Personal Injury vs. Workers’ Compensation

The lines can become blurred between personal injury cases and worker’s compensation claims. It isn’t uncommon for injuries to happen during work hours, but what factors should you take into consideration before filing a claim?

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Some people think personal injury and workers’ compensation claims are synonymous. In reality, there are a few significant differences. In the event that you were injured while at work or during work hours, understanding the contrast between the two claims is paramount to finding the best outcome for your case.

If you or a loved one was injured on the job, they may be entitled to compensation. FCA Legal Funding can help set up with pre-settlement funding so you can afford the best representation imaginable. Call TODAY: (310) 424-5176

Differences between personal injury lawsuits and workers’ compensation claims

Punitive Damages: One of the most obvious drawbacks when filing a workers’ compensation claim is that you cannot recover punitive damages. Typically, workers’ compensation covers lost wages and medical expenses, but recovering monies beyond that can be nearly impossible, or at best, an uphill battle.

Pain and Suffering: Another legal avenue that cannot be explored during a workers’ comp claim is pain and suffering. However, workers’ compensation guidelines differ from state-to-state. One of the few exceptions to the rule is in California. Workers’ compensation laws in California allow workers to sue for emotional distress, as opposed to pain and suffering. 

Compensation: While workers’ compensation cases have a lot of limitations, they do start to pay out almost immediately if you are eligible for benefits. This could include permanent disability compensation if you are indefinitely unable to work as a result of your injury or injuries. Conversely, personal injury claims cover a wide range of damages including pain and suffering and punitive damages. Another upside to filing a personal injury claim is that they have been known to pay-out in lump sums, rather than over time. That may take longer, but if you have the ability to wait, it may be a more appealing strategy to explore.

Your Right to Sue: Simply put, you can’t file a personal injury lawsuit if you are already going through the motions of a workers’ compensation case. You cannot actively collect on a workers’ compensation settlement, without forfeiting further legal recourse. You must choose one or the other.

If you or a loved one was injured on the job, they may be entitled to compensation. FCA Legal Funding can help set up with pre-settlement funding so you can afford the best representation imaginable. Call TODAY: (310) 424-5176

How to Successfully File a Claim

It is all situational, as most cases are, but knowing how to proceed is a huge advantage. Establishing fault is one of the biggest factors in deciding whether or not you should file a workers’ compensation claim or a personal injury claim. In order for you to successfully file a personal injury lawsuit, you would have to prove that someone else was negligent or at fault. Whereas, in a workers’ compensation case, your employer wouldn’t even have to be present for you to file a claim. It is important to reiterate that workers’ comp only covers specific injuries and limits the reach of your lawsuit.

Most employees just assume that since they were injured at work, or while fulfilling work obligations, that the only legal recourse is to file a workers’ compensation case. But in some instances, depending on the circumstances, it is advisable to file a personal injury claim with your employer. The bottom line is that you need legal assistance when you maneuver through any personal injury or workers’ compensation case.

If you or a loved one was injured on the job, they may be entitled to compensation. FCA Legal Funding can help set up with pre-settlement funding so you can afford the best representation imaginable. Call TODAY: (310) 424-5176

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2 Responses
  1. My cousin was just injured while on the job because of another co-workers mistake and he wants to make sure that he gets his worker’s compensation. He would love to work with a professional attorney so that he can get the results he wants. I’ll be sure to tell him that he can start being paid immediately if he is eligible for benefits.

  2. Thank you for explaining to me that worker’s compensation has very specific qualifications; however, the payout could be very rapid. About a week ago, I was talking to my father, and he mentioned that he heard his friend was having a hard time deciding if he should file for worker’s comp. It seems to me that lawyers would be able to help determine if an individual has a case.

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