The majority of workplace injuries are caused by accidents. From injuring
your hand while working with heavy machinery, to slipping on water spilled
in your work station, workplace injuries occur all of the time. One source
of workplace injuries that are often overlooked are those that have been
caused by workplace violence. According to OSHA, 2 million workers make
claims about workplace violence every year. Below, we explain how to get
workers’ compensation if you were assaulted on the job.
Workplace Violence & Your Workers’ Comp Claim
Most states allow workers to file a claim if the violent incident was work
related. This means you’ll have to prove that the assailant attacked
you while you were performing your work duties. However, some states also
require that the motivation for the assault must be work related and not
If you’re working at a movie theater and your ex-girlfriend’s
new boyfriend comes in and assaults you because he doesn’t like
you, courts would likely consider this kind of attack to be purely personal
and ineligible for workers’ comp.
If a customer at the theater you are working at attacks you because the
movie is sold out, the attack would most likely be considered work related
and would qualify for workers’ comp benefits.
Will Fault Affect My Workers’ Comp Claim?
Most work related
injuries are eligible for benefits, even if the injury was your fault. However, there are exceptions when
it comes to claiming workers’ comp benefits for an assault. The
biggest exception is that you will be ineligible for compensation if you
were the aggressor of the conflict.
How Do I Apply for Workers’ Comp?
If you have bene injured in an assault at work, you should immediately
see a doctor to have your injuries assessed and treated. Make sure the
doctor you visit documents all of the injuries you suffered and how much
your treatment will cost.
After you have seen a doctor, you should inform your employer of the incident
as soon as you can. States have statutes of limitations for how quickly
you need to inform your employer about your injuries, so the sooner you
tell them the better it will be for you workers’ comp case.
Once your injury has been documented by a physician and your employer knows
about your situation, you should consult with an experienced attorney
to get help filing your claim for benefits. A skilled lawyer can make
sure that your claim is properly handled and that you get all the forms
of compensation you are entitled to.
Contact our New York workers’ compensation lawyers
to set up a free consultation today.