Worker’s Compensation Vs Personal Injury: What’s The Difference?
When you get injured in your workplace, there are two ways you can seek compensation. Workers compensation claim or a personal injury lawsuit. However, these two options are completely different from each other. Let’s get into the details for a better understanding.
Workers’ compensation is an insurance program that is designed to help you financially when you are injured on the job. When filing for worker’s compensation, you don’t need to show anyone’s fault to seek medical benefits. It doesn’t matter if you are injured due to someone else’s fault or negligence. If you are a victim of any work-related accident, you are entitled to any of the worker’s compensation benefits. There are mainly four types of worker’s compensation benefits: Medical coverage, Disability benefits, rehabilitation, and death benefits.
Personal injury lawsuit
Personal injury is a completely different thing. It is when you file a case against a third party that is responsible for your pain or suffering. In this case, unlike worker’s compensation, you need to prove that your suffering or pain is caused due to the other party’s negligence or irresponsibility. After winning a personal injury case, you can seek money for actual and emotional damages. These include all your medical expenses and lost wages. Here is a list of damages that you can claim in a personal injury lawsuit:
Loss of companionship
Pain and suffering
Difference in damages
In The worker’s compensation, you can get compensated for all the physical damages. You can expect benefits for both permanent disability and medical bills. You can also receive rehabilitation and death benefits if so needed. The rehabilitation benefit is designed to help a worker return to their normal life or start a new profession. However, the death benefits compensate the dependents of the worker.
But when it’s a personal injury case, things are quite different. This is because, in personal injury, someone else is being blamed for your loss and suffering. Hence you are entitled to receive compensation for all the physical damages like medical bills and lost wages. And in addition to this, you also receive compensation for emotional distress and pain, and suffering. In some cases, you might also recover punitive damages that are not covered in worker’s compensation cases.
The process is different
The way you file a worker’s compensation claim is completely different from a personal injury lawsuit. A worker’s compensation claim is quite a starlight and clear. However, a claim for personal injury is different and complicated as well.
When it’s a worker’s compensation claim, you simply begin the process by notifying the employer about your injury. Next, you must work cordially and submit forms to initiate the process. The insurance company then investigates your claim and might order a medical exam if necessary. Once done, the insurance company comes to a decision and gives you the compensation amount. However, if you are not satisfied with the decision, you may take the help of a worker’s compensation lawyer.
But for a personal injury case, you begin the process by filing your case in the appropriate court. You then serve the at-fault party with a copy of the lawsuit. The at-fault party can also file his papers to the court. The case then goes to trial. It’s best to take the help of a lawyer in case of personal injury. As they are well acquainted with all the necessary tricks to help you receive the maximum compensation. Or if you want you may settle down the case over mutual consent.
The bottom line
While in both Workers’ Compensation and Personal Injury you are entitled to receive compensation and benefits, the types of damages and the claiming process are completely different. It is due to the nature of both claims. While worker’s compensation doesn’t involve providing anyone’s fault, the personal injury lawsuit is all about proving the fault of the third party for your suffering.
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