In most cases, workers’ compensation insurance covers any injury you sustain at work regardless of fault. If you were attacked or assaulted in your place of employment, workers’ compensation does cover workplace violence in many cases.
If you instigate a fight or altercation, however, you may not be eligible for workers’ comp or its medical and wage loss benefits. Obtaining benefits under these circumstances can be complicated. The best way to understand your options is to consult a workers’ compensation lawyer who will explain the laws of your state and how they apply to your case.
When You Can Get Workers’ Compensation for Workplace Violence
A violent incident at work can leave you physically unable to return to work until your injuries heal. In addition, you might have serious fear that makes it hard to return to the scene. A workers’ compensation lawyer can help you apply for and receive medical care, psychological care, and wage loss benefits.
You may qualify if the physical violence occurred at your workplace or as part of your job. This includes:
- Being assaulted during a robbery
- Fisticuffs resulting from a workplace dispute
- An unprovoked attack from a coworker
An attorney will collect proof of the violence, its aftermath, and its cause to substantiate your request for benefits.
When You Cannot Get Workers’ Compensation for Workplace Violence
There can be certain circumstances when workplace violence and workers’ comp will not work together. For example, you cannot receive benefits for workplace violence if you were the aggressor of the event in question.
If you are alleged to be the aggressor but were not, your lawyer will delve into your case and uncover the real cause of the violent situation and identify the actual aggressor. If this is not possible, they will collect evidence, including interviewing witnesses to prove what happened and that you are entitled to appropriate benefits.
Types of Violence That Can Occur in a Workplace
According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) research, categories of workplace violence include:
- Criminal intent—Violence that occurs during the commission of a crime, including robberies, shoplifting, mugging, or trespassing
- Client-on-worker—Violence that occurs in patient care facilities or when customers and clients become disgruntled
- Worker-on-worker—Violence that occurs when coworkers are disgruntled, offended, seek perceived vindication, or feel humiliated
- Personal relationship—Violence that occurs when friends and relatives working together have a dispute or when a coworker is attacked by someone known to them in their workplace and they or others are injured
Specific acts and types of workplace violence under workers’ comp coverage can include:
- Physical assault
The first step to recovering workers’ comp benefits is to review your case with a local workers’ comp attorney. Many will review your case at no cost or obligation and explain your available options.
Financial Compensation You Can Receive From a Workers’ Comp Claim
Workers’ compensation benefits generally pay two-thirds of your average weekly salary during the period of time when you cannot work. The key to recovering accurate compensation is a precise calculation of your average weekly salary. This way, you receive benefits for the correct amount of time.
Your lawyer can help with this and fight to have your need for compensation accurately assessed. Wage loss benefit options include:
- Temporary partial disability
- Permanent partial disability
- Temporary total disability
- Permanent total disability
If a family member was fatally injured in an act of workplace violence, specific family members can also recover death benefits. Death benefits can cover funeral costs and compensate you for the loss of your loved one’s financial support, subject to state caps and limitations.
Medical Care You Can Receive From a Workers’ Compensation Claim
If you were a victim of workplace violence & workers’ compensation covers your medical expenses, you will receive all required care until you reach maximum medical improvement. It will cover:
- First responder care
- Emergency room fees
- Hospital stays
- Medical devices
Your workers’ comp attorney will track your medical care and expenses and collect your medical records and bills. This medical evidence can prove the cause of your injuries and support your right to receive benefits.
Contact Our Workers’ Comp Team If You Were a Victim of Workplace Violence
If you or a loved one suffered a workplace injury by a violent attack, you could be entitled to the medical and wage loss benefits of workers’ comp insurance. Applying for those benefits and navigating the application process can be challenging.
You do not have to find out if workers’ compensation benefits cover workplace violence or apply for it without legal guidance and support. Contact a member of our case review team at KJT Law Group by calling (818) 507-8525 to start the application process today.