Injured on the Job and Wondering How to Recover All Damages?

BY MALA SHARMA

If you or someone you know has been injured while working, it is important to act immediately in order to properly recover all damages, including economic expenses, mental anguish, physical pain, loss of income, and more. Having the proper information and support from a qualified attorney will help you fight stubborn insurance companies and defendants who try everything in their will to avoid paying you a just compensation owed.

The first question is to find out, from the Texas Department of Insurance, if the employer company has worker’s compensation which provides payment to injured employees from accidents on the job even if they are the reason for the accident. If so, the injured employee may file a workers compensation claim. However, Texas does not require all companies to have worker’s compensation and some companies may choose private insurance coverage or may have a self-funded insurance plan. In these situations, the injured employee would have to file a claim through the employer’s relevant policy. On the other hand, some companies do not even carry any insurance coverage. As such, claims would need to be directly against the employer.

Often, finding the correct defendant name and service address is not easy and more research would need to be done to pursue a civil judgment against the proper defendant, for all economic and non-economic damages incurred.

When a company does not have worker’s compensation, an employee need only prove 1% negligence against the employer to recover all damages, including any and all ambulance expense, hospital bill, emergency physician’s fee, therapy, MRI’s, orthopedic bills, neurology bills, counseling, prescription, lost wages, mental anguish, and physical pain. Mental anguish and physical pain, also known as ‘pain and suffering’, is difficult to prove. Mental anguish and physical pain claims from a work injury accident include difficulty with daily activities, continuous treatment, anxiety, depression, permanent disability or disfigurement, and the loss of enjoyment of life. There is no formula specified how to compute mental anguish and physical pain and insurance companies are not required to offer mental anguish and physical pain payments without a jury but most often multiply economic damages to quantify the amount. Although mental anguish claims are not adequately calculated by the insurance, a qualified attorney will fight to have all damages valued for full and just compensation deserved by forcing the insurance company to pay the full value now or be exposed to potentially much higher award at trial! It is important to have an attorney by your side with insight and experience needed to confidently move your case forward, help you understand all your rights available when hurt on the job, and to collect your fair compensation.

About the Author: Mala Sharma has been practicing family law and personal injury with her family at the Law Offices of Sharma & Associates, founded in 1997. Mala is chair of the American Bar Association GP Solo and GP Solo YLD division, Board member of the Houston Trial Lawyers Association, President Emeritus of the Houston Northwest Bar Association, and prior board member of the South Asian Bar Association. She is also a member of the Houston Bar Association. Mala has also been selected as 10 Best Attorneys by the American Institute of Personal Injury Attorneys, Top 40 Under 40 by the National Trial Lawyers, and also selected Texas Rising Star by Super Lawyers.

This material is available for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice. You should contact an attorney to obtain advice with respect to any particular issue or problem. If you require advice or assistance, you may contact her at office number 281-893-8644 or by email at mala@sharmalaws.net to schedule a free consultation to discuss your case.

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