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What is the Difference Between a Personal Injury Claim and a Workers’ Compensation Claim?

Read on to learn more about how and why personal injury claims and workers’ compensation claims differ and what you can expect in terms of compensation.

The primary difference between the two is that personal injury requires fault, while the latter does not. The claims also differ in terms of the type and amount of compensation allowed. For example, workers’ compensation is usually the result of an accident where nobody is at fault, while personal injury implies the accident was avoidable. In other words, personal injury usually requires someone be to blame for what happened through their actions or inaction.

What is Workplace Compensation?

As a rule, working in any workspace entitles you to workers’ compensation. The concept came about to protect employers from being sued and ensure employees receive adequate compensation without suing.

This trade-off recognizes that workplace accidents happen, and even if you were personally negligent and caused the accident yourself, you are still eligible for this type of compensation. There is no blame or fault, simply assistance for your injuries through benefits. These benefits typically cover your physical and financial challenges arising from the accident. For example, your medical bills, weekly wage compensation, occupational rehabilitation, or even permanent, ongoing disability or impairment compensation.

One exception is if the employee can prove intentional harm, in which case they can pursue legal options for an augmented claim. There are also some federal laws that allow some specific types of employees to sue for workplace-related damages and personal loss-type compensation.

How Does a Personal Injury Claim Differ?

To claim fault in an incident, your lawyer must prove that someone is at fault either negligently or intentionally. For example, perhaps they have not maintained their property or premises, causing you to twist and break your ankle in a hole, slip, and fall on a wet floor, or a loose light fitting falls on your head.

Property owners are legally and morally obliged to maintain their premises to protect residents, employees, or visitors from harm from old or failed structures or equipment. When people get hurt due to a lack of maintenance or vigilance, they are in a position to sue the owners or other groups for personal injury.  

Legally defined, personal injury includes harm to your body and can also include harm to your mind or emotions. A such, in contrast to a workers’ compensation claim, the outcome of a personal injury claim may cover the same benefits plus compensation for lost income and earning capacity, any anticipated medical expenses in the future, and notably, emotional and ‘general damages such as loss of quality of life and pain and suffering.

Related post: File a Personal Injury Claim After an Accident in California (7 Steps)

How Can HHJ Trial Attorneys Help?

Our personal injury attorneys have a wide range of qualifications and experience, from criminal defense to personal injury. Trusted by the government, major corporations, insurance entities, and celebrities, we enjoy a significant professional presence and status.

Our partners have tackled and won more than 100 jury trials and are known for taking on even the most challenging cases, recovering millions of dollars in compensation. As a testament to our passion and proficiency, we were recently named San Diego County’s “Best Litigation Firm” and listed as “Super Lawyers.” 

Crucially, we wholeheartedly dedicate our time and energy to helping those who are suffering. Our motivation to do right by the “wronged” drives our fight to stand up for, protect and win cases for these victims by holding organizations accountable for negligence and carelessness and demanding insurance companies to meet their assurances.

Contact us if you believe you’ve experienced personal injury and need guidance. We are on your side when it feels like the world is against you.

Testimonial from Dylan, San Diego Auto Accident Victim

When my family was affected by an auto accident, I reached out to HHJ Trial Attorneys. I learned they were highly recommended and respected amongst their peers. HHJ treated my family as their own from the very beginning. From start to finish they maintained constant communication with us and ensured we were in good care. I don’t wish anyone ever has to experience a hardship of which attorneys are needed, but if you do I strongly encourage you to call HHJ. Special thanks to Mike Hernandez and Shelby Cardoza for being there for my family when we needed it most. True professionals.

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