Can I File A Workers’ Comp Claim and a Personal Injury Lawsuit In Missouri?

by James M. Hoffmann on Jul. 16, 2020

Employment Workers' Compensation Accident & Injury Accident & Injury  Personal Injury 

Summary: If you have been injured on the job in Missouri, you might be wondering if you can file a workers’ comp claim and also file a personal injury lawsuit.


If you have been injured on the job in St. Louis, you might be wondering if you can file a workers’ comp claim and also file a personal injury lawsuit.


In this blog, we’ll discuss the differences between a workers’ comp claim and a personal injury claim, and which may be the better option for you. 


It’s Not Typically Possible To Sue Your Employer For Personal Injury

In most cases, you can’t sue your employer for an injury you experience on the job. Since your employer will be responsible for paying for workers’ compensation insurance, this is considered the “exclusive remedy” for injuries that you suffer on the job.


In other words, you usually cannot file a lawsuit against your employer when you are injured on the job – because you are covered by workers’ compensation insurance. Workers’ compensation insurance is a type of “no-fault” insurance, meaning that you can always be compensated for your injury, no matter who the responsible party was.


There Are Some Circumstances Where You Can Sue Your Employer After An Injury

These situations are rare, but there may be some scenarios where you can sue your employer after an injury rather than filing a worker’s compensation claim. You may be able to do so if:


  • Your employer intentionally hurts you – If your employer takes some action that causes you direct, intentional harm, such as your boss punching you in the face, you may be able to sue. Note that this includes only intentional acts. Even extreme carelessness and negligence typically do not necessarily qualify you to file a lawsuit if you’re covered by workers’ comp insurance.

  • Your employer has no workers’ compensation insurance – Most companies in St. Louis are legally mandated to have workers’ comp insurance. If your employer does not, or has insufficient insurance for your injury, you may sue them for damages in civil court.


You May Be Able To File a Workers’ Comp Claim and Sue a Third Party

There are some cases when you can file a claim for workers’ comp, and also sue a party responsible for your injury.


If, for instance, you were injured at a construction site because a third-party electrician left a wire exposed and you were electrocuted, you may be able to file a workers’ comp claim with your employer, and also file a civil lawsuit to pursue damages against the responsible electrician. 


In this case, having an experienced St. Louis workers’ comp attorney can be especially beneficial, since navigating a workers comp claim and a lawsuit can get quite complicated.


Know Your Options For Compensation – Contact An Experienced Attorney Now!

Whether you are filing workers’ compensation or believe that you can file a personal injury lawsuit, an attorney with experience in both workers compensation and personal injury cases can help you get the help you need to navigate the legal system in Missouri – and work to get you the full amount of compensation you are legally entitled to.

If you have been injured on the job, give the Law Office of James M. Hoffmann a call 24/7 at (314) 361-4300 for a FREE case evaluation.

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