Individuals who have suffered injuries caused by workplace safety problems in a Charleston office or building could seek compensation for their damages through a workers’ compensation claim. Likewise, consulting with seasoned legal counsel could be an important step toward recovering the benefits and financial support you and your family need.
If you have suffered any injury at work, you may want to think about contacting an attorney who has previously worked on cases involving Charleston workplace safety in offices and buildings. An experienced workplace safety lawyer could help you understand your legal rights and explain options you may have for seeking fair restitution.
Workers’ Compensation Claims for Workplace Injuries
Employees who suffer on-the-job injuries or long-term medical conditions in Charleston offices and buildings could seek medical benefits and financial support through South Carolina’s Workers’ Compensation Law, as established in South Carolina Code of Laws Title 42. Benefits available through workers’ compensation may include:
- Medical treatment
- Disability compensation based on lost wages
- Compensation for permanent losses and/or disfigurement
- Physical therapy
- Vocational rehabilitation
Since various deadlines and other legal requirements apply to all workers’ compensation claims, anyone injured on the job may want to seek legal assistance as soon as possible. A skilled Charleston attorney knowledgeable in workplace safety issues in offices and buildings could investigate an individual case and advise about available actions to take to seek needed compensation and benefits.
Limitations of Charleston Workers’ Compensation Claims
When someone is injured on the job, workers’ compensation could be the only remedy that they to recover for their injuries. This is part of the trade-off of the workers’ compensation system—while an injured employer does not have to prove fault and recovery is generally automatic, the types of compensation available are limited by law.
For example, workers’ compensation pays only two-thirds of an injured workers’ average weekly wages, up to a maximum amount of $838.21 per week as of 2018. This is true even if the employee is out of work and unable to earn any wages. However, while an injured employee cannot recover temporary disability benefits for the first seven days of missed work, an exception could be made if they are out of work for 14 or more days.
When someone permanently loses use of part of their body or an injury causes disfigurement or scaring, compensation is determined by set schedules and other regulations and not the evidence of how the loss has specifically the injured worker and their ability to pursue employment in the future. Workers’ compensation also does not allow an injury plaintiff to recover for their pain and suffering, nor are punitive damages ever available under workers’ compensation.
Potential Personal Injury Claims Following a Workplace Injury
Given the limitations of the workers’ compensation system, a skilled lawyer could look carefully at whether a party other than the employer may be liable for an injury that takes place in an office or building. These are called third-party claims and may be brought as a personal injury claim. Responsible third-parties could include building owners, other contractors who were on site, maintenance contractors, equipment manufacturers, or others.
That being said, a successful personal injury claim for a workplace injury requires evidence that the third-party owed the injured worker a duty of care and that it was at a minimum partially at fault for the injury. When appropriate, a third-party claim could allow an injured worker or their family to seek compensation that would not be available through the workers’ compensation system.
Learn More About Maintaining Workplace Safety in Charleston Office Buildings
If you are an office worker and have suffered a workplace injury or occupational illness, you may need professional help from a workers’ compensation lawyer. A legal advocate who understands Charleston workplace safety in offices and buildings could be a valuable ally as you seek to recover from your injury and keep your career on track.
Workplace injury claims can be complex and confusing, but an experienced attorney could advise you about your legal rights including bringing a workers’ compensation claim, appealing a denied claim, or other legal options. For more information, call today to schedule a consultation.