Our Lawyers Will Identify Who’s Responsible
In Texas, where you may not have workers’ comp insurance, identifying the at-fault and liable parties is essential. If you have workers’ comp insurance, who was at fault is, typically, not relevant to receiving benefits. However, understanding who was negligent informs you as to whether you are entitled to file a personal injury lawsuit and against whom.
When you come to us, we will immediately investigate what happened. We will gather the accident report, photos, video footage, and witness statements. We’ll use all of this and other relevant evidence to pinpoint who was careless or reckless in causing the accident and your injuries.
Work Injury Compensation
If you were injured by your employer or a coworker, and workers’ compensation does not cover you, then you must file a personal injury lawsuit against your employer to obtain compensation. If someone from outside your employer injured you, then you must file a third-party liability lawsuit against that individual or company.
Through a lawsuit against your employer or another individual or business, a work injury lawyer will demand you recover your:
- Past and future medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Scarring and disfigurement
- Physical limitations
- Reduced earning capacity
- Lower quality of life
To obtain work injury compensation through a lawsuit, you have to establish the value of your damages. Damages can be categorized as economic or non-economic injuries. We utilize your medical bills, receipts, pay stubs, tax returns, and other documentation to prove the value of your economic damages.
Of course, economic damages are not the only kinds of losses that victims of work accidents suffer. Accident victims suffer non-economic damages as well, like pain and suffering. However, unlike economic losses, non-economic damages do not show up on receipts or bills, and so they can be more challenging to establish.
To prove your non-economic damages, we may ask you to take pictures of your visible injuries each day while you recover and to keep a daily journal regarding your pain and discomfort levels and the other consequences of being injured on the job. If we take your case to trial, we want to be able to show the jury how these injuries have impacted you and your family’s daily lives and future.
Proving damages also may require hiring a medical, economic, vocational, or other experts who can testify as to your inability to work, future medical expenses, and lost income.
Texas Work Accident Claims
The law gives you the right to file a personal injury lawsuit against another party if you can establish that they were negligent. You can also file suit against your employer if workers’ comp does not cover you, and another employee’s negligence was to blame for your injuries.
Negligence is a breach of a duty of care that causes another party harm. Typically, this is a breach of the duty of ordinary care, which requires individuals to act like reasonably prudent people would under the same or similar circumstances. A party that fails to act reasonably and prudently given the circumstances and causes harm is negligent.
Filing a work injury claim based on negligence is not simple, though. You need to determine your rights under both the workers’ compensation system and Texas’ personal injury law. Depending on the circumstances, you may need to pursue both types of claims. Our attorneys have extensive experience with evaluating work injury claims and guiding employees through the process of obtaining benefits and compensation.
A Third-Party Liability Lawsuit
Our work injury attorneys can guide you through a personal injury lawsuit against your employer or third-party liability lawsuit against another person or business.
Once we collect enough evidence, we will typically file a lawsuit against the liable party. During litigation, we will fully utilize the discovery process. Depositions, interrogatories, and requests for documents can provide us with a wealth of information to support our client.
Following discovery, we might enter into negotiations with the defendant’s insurance company. We are aggressive negotiators and will fight for the maximum compensation possible for your work-related injuries.
When an insurer refuses to settle for a fair amount, the next step is to go to trial. We are not afraid to go head-to-head with the liable party in court. We have handled many workplace accidents and injury cases, and we know how juries respond to careless and reckless employers.
With our deep understanding of Texas law and comprehensive experience, we are often successful in recovering compensation for our clients. In the past two years alone, we have won more than $50 million in verdicts and settlements.
A Workers’ Compensation Claim
If workers’ compensation covers you, notify your employer of your injury as soon as possible. Then, file an Employee’s Claim for Compensation for a Work-Related Injury or Occupational Disease (DWC Form-041) with the Texas Division of Workers’ Compensation.
The DWC then notifies your employer, and the workers’ comp insurer will accept or deny your claim.
When workers’ compensation insurance covers injured workers, they may be entitled to certain income benefits:
- Temporary Income Benefits (TIBs): If you are temporarily disabled for more than seven days, you can receive 70% of the difference between your average weekly wages and the wages you are able to earn after your on-the-job injury.
- Impairment Income Benefits (IIBs): If you have a permanent partial disability that impacts your income, you may receive IIBs. The duration of IIBs depends on your impairment rating (IR), which signals the degree to which your body is impaired. You receive three weeks of IIBs for every percentage of impairment. The amount is based on 70% of your average weekly wages.
- Supplemental Income Benefits (SIBs): If you have an IR of 15% or higher, have not returned to work or earn less than 80% of your pre-injury average weekly wages, are looking for work, and have not accepted a lump sum settlement, you can apply for SIBs. You must apply for these benefits every three months.
- Lifetime Income (LIBs): You can receive lifetime income if you lost an extremity, lost your vision, sustained a spinal cord injury and paralysis, suffered a TBI causing insanity or imbecility or suffered third-degree burns over 40% or more of your body. You are entitled to 75% of your average weekly wages with a 3% increase each year.
If your claim is accepted, the insurer will calculate your benefits. Talk with an attorney if your claim is denied or the insurer calculated your benefits incorrectly.