Employees in Colorado who suffer an injury on the job may be in shock and feel overwhelmed while dealing with their health and emotions. However, it is also important for victims to be aware of their right to compensation from their employers.
Every year there are at least 30,000 workers’ compensation claims filed in Colorado. If an employee is hurt on company property or engaged in company business, he or she has the right to compensation for injuries. This compensation could consist of:
- Workers’ compensation benefits; or
- Settlement or judgment in a personal injury lawsuit (Find out what your case might be worth).
Most employees have at their disposal the system of workers’ compensation, which is a “no fault” system. This means you can access the benefits even if you may have contributed to the cause of the accident without meaning to (contributory negligence).
However, the amounts provided under workers’ compensation can be quite low and victims are not paid for pain and suffering.
Your employer might be liable
There are workplace accident situations in Colorado where victims could sue an employer for damages, although there are very specific guidelines that you should be aware of:
- If your employer does not carry workers’ compensation but is supposed to under Colorado law, you could sue your employer to gain compensation to help with your workplace injuries.
- While some states do not allow an employee to sue for an employer intentionally causing your injuries, Colorado does. This applies for exceptionally egregious conduct by your employer, such as:
- You were hurt because your employer failed to provide safety gear at a construction site.
- A company owner engages in a physical altercation with the employee or the employer is found to be grossly negligent in hiring an employee who caused assault or injury.
- Dual capacity allows a worker to sue an employer when the employer has a second legal relationship/affiliation which has harmed the worker. For example:
- The employer owns the property which has dangerous conditions that harmed the employee.
- A company doctor causes harm to an employee.
- The company manufactures a product for public sale that injures the worker.
- Wrongful termination: If you are fired after filing a worker’s compensation claim, you may have basis for a lawsuit.
Other legal remedies in Colorado
There may be cases where lawsuits against another party or against your employer’s workers’ compensation insurer are possible. Please see our full article on workplace accidents in Colorado for more information.
Recovering from a workplace accident can take many painful years of costly treatment. Even if you don’t intend to bring a lawsuit, a workers’ comp attorney can help you get the most benefit out of your insurance claim. Find an attorney using our Colorado Personal Injury Law Firms Directory.
Have you been injured in a workplace accident? Did you consider legal action against your employer? Please share your story below.