It is an unfortunate fact that we do not get to choose our co-workers. This can mean that, like it or not, an employee may be stuck working with someone who does not embrace safe work habits, drives recklessly or cuts corners.
This reckless behavior can lead to severe injuries or even death, but who is at fault under circumstances like this?
It starts with the employer
An employer is at least partially responsible for any injury in the workplace, unless, of course, the injuries were caused by the worker’s own reckless behavior. Assuming the injury was caused by others or is an accident, both the employer and the victims can file a workers’ compensation claim, which can cover medical expenses and a portion of the lost income from not working. If the injuries are severe, it may be necessary to file a lawsuit against the employer as well, notably if they neglected to take corrective measures regarding negligent employees.
Holding the co-worker responsible for intent
The victim and their family may find it necessary to seek personal damages against the reckless co-worker as well as the employer if it is apparent that the co-worker intentionally or recklessly caused the injury. Compensation in these cases can cover:
- Medical expenses
- Damages to the victim and their family
- Past and future lost wages
- The pain and suffering caused by injuries
While accidents on the road happen, for example, a co-worker who does not follow the rules of the road and causes harm to the passenger victim will more likely be responsible for damages or compensation. Also, it is often more likely to be a personal injury case if the injury happens while the negligent employee and the victim are on break or off the clock doing non-business-related activities.
A question of responsibility
Responsibility is often an area of dispute. Those with questions should discuss the circumstances of the injury with a knowledgeable personal injury attorney here in Louisiana. They can provide insight into how these cases usually unfold, how a settlement would look and who to hold accountable for the injuries.