ compensation insurance handler or claims administrator within one working day. This document must include as much information about the instance as possible. Intentionally leaving out crucial details regarding the injury could lead to a misdemeanor charge for the company.
- Under worker’s compensation law, it is the legal responsibility of the company to report all injuries sustained by employees because of their work responsibilities.
Contact an Attorney Today
If you have been injured at work and believe your company is at fault, or believe they are not providing you with the proper aftercare, please contact the Belushin Law Firm, P.C. today. Attorney Belushin has over a decade of experience litigating personal injury cases and will work diligently to defend your case against large insurance companies. You can reach us at (888) 918-9890 or via our contact page.