Every day across the U.S., people suffer severe and potentially fatal injuries. If you’re hurt in a car accident, are harmed by a defective product or pharmaceutical, become injured or ill on the job, or for another reason, it’s vital to know that you have rights.
Depending on the circumstances surrounding your accident, compensation could be available to you to help you get medical treatment, pay your bills, and move on with your life. For example, if someone else’s negligence causes you harm, you could be owed compensation from the at-fault party through a personal injury claim. Similarly, if you lost a loved one in a tragic accident that was not their fault, you could pursue a wrongful death claim.
If you were injured or became ill at work, you could be eligible to seek worker’s compensation benefits, regardless of who was at fault. If a third-party, like a contractor, caused your accident, you could file a third-party claim.
With so many legal avenues for getting the fair compensation you’re owed after an accident, it’s crucial to understand how these accidents happen and what you can do to get the fair amount you’re owed if you’ve been hurt. Here, we’ve provided specific information about workplace accidents and wrongful death claims for you to better understand these cases.
The Dangers of Workplace Accidents
When a worker is hurt performing work-related duties or becomes ill due to workplace conditions, you might be entitled to benefits through your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance. Workers’ compensation exists to help injured workers get treatment and a portion of their wages as they recover. In exchange for this coverage, the employee typically waives the right to sue their employer for damages.
The most common causes of workplace injuries include:
- Lifting heavy objects
- Falling from heights
- Exposure to toxic substances
- Slips, trips, and falls
- Repetitive motion injuries
- Malfunctioning machinery or equipment
A workers’ compensation lawyer in Georgia can help you get the benefits you’re owed, and will make sure the insurance company or your employer don’t wrongly deny or diminish your claim.
Some of the benefits you could be entitled to include:
Disability benefits pay a percentage of the injured employee’s lost wages depending on the extent of the injury and qualifications they meet. There are four types of disability payments:
- Temporary total disability
- Temporary partial disability
- Permanent total disability
- Permanent partial disability
Medical benefits pay upfront for all necessary and reasonable treatment required to evaluate and treat the work-related injury or illness.
Death benefits are also available for surviving family members that lose a loved one in an accident. If another person’s actions caused your loved one’s death, you could seek compensation for funeral costs and a percentage of their lost wages before the fatal injury or illness.
How to Handle A Wrongful Death Case
If your loved one died because of someone else’s careless or intentional actions, you might be entitled to file a wrongful death lawsuit. According to Georgia law, wrongful death is a person’s death that another party causes with reckless, intentional, negligent, or criminal acts.
It’s crucial that you hire an experienced wrongful death lawyer in Georgia to help you with your case. The legal process is complicated and confusing for anyone who hasn’t gone through it before. If you choose not to seek legal representation, the opposing party might take advantage of that and intimidate you into dropping the case.
There are only a handful of family members that are allowed to file a wrongful death lawsuit. They include:
- Surviving spouse and minor children
- Surviving parents
- A personal representative of the deceased’s estate
Damages refer to the expenses and intangible losses suffered by an accident victim. When you pursue this type of case, you could recover compensation for your expenses and any losses your loved one suffered prior to their death. The available damages include:
- Medical expenses associated with fatal injury or illness
- Funeral and burial costs
- Pain and suffering experienced before the victim died
- Lost wages and benefits, including what the deceased would have earned if they survived
- Loss of companionship, care, and other benefits the deceased provided
There’s a statute of limitations you must follow if you wish to pursue compensation from the at-fault party that caused the death of your loved one. The statute of limitations in Georgia is two years. That means you have two years from the death date to file your lawsuit; otherwise, you’ll lose your right.
What to do if you’ve been hurt in Georgia
If you get hurt at work, suffer from a dog bite, or lose a loved one due to someone else’s negligence, it’s recommended that you hire an experienced attorney to represent you. If you were bitten by a dog, for example, a Georgia dog bite lawyer will be able to evaluate your claim, investigate the accident, gather relevant evidence, and demand fair compensation from the person or party that caused you harm.
If you have a worker’s compensation claim, your attorney will make sure your application is complete and accurate and will appeal your case if your employer or their insurer deny or attempt to underpay your valid claim.
If you need a wrongful death lawyer in Georgia, make sure to choose a law firm with the right experience, resources, and compassionate attention necessary to help you and your family recover compensation and get a measure of closure.