A workplace injury can be devastating, leaving you out of work and struggling to meet your financial obligations while you recover. You may even be unable to return to your former role or profession. Oklahoma Workers’ Compensation provides certain benefits when you are injured or disabled at work. But is there ever a scenario when you can sue your employer after an Oklahoma workplace injury?
Oklahoma Workers’ Compensation Provisions
Your Oklahoma employer is likely required to carry Workers’ Compensation insurance that provides benefits for you if you become injured at work. These benefits include:
- Medical treatment for work-related injuries or illnesses
- Payments for wages while you cannot work
- Compensation for permanent disabilities
- Death benefits for the families of workers who died due to a work-related injury
- Vocational retraining and/or job placement for workers who are unable to return to their prior occupation
Filing a qualifying claim under Oklahoma Workers’ Compensation generally prohibits you from filing a personal injury lawsuit against your employer. By carrying Workers’ Compensation insurance and filing a claim so you can receive benefits, they have complied with the law and done what is expected.
Can I Ever Sue My Employer Over a Work-related Injury?
At times, exceptions to this general rule barring a lawsuit against your employer may allow you to pursue legal action. These are rare but possible. An Oklahoma Workers’ Compensation Attorney from the Armstrong Law Firm, PLC, can provide more information. The most common exceptions allowing you to sue your employer over a work-related injury include:
- Your employer doesn’t carry Workers’ Compensation insurance as required by law. In this case, an injured worker can file a civil lawsuit against their employer over negligence. You have the burden of proof to prove that negligence exists.
- Intentional conduct by your employer causes your injuries. Oklahoma employees can pursue damages if their employer intentionally engaged in misconduct that directly caused harm. This can include willfully violating federal safety standards, like OSHA regulations in the workplace.
Are There Other Scenarios When I Can Pursue Compensation After an Injury On the Job?
Other exceptions may allow you to pursue a personal injury lawsuit against other involved parties after suffering an injury at work. These can include:
- Third-party involvement: If a third party is involved in your at-work injury, you can pursue compensation for your losses from that third party. For example, this could be an outside contractor performing services at your place of work and their negligence causes you to become injured.
- Defective product injuries: If you were injured due to a defective tool, piece of equipment, substance, or other device at work, you may be able to pursue compensation from the manufacturer under product liability laws.
Get Seasoned Help with a Workplace injury in Oklahoma
Although you may rarely be able to sue your employer or another party over a work-related injury, you should still consult with an experienced Oklahoma Workers’ Compensation Attorney. Many factors are in play when you become injured and file a Workers’ Compensation claim through your employer. A seasoned attorney in your corner can make a substantial difference in getting your claim filed properly and ensuring that you receive all the benefits to which you are entitled.
It doesn’t take much for a claim to become complicated and require legal guidance and representation. The Armstrong Law Firm, PLC, in Tulsa can handle the details of your claim and benefits while you focus on recovering from your injuries. We can also review your case and handle any third-party or other lawsuits that may entitle you to compensation for your injuries plus pain and suffering.
Contact The Armstrong Law Firm, PLC, today to schedule your free consultation with a talented and knowledgeable Oklahoma Workers’ Compensation Attorney who can help.