Slip and fall injuries are among the most prevalent kinds of injuries in the workplace. According to the National Safety Council (NSC), slip and fall injuries represent more than 20 percent of all workplace injuries. Most slip and fall accidents lead to minor soft tissue injuries, including:
- Sprained tendons, ligaments and muscles
- Small gashes
- Minor contusions
- Minor burns
However, a significant amount of slip and fall accidents result in far more severe injuries, known as hard injuries. Examples of these include:
- Head trauma
- Disc herniations
- Third or fourth degree burns
- Deep gashes
Common causes of slip and fall accidents in the workplace
Some of the usual causes of slip and fall accidents in the workplace are:
- Spilled liquids
- Insufficient, or lack of, warning signs
- Inadequate lighting
- Broken or uneven stairs
- Uneven surfaces
- Sudden stops on the elevator
- Exposed cables
Under the regulations of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), employers have a duty to implement safety procedures in the workplace. An employer who is in violation of such rules may be subject to the payment of fines and in some cases, imprisonment.
Filing a workers’ compensation claim
Following a slip-and-fall injury in the workplace, you can usually file a workers’ compensation claim. In order to prevail in a workers’ compensation claim, your injury must have taken place as a direct result of the relationship you have with your employer. You do not have to prove that your employer was negligent or careless as you would if you were to file a personal injury lawsuit against your employer. And you would still be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits if your own negligence caused your injury.
However, if you slipped and fell during your lunch break, you may not be able to recover workers’ compensation benefits. Usually, you must have been working in order to be eligible. For example, if you slipped and fell during your commute to or from work, then it is also improbable that you would obtain benefits. There are, however, numerous exceptions to this general rule. By contrast, if the slip and fall occurred while you were traveling for your employer, then you would qualify for workers’ compensation.
Legal action against third parties
Your receipt of workers’ compensation benefits usually prevents you from pursuing a lawsuit against your employer. However, if a third party, such as an employee of another firm or a customer of your employer, was negligent, and caused you to slip, trip or fall, then you may be able to file a personal injury lawsuit against that company.
How a workers’ compensation attorney can help
If you suffered a slip and fall injury in the workplace, call the workers’ compensation attorneys at Briskman Briskman & Greenberg. We will advise you as to your rights, and make certain that you have sufficient evidence to support your claim. You can receive a free consultation with an experienced workers’ compensation attorney, and you will not have to pay a fee unless we are successful in securing compensation for you.