No matter the industry you are employed in, workplace accidents can happen. Even minor injuries can cause major disruptions to your life. Lost income from taking time off work to recover and expensive medical bills for treating the injury can quickly lead to financial instability.
Under Texas common law and federal standards set by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), it is an employer’s duty to ensure a reasonably safe workplace and take measures to prevent work accidents. When these standards are not met by your company or other parties, you have legal options to recover compensation.
Texas Worker’s Compensation
Employees injured on the job are entitled to benefits under the Texas Workers’ Compensation Act, including medical expenses, lost wages, and disability benefits. If an employee is killed on the job, his or her spouse and minor children may be entitled to lifetime “death benefits.” However, these benefits are only available if the worker’s employer carries workers’ compensation insurance, which is not required in Texas. While it is encouraged, many companies do not carry this coverage, leaving injured workers in a precarious position.
In some cases, employers offer other benefit plans to compensate for on-the-job injuries, but these “fake comp” plans typically offer fewer benefits than workers’ compensation. Other companies fail to provide any coverage at all.
Whether a company chooses to buy a workers’ compensation insurance policy or not, there is still an obligation to provide a safe work environment, safe equipment, and proper training for workers. When an employer fails to live up to these expectations, he may be held liable for the damages caused by your injuries.
Types of Work Accident Claims
The most common types of accidents that occur in the Texas workplace include:
- Construction accidents. These sites are rife with dangers, particularly when employers fail to set and maintain safety standards. Common accidents include falls, crane collapses, equipment malfunctions, forklift accidents, and power tool injuries.
- Oilfield accidents. The oil industry carries many hazards. Accidents commonly result from equipment failures, fire, explosions, drilling malfunctions, inadequate training, insufficient safety manners, and violations of federal and state safety standards.
- Refinery accidents. Injuries in chemical plants and refineries often result from fires, explosions, and chemical exposure that occur because of improper maintenance, poor safety practices, and OSHA violations.
- Industrial accidents. Common accidents in industrial settings such as manufacturing plants include falls, being struck by objects, repetitive motion injuries, chemical exposure, being caught in or compressed by equipment, and even electrocution.
Common Injuries Suffered in the Workplace
The possible injuries that can occur in the workplace are practically endless. The most common are:
- Cuts and bruises
- Repetitive motion injuries
- Broken or fractured bones
- Back and neck injuries
- Arm and leg injuries
- Loss of limbs or digits
- Work-induced heart attack or stroke
- Partial or total paralysis
- Eye injuries, including blindness
If you have suffered these injuries on the job, you may be entitled to compensation for your medical bills, lost wages and lost earning capacity, pain and suffering, and more. At the Law Offices of Raúl A. Guajardo, we can help you seek the maximum compensation allowed under the law for your accident claim.