While personal injury and workers’ compensation claims might seem very similar, there are some important distinctions. A workers’ compensation claim is filed when an employee is injured in an accident that arises out of or takes place in the course of his or her employment. A personal injury lawsuit applies when an individual is injured due to the negligence of a third party e.g. car accidents, slip and falls, etc.
Both personal injury lawsuits and workers’ compensation claims have the payment of fair and reasonable compensation as their goals, but the two are fundamentally different in regards to fault requirements and the types of compensation/damages available.
Below are the three primary differences between the two types of claims:
- Determining fault
Someone needs to be liable or at fault in order to file a personal injury lawsuit. In most cases, this will involve some form of negligence. On the other hand, workers’ compensation claims can often cover specific injuries even if the employer or supervisor were not at fault in any way.
In a personal injury case, you are entitled to any form of damages that you can prove, including pain and suffering. Workers’ compensation, however, does not include pain and suffering. Also, workers’ compensation claims generally involve weekly or periodic payments, while injury damages can be collected in lump sums.
- Right to sue
In most cases, you cannot file a lawsuit against an employer after you have filed a workers’ compensation claim. A worker usually forfeits their right to sue the employer if they have filed for or are currently collecting workers’ compensation for that particular injury.
In Nevada, most employers are required to offer workers’ compensation coverage. Nevada law states:
“…Every person, firm, voluntary association and private corporation, including any public service corporation, which has in service any person under a contract of hire” needs coverage. (NRS 616A.230)
GGRM has been successfully and passionately serving the citizens of Las Vegas in the areas of workers’ compensation and personal injury for over 40 years. Give us a call at 702-388-4476 to schedule a consultation with one of our attorneys. To learn more about our firm and how we can help you, visit our website.