Why Can’t You File Suit for a Workplace Injury in Georgia?

workers compensation

People may become victims of a workplace injury at any day. Of course, some jobs are more dangerous than others. One of the most frustrating things for people to hear is that they aren’t allowed to sue their employers for workplace injuries. They simply don’t understand why they’re limited to filing a worker’s comp claim. It doesn’t seem fair. If you got hurt at work, then your employer should be held responsible. Your Atlanta personal injury attorney understands your frustration.

Like it or not, that is the way it works in Georgia. There are only a few circumstances under which you can file a civil lawsuit for a workplace injury. These cases typically involve a third party, such as the manufacturer of a piece of faulty equipment. For the most part, if you suffer a workplace injury in Atlanta, your only option is to file a worker’s compensation claim. To do that, you may want the advice of a skilled Atlanta personal injury attorney.

The Remedy for a Workplace Injury is Through Workers Compensation

Every state, including Georgia, has set up a commission to handle workers compensation cases. The Georgia State Board of Workers Compensation oversees the workers comp process. When you’re initially hurt at work, you’re required to file a claim with your employer’s insurance company. Between your employer and the insurance adjustor, they’ll decide if your claim is valid. If it’s approved, you’ll start receiving your benefits right away. If, however, your claim is denied, then your Atlanta personal injury attorney will need to take legal action.

If your attorney has to file a worker’s comp lawsuit against your employer, they’ll essentially be appealing to that workers comp commission. This involves a process where a panel reviews your case to see if you should’ve been approved for benefits. If it still isn’t approved, your Atlanta personal injury attorney will file suit.

What is the Rationale Behind Workers Compensation Instead of a Civil Lawsuit?

It may not make sense to you, but there is a reason why workplace injuries are handled this way. If an employer were to be required to pay to defend lawsuits for every workplace accident, they would go out of business. Small and medium-sized firms could never withstand these costs. Rather than have this happen, the State decided to set up the workers compensation system. While the system isn’t perfect, it does allow employees to recover substantial benefits if they suffer a workplace accident.

The other reason it is handled this way is because there are a lot of fraudulent workers comp claims. Some employees set out to deceive their employers. It wouldn’t be fair to make a company pay thousands of dollars to defend these fraudulent cases on a case-by-case basis. Instead, it is handled by the Georgia State Board of Workers Compensation.

Your Atlanta Personal Injury Attorney May Still Be Able to Help

While most workplace injuries are covered by workers comp, there are times when you have the right to sue. These cases are typically limited to situations where a third party is responsible for your injury. It may also involve a case where your employer intentionally harmed you or was grossly negligent. If this is the case, your Atlanta personal injury attorney may be able to file a lawsuit on your behalf. However, these cases can be hard to prove. You want to make sure you don’t pursue a civil lawsuit only to find out that you needed to go through workers comp. If that happens, there’s always the chance that you’ll miss your time to file your claim.

Even if you’re limited to filing a worker’s comp claim, your lawyer can still help get you benefits. At a minimum, you’re going to receive medical care for your workplace injuries. You’re also going to receive replacement wages. Of course, workers comp won’t pay you 100% of what you were earning prior to the accident. However, your benefits will continue until you’re well enough to return to work.

Contact a Seasoned Atlanta Personal Injury Attorney Today

If you do suffer a workplace injury, one of the first things you should do is reach out to a skilled Atlanta personal injury attorney. This way, you know your workers comp claim will be handled properly from the start. You’ll also know that, if you need to file an appeal, it will be done properly. Call today and schedule your free, initial consultation. Let an experienced attorney guide you through the workers comp process.

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