Not every injury is our fault. Sometimes, it is a result of another person’s negligence. This is true whether you were injured at work or in a public place. However, often when people get injured, it is because someone has neglected their duty of care. In this case, they would need a Miami workers’ compensation lawyer to take on their case.
In this article, our lawyers look at what the duty of care means and how it applies to work comp cases. We’ll do this with the help of relatable examples.
What Is the Duty of Care?
Duty of care refers to the requirement that a person acts toward others and the public with the watchfulness, attention, caution, and prudence that a reasonable person in similar circumstances would use. In other words, people in positions where their actions or inactions could put others in danger are required to act responsibly.
If they do not and any harm comes to someone as a result of their actions, then they are said to be negligent. Subsequently, they can be required to pay damages to the injured person. Thus, the duty of care principle exists to make people more responsible and act responsibly towards those around them.
In the workplace, an employer owes employees a duty of care. This would mean that an employer is responsible for protecting employees from undue risks that could arise as they do their jobs. Similarly, employees owe each other and the employer a duty of care. For example, an employer is responsible for providing employees with the proper training and equipment to do their job. If an employer fails to do this, they could be liable for negligence if employees get injured while at work.
However, it is not only the employees that an employer owes a duty of care. Customers may be owed a duty of care depending on how the business operates. For this article, though, we would be focusing on the employer’s duty of care towards their employees.
When Will Duty of Care Apply in Miami Work Comp Cases?
Generally, workers’ compensation is not a fault-based system. It means that whether or not you were at fault, your employer will compensate you for on-the-job injuries and illnesses. However, there are instances where the employer and their insurer will deny your claim. One of them is claiming you intentionally injured yourself.
If the assertion is false, you might have to file a personal injury lawsuit against your employer. For the lawsuit to succeed, you have to show the duty of care your employer owes you and the subsequent breach. Again, a breach can be failing to provide you with proper safety equipment.
Furthermore, aside from when your employer denies your claim, proving duty of care in work comp cases is needed where there’s evidence of gross negligence by your employer. In such cases, you need to file a lawsuit to get punitive damages. As such, you must show the breach that amounted to gross or malicious misconduct. So, summarily, while you don’t need to prove duty of care in typical workers’ comp cases, it is crucial when you file a lawsuit against your employer.
Statute of Limitations for Workplace Injuries
A statute of limitation refers to a time frame within which you must file a lawsuit. Failure to file the lawsuit within this period makes your lawsuit void ab initio. The statute of limitations differs depending on the state you reside in, and the countdown typically starts from the day the accident occurs.
It could be one year in some states, while it could go as long as six years in others. In Florida, the statute of limitations for workplace injuries is two years when filing a petition for benefits. However, for personal injury lawsuits, the law gives you four years.
Let Workers’ Compensation Lawyers in Miami Help You
You should seek legal advice as soon as possible if you think you have been injured due to your employer’s negligence. As pointed out earlier, you may need to hurry as there is a time limit for filing such cases. Our lawyers are on hand to assist you every step of the way.
First, we’ll listen to your case to determine its merits and come up with a strategy. Next, we would initiate settlement negotiations. We might also have to file a lawsuit depending on the case. Whatever the case, one thing is certain; you would be getting the best legal representation. So, contact us at Miami Lawyers 360 immediately, and let’s get to work getting the settlement you deserve.