Thursday, October 9, 2014
Differences Between a Work Injury Claim and Personal Injury Claim
A lot of our clients are bummed to find out that they can’t sue anyone as a result of their injury. I’ve compiled the following list, which isn’t meant to be exhaustive, of some of the major differences between a work injury claim and a personal injury claim.
1. Work injury claims are for those who are injured while in the course and scope of their work.
2. In a personal injury claim, the Plaintiff has to prove that the offending party was negligent in some way which foreseeably caused their injury. In a work injury claim, the injured worker does not need to prove that anyone was negligent – in fact, an injured worker can collect workers compensation benefits even if they were injured as a result of their OWN negligence (or just plain stupidity…)
3. Damages in a workers compensation claim are limited to medical expenses and compensation for time lost from work (and in some cases, future lost earnings). In a personal injury case, an injured party can receive other damages, including pain and suffering, loss of consortium and other relationships, and punitive damages.
4. An injured worker can start receiving compensation for his or her injuries very shortly after an accident. A personal injury plaintiff sometimes has to wait years to receive any compensation.
5. Injured workers with compensable claims have a lifetime right to reopen their case upon a showing of a change in their condition. Personal injury plaintiffs have no such right.
6. There is no limit on payment on a workers compensation claim. Victims of personal injuries usually are limited in their recovery to whatever the “policy limits” are of the offending party’s insurance.
Attorney Chad Snow is the Founding Partner of Snow, Carpio & Weekley, PLC. He has helped thousands of injured workers in the State of Arizona. For a free consultation, please call our Phoenix Office at 602-532-0700 or our Tucson Office at 520-647-9000. You may also view our website at www.workinjuryaz.com for more information