Every day people get assaulted on the job. While it’s rare for coworkers to launch altercations some jobs come with the danger that you’ll get assaulted. There are also random incidents which involve outsiders coming into the workplace and assaulting people when they arrive.
In each of these cases you are entitled to a workers compensation settlement. Thus you will take many of the same steps you’d take during a workers compensation case. In addition depending on the nature of the assault there will be third parties you can sue.
Take These Steps
- Report the assault to your employer.
- Report the assault to the police.
- Get the names and numbers of any coworkers, vendors, or customers who witnessed the assault.
- Take photos of your injury and the conditions at work if possible.
- Get medical care.
- Follow all your doctor’s instructions.
- Consult with a workers compensation attorney right away, as your case is already more complicated than a standard workers compensation case.
Can I sue my employer for being assaulted at work?
Usually you cannot sue your employer directly, you can only make a workers compensation claim. This can cover some of your medical issues and lost wages.
Can an employer fire you for defending yourself?
In general courts in other parts of the country have ruled that employers who terminate employees for defending themselves may be guilty of wrongful termination, but this issue has not yet come up in New Jersey. New Jersey is an at-will employment state. It also may depend on what your company policy has to say about self-defense at work.
On the flip side New Jersey employers are required to avoid retaliatory firings in workers compensation cases.
Your best bet for preserving your job is going to be to work with a workers compensation attorney right away. Your attorney may be able to discuss your job with your employer in a way that helps you maintain it.
What third parties might be sued when you’re assaulted at work?
You can bring a lawsuit against the person who assaulted you, though there is often not much money to recover.
If you work in a third party building, i.e., you’re a security guard or some other worker who goes to client sites, then you might be able to sue the owner of the building if we can find evidence they did not take reasonable precautions to keep the building as safe as possible.
Does mental damage count as damage covered by workers compensation?
Yes. It is recognized that threats or threatening behavior can cause actual mental harm. While a workers compensation case based on mental health may be a little harder to win than one based on physical injury it is still possible to file a workers compensation claim.
Get Help Today
If you’ve been injured on the job don’t wait for your employer to do the right thing. Your employer will do whatever it takes to protect their own interests.
Protect yours by making an appointment with Talone Law today.