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Non-Subscriber Claims in Texas

When you suffer an on-the-job injury, you’ll likely claim workers’ comp benefits. However, some Texas companies don’t subscribe to the workers’ compensation system, leaving injured victims with no choice but to sue their employers to recover the compensation they need.

Non-Subscriber Claims vs. Workers’ Comp

Many states require employers to offer workers’ compensation benefits. These benefits help cover a worker’s lost wages and medical expenses related to an on-the-job injury. Workers’ comp would cover burial expenses and provide death benefits for the decedent’s dependents if a worker suffered a fatal injury.

Although this compensation is mainly for the injured employee’s benefit, it also protects the employer from personal injury lawsuits.

But Texas doesn’t require employers to purchase workers’ compensation insurance. These companies are called non-subscribers, allowing victims to recover far more than workers’ comp allows. The main difference is that you must establish fault to win your claim.

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What Can You Recover in a Non-Subscriber Claim?

Although workers’ comp benefits are intended to offer you some relief, your total compensation is limited. Texas’ disability income benefits are set by law for a specified period and dollar amount. The compensation you receive depends on the severity of your injuries and your current income, and you might only receive a percentage of your average weekly wages.

This all changes in a non-subscriber claim. By filing a personal injury lawsuit, you could recover for how your injuries have impacted your life. You could be entitled to the following damages:

  • Physical pain
  • Mental suffering
  • Current and future medical expenses
  • Scarring and disfigurement
  • Diminished quality of life
  • Loss of a loved one (if the victim suffered fatal injuries)
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Do You Work for a Non-Subscriber?

Since Texas doesn’t require employers to subscribe to workers’ comp, you could be working for one of the many non-subscriber companies in the state. Some well-known Texas non-subscribers include:

  • ExxonMobil
  • Shell
  • Walmart
  • Target
  • Amazon
  • BP America
  • United Airlines
  • Hewlett Packard

This is by no means an exhaustive list of non-subscriber companies. If you’re wondering if you work for a non-subscriber, the Texas Department of Insurance provides a list of known non-subscribers. Your employee contract should also disclose your employer’s insurance status.


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What to Do After a Non-Subscriber Work Injury

Recovering compensation after a work injury might look different if your employer doesn’t offer workers’ compensation. Follow these steps to recover from your work injury:

Seek Medical Attention

Your first step in recovery is to seek immediate medical attention. Accidents on oilfields, construction sites, and other workplaces could produce catastrophic, sometimes life-threatening, injuries. However, your injuries don’t have to be catastrophic to require prompt medical care. Your injuries may seem minor shortly after your accident, but they could worsen in the days following. Ignoring injuries could also show the at-fault parties that you don’t need compensation, which could hurt your claim.

Gather Available Evidence

If you can, take photos and videos of the accident scene. For example, if a walkway was blocked by an obstruction that caused you to trip and fall, make sure you photograph that. This evidence will be invaluable to your injury claim. You should also take pictures of bruising or anything that shows the severity of your injuries.

Report Your Injury

You typically have 30 days to report your injury to claim your workers’ comp benefits. This 30-day limit doesn’t apply to non-subscriber claims. However, that doesn’t mean you should wait to report your injury. Your incident report could be used as evidence in your case. It explains how the accident occurred and could indicate who’s at fault.

Don’t Sign a Post-Injury Waiver

Your non-subscribing employer might approach you with a waiver stating that they will offer you benefits and medical treatment. Do not sign this document. Although they may offer to cover your expenses, they’re trying to protect themselves from a lawsuit. Signing this document prevents you from suing them for how your injuries have impacted your life.

File a Personal Injury Lawsuit

You have two years to file your personal injury claim in Texas. This may feel like a lot of time, but you’d be surprised how quickly it could pass when you’re busy recovering from your work injury. Failing to file within this period will disqualify you from recovering compensation from your employer.

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Can You Lose Your Job if You Sue Your Employer?

You might feel that suing your employer could make you vulnerable to retaliation. But you have every right to recover compensation if your employer’s negligence caused your injuries, and you shouldn’t have to worry about losing your job if you do so.

Texas law protects you from retaliation attempts from your employer after you sue them. This includes denying you a promotion, increased surveillance, unjustified negative evaluations, and termination.

Injured While Working for a Non-Subscriber? Call Us Today

Whether your injuries are minor or significant, you could recover compensation from your employer if they’re found to be negligent. The work injury lawyers at Kemmy Law Firm will personally investigate your case to determine fault and hold all liable parties accountable.

Contact us today and schedule your free consultation by calling (432) 400-0000.

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Get a free consultation. We do not charge up-front fees, and you owe nothing unless you recover compensation.

When you work with us at Kemmy Law Firm, you are working with a family run firm with more than 50 years of combined experience. We are dedicated and successful trial attorneys practicing in West TX, Hobbs, NM, Midland-Odessa, and across the Permian Basin. Our team handles everything from catastrophic injury claims to complex business matters. We are here to fight for you. We dedicate our time and attention to your case and use every resource available to maximize your claim and obtain the best possible outcome.