Houston Workplace Accident Attorney
Workplace Accidents and Hiring an Attorney: What to Know
In 2020, there were over 4 million workplace injuries. There were also more than 4,000 preventable workplace deaths. There are many types of workplace accidents, with some much more severe than others.
Did you get an injury at work? Are you wondering if you need a Houston industrial accident attorney? Do you want to work with the best lawyers for accidents at work?
In this article, we’ll discuss what Houston workplace accident lawyers do and list the most common workplace injuries. You’ll also learn about when you should hire an attorney and how you can receive compensation. Keep reading!
What Is an Workplace Accident Lawyer?
Are you wondering what an industrial accident attorney is? This type of attorney focuses on workplace injuries in an industrial and refinery setting. There are several types of incidents that can happen at an industrial plant that can cause lasting damage or even death.
Workplace accident Houston attorneys focus on several types of businesses, including:
- Construction sites
- Paper mills
Injuries come in all sizes and range in severity, but the emotional damage from a workplace injury is a certainty. When in doubt, consult a lawyer to find out your options.
When to Hire an Attorney
It’s tough knowing when hiring a lawyer is the right step. Most law firms offer free consultations, so it’s best to contact a lawyer immediately after you injure yourself at work. Companies do what is best for them and sometimes that’s not what is best for workers.
It’s especially important to hire a lawyer if your manager brushed off your claim or if the injury was caused by negligence. There are only a few reasons a company would not be responsible for a workplace accident. Contacting a lawyer as soon as the injury happens, whether big or small, is the best course of action.
If any of the following apply to you, you probably need to consult a lawyer:
- Denied or delayed benefits
- Pre-existing conditions are present
- Cleared for work quickly without healing
- The employer says workers’ compensation is not applicable
- Unsure how to get medical care
- Management accuses you of fraud
- You don’t trust the doctor assigned to your case
- Symptoms continue to develop over time
When in doubt, speak to a legal professional to understand the legal options you have. A lawyer can guide you through the legal process so you can focus on healing and not on how to pay bills.
How a Lawyer Helps
A lawyer helps get everything in writing. This is helpful for workers’ compensation claims and if suing the company or a third party is necessary. Lawyers also have the legal expertise needed to help you with the process.
A lawyer will get the proper results moving with an employer. Employers also can’t ignore claims if it comes from a legal professional. There are limitations on when you can file compensation claims, so working with an attorney will ensure you don’t miss them.
An attorney can also advise you on how to prepare for and attend medical appointments. Oftentimes, courts require medical records, so it’s important to not overshare and to attend all appointments.
Dangers of Not Hiring a Lawyer
Trying to navigate a workplace injury alone can be overwhelming and a scary experience. You probably don’t know the ins and outs of the legalities. This could mean you lose out on benefits or compensation owed to you.
Many compensation claims can be very pricey. Businesses and insurance companies know this and try to avoid paying at all costs. When you get to the settlement stage, many companies attempt to offer one well below the amount owed.
You can also get a complete investigation of a workplace accident by hiring an attorney. While the company may make you feel like it was your fault, there are many times it was due to negligence or a safety violation. Without an investigation, you could miss out on vital facts to help you win your case.
Additionally, if you make a legal mistake during the case, you could jeopardize everything. Working with a lawyer will eliminate this risk. It’s in your best interest to hire a lawyer as soon as you’re injured.
Causes of Workplace Accidents
There are many ways you could get injured at work. Some injuries are minor and require little healing time. Others are much more severe and can cause permanent damage. Common causes include:
- Failed equipment
- Lack of safety measures
- Safety violations
- Compromised structures
Each of these issues can cause big or small accidents to happen. There are many more reasons accidents happen, but we’ll focus on the above during this article. Learn more about each below.
Explosions or mixed chemicals cause fires. Sometimes faulty wiring can cause one. The danger with fires is it’s usually too late to do anything once it’s started.
There are several other reasons for fires in the workplace, including:
- Structure fires
- Electrical malfunction
- Lighting equipment
Fires can quickly become catastrophes. Injuries that stem from fires are usually long-term and extremely painful. They can even be life-altering.
Equipment can fail for several reasons. Sometimes companies make alterations to it to increase productivity, leading to unsafe conditions. Lack of maintenance can also cause equipment to fail.
Or the equipment could have something fundamentally wrong with it. In this case, you could have a case with the manufacturer as well as your place of employment.
The following injuries could come from faulty equipment:
Any type of equipment can have an issue that could lead to a dangerous outcome. It’s always best to be careful when using the following:
- Nail guns
- Saws and sanders
- Conveyor belts
A workplace injury could happen at any time, so being safety aware is a must. Do you think your injury is because your workplace didn’t have the proper safety guidelines or preventions in place? If so, we can help. Reach out to us today.
Lack of Safety Measures
Safety measures can sometimes be costly to maintain or require a lot of training. Occasionally, companies will slack on safety measures to save time or money. This could not be a more dangerous practice.
Having a workforce that doesn’t understand how to remain safe while working is a risky situation. When employees don’t know the proper safety measures for their job, it puts everyone in danger. It’s also a negligent practice for employers and those doing it should be accountable.
Workplace explosions are some of the deadliest and most traumatizing incidents a worker can experience. Many explosions lead to death. Others can cause burns, injuries from debris, or loss of limbs.
An explosion in an industrial facility that doesn’t have a complete structural assessment after is a cause for concern. Even small explosions can cause lasting damage to facilities. Common causes of explosions are:
- Combustible dust
- Hot work
- Flammable liquids and gases
- Electrical hazards
Do you see a connection between several of these causes? Without safety measures in place, many disasters can happen that cause injury to workers.
Falling, chemical protection, and eye protection are common safety violations reported to OSHA. Companies can prevent most workplace injuries and deaths with the right measures in place. Other violations reported in 2020 include:
- Hazard communication
- Respiratory protection
- Hazardous energy
- Industrial powered trucks
- Lack of training
- Machinery and machine guarding
If you aren’t regularly trained on how to stay safe at your workplace, it may be time to consider a new employer.
The structure of an industrial building or work site is just as important as equipment maintenance. There are several ways structures are compromised, including:
- Framing issues
- Poor draining systems
- Wall damage, interior or exterior
- Column damage
- Maintenance issues
Most structural issues are easily resolved with regular maintenance. When the issues persist without resolution, it becomes a danger to employees. Compromised structures have disastrous consequences.
Types of Workplace Accidents
There are many different types of workplace accidents. Minor incidents may only require a few stitches. Major incidents can cause loss of life.
If you or a loved one has suffered from a major incident, it’s important to know your legal rights. Workplace accidents are oftentimes caused by negligence by management or another employee.
Common accidents include the following:
- Spinal cord injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Chemical exposure
- Internal organ injuries
- Chronic disease
Several of the above injuries lead to permanent damage. And some require lifelong care for survivors. We’ll discuss each one below.
Burn injuries are painful and can cause permanent damage. The medical expenses associated with treating burns are often expensive and extensive. In some situations, workers require skin grafts for the burned skin.
Burns can cause mental distress and disfigurement. Getting badly burned is a severely traumatic experience. Some causes of burns include:
- Chemical burns
- Electrical fire
Severe burns can impact your daily life forever. Burns cause damage to nerves which leads to intense pain.
Spinal Cord Injuries
Workers can suffer from a range of spinal cord injuries. Most are debilitating and cause lifelong pain. In severe cases, workers can have:
- Permanent tingling in extremities
- Muscle atrophy
- Nerve damage
- Foot drop
- Intense and chronic pain
- Reduced or limited mobility
- Herniated discs
- Spinal cord compression
The worst cases leave people bedridden or in a wheelchair for life. The above conditions are serious and cause lasting pain for the injured.
Traumatic Brain Injuries
Brain injuries can happen from a variety of incidents, including:
- Blunt trauma
- Car accidents
- Lack of medical care
- Blast injuries
- Internal injuries
- Penetrating wounds
Some of these injuries can cause loss of life if not treated immediately. Other injuries are costly and require therapies and surgeries for an extended period.
Exposure to hazardous chemicals can cause short- and long-term effects. Some are immediate, such as the inability to breathe, while others take time to show up. Chemicals can come in gases, liquids, powders, solids, or dust.
When exposed, you could have the following injuries:
- Skin rashes
- Lung damage
- Kidney disorders
- Internal damage
- Vomiting or nausea
- Birth defects for fetuses
- Nervous system disorders
A company should have posters and infographics in the workplace to explain how to handle and store chemicals. There should also be regular training sessions and safety measures in place to protect workers. If these things aren’t present in the workplace, your employer is likely negligent and responsible for your injury.
Injury to Internal Organs
Another type of injury that happens at the workplace is an injury to internal organs. This can be a penetrating injury, internal bleeding, or blunt force trauma. There are several situations where an internal injury could happen, including:
- Vehicle or forklift accidents
- Tools or equipment penetration on the body
- Assault from another employee
- Gunshot or stabbing wound
- Struck by heavy equipment
- Being stuck between equipment or large objects
- Someone dropping something from a high spot
The danger with these types of injuries is that symptoms don’t always show up right away. If you are hit by a piece of equipment or a tool, you may not know you are injured until days later. By then, the injury could be much worse.
If there is any doubt if you are injured, it’s best to file an injury report and demand your employer get you checked out.
Burns from chemicals or fires can cause permanent scarring. When you have permanent scars, especially on a visible part of your body, you are entitled to more compensation. Employers should also compensate you for the trauma it causes to have a scar that reminds you of the injury.
Severe burns often require surgery or grafts to repair. This type of medical care is costly and can take months to complete. Loss of income during the time required to heal can be detrimental to workers.
Discuss your options with a lawyer if you have permanent or severe scarring from a workplace injury.
Some scarring causes disfigurement. This is a serious workplace accident that has lasting consequences on the body and the mind. Scarring and disfigurement are often considered together when discussing compensation for this injury.
Repetitive stress to a certain area of your body can cause permanent damage and numbness. Repetitive actions cause damage to the nerves and joints. For example, typists often get carpal tunnel syndrome in their wrists from the repetitive motion needed to type all day.
Other actions that may cause joint or nerve damage include:
The injuries usually associated with numbness are called repetitive stress injuries, or RSIs. The most typical RSIs are:
- DeQuervian’s Syndrome
- Ganglion cysts
When you have RSIs, you experience numbness and weakness in the affected area. You may also have a sensitivity to hot or cold. The area can also become stiff or swollen.
An electrical shock can cause one of four injuries. Those include:
- Electric shock
- Fall injuries
You don’t have to work directly with electricity to have an electrical injury. Exposed wires or circuits are a common reason people get electrocuted in the workplace. When heat radiates from a piece of equipment or wiring, a thermal burn can happen.
An arc flash explosion sends a wave of energy out. This can cause severe damage to your ears, skin, or lungs. How your body reacts to an electrical current passing through can cause more consequences, such as falls, muscle injuries, or head trauma.
Many jobs require the use of vehicles. Vehicular accidents can happen due to a number of reasons, such as someone else’s negligence when driving or a mechanical issue. Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of workplace deaths.
- Oil and gas extraction
- Emergency response
- Truck driving
Sometimes, a pedestrian gets struck by a moving vehicle while on the job. Vehicles can also catch fire and cause injuries.
Amputations are often caused by using equipment improperly. A car or forklift accident could also cause an amputation. The most common extremities to be amputated are hands, arms, legs, fingers, and feet.
What types of machines are most dangerous and likely to cause amputations? The following list covers a few types:
The danger of amputation also is dependent on where the machine is placed and how much training workers are provided. Guards and devices should be used to prevent amputations. Amputations are often caused by negligence by a coworker or the management team.
Chronic diseases are a common workplace injury that is overlooked. Chronic disease develops from prolonged exposure to a hazardous environment. This can be from chemicals, dust, or asbestos. A few of the most common diagnoses include:
- Chemical poisoning
- Industrial dermatitis
- Industrial asthma
- Neurological disorders
- Emotional distress disorders
The main thing with chronic diseases is that they happen over time and most people don’t realize it. If you think you have developed a chronic disease due to your job, it’s best to contact a lawyer before discussing it with your employer.
Compensation After a Workplace Accident
Workers’ compensation only covers a set amount of compensation following a work accident. It also doesn’t consider the emotional damage the injury causes, or the lifestyle changes required following a life-altering accident.
Being covered by insurance is a great benefit, but sometimes it’s not enough for the injury obtained. When you are injured on the job, you should consider the following before reaching a settlement:
- Current and future earnings lost
- Current and future medical costs
- Household expenses
- Altered lifestyle requirements
- Canceled plans
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
- Loss of consortium
Several of these don’t have a monetary value placed on them. Each workplace accident impacts the injured in a different way. Working with a lawyer will help you place a monetary value on the above.
For example, let’s say you lose a leg in a workplace accident. Most companies wouldn’t consider the modifications you’d need to make to your home, vehicle, or life. Settlements probably wouldn’t cover the mental impact of losing a limb, either.
An attorney factors every situation and steps into a settlement. To get the maximum compensation, you must work with a legal professional. There may be one or more responsible parties who owe you for your injury.
Hire a Houston Workplace Accident Attorney Today
Now that you understand how a Houston workplace accident attorney can be beneficial to you, you may be ready to connect with one. At Morgan Legal Group PLLC, we have the expertise needed to help you get the compensation you deserve.
Whether you are the injured worker or a family member, we are here to help. With our “no fee unless you win” guarantee, what do you have to lose? Don’t stay in the dark about your options; get an expert opinion about your rights.
We empower our clients by explaining every detail, each step of the way. We educate you on your rights and benefits when injured at work. Contact us today for a free consultation.
Workplace Accident Attorney In Houston
As an employee, you have the right to work in an environment free of risk or whatever would disrupt your health, hence the reason for Occupational Safety and Health Administration policies. This, however, does not stop accidents from happening in Houston companies, especially in the industrial and refinery industry. Most times, the fault is from the negligence of the company’s management, and sometimes, it could be a fellow employee’s fault.
If the workplace accident results due to the company’s carelessness or negligence, then you have a case, as long as it can be proven. A workplace accident attorney can ensure that you get fully compensated by the company for your injury.
Rather than comply with the state and federal government’s health and safety laws, most company owners or management completely ignore the law. They buy inferior materials or equipment rather than buy quality, mostly because they want to save cost or feel the expense involved in maintaining safety is not necessary and just hope an accident never occurs. This puts the lives of the workers at risk. Substandard equipment and materials, accidents are likely to take place, and when they do, a workplace accident lawyer can help you get the right compensation for your injury. Some injuries can even lead to the loss of the life of the employee. In cases like that, the family members of the victim or deceased can file a case for wrongful death.
Workplace injuries can be severe and can most likely lead to loss of life.
Some workplace injuries and accidents include;
- Spinal cord and head injuries caused by falls from substandard or faulty scaffolding and ladders, slipping on slick floors, or tripping over improperly stored materials.
- Workplace accidents can be caused through electrocution due to a poor connection, chronic diseases due to exposure to hazardous chemicals or toxins burns caused by dangerous chemicals or electric or explosion from flammable gas, accidents during company events, amputation, or a bad cut from a faulty machine or equipment, head injuries caused by fallen objects, etc.
Different workplace accidents in Houston, TX can occur in a carefree working environment and can happen at any time.
Have you been involved in any of the above-listed workplace accidents, and have you been neglected by your employer? Hire a workplace accident attorney today!
A Better Option For You
Rather than wait for your employer’s worker compensation insurance company that would probably cover their own bases and choose not to cover your claim, and will not offer you or be fair to you to cover your injury expenses, give us a call.
Morgan Legal Group can help you get full financial compensation for your workplace accident injury. We know all the right steps to take to produce a positive outcome. For companies not willing to do the right thing by compensating you, we have strategies set in place to ensure that they comply at the end.
A workplace accident can lead to loss of life a cause a serious injury that can last a lifetime, and when faced with such cases, we do not take it likely.
Hire a workplace accident lawyer now!
Contact Morgan Legal Group
440 Louisiana St., Suite 910, Houston, TX 77002