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The Difference Between Personal Injury and Workers’ Compensation in Denver


October 4, 2017

After an injury, people often wonder if they have the right to file a personal injury or workers’ compensation claim. It’s important to understand the difference between these two types of claims so you know what to do if you are ever injured. Here are the differences between personal injury and workers’ compensation in Denver:

Where the Injury Happened

The workers’ compensation system was established to compensate individuals who were injured while on the job. Therefore, in order to receive workers’ compensation benefits, the injury that you have sustained must have occurred while you were performing the duties of your job. But, that is not the case for personal injury victims. Personal injuries can happen anywhere and everywhere, including on the road, in a doctor’s office, or even in a five star luxury resort.  

Fault

In order to recover compensation in a personal injury case, the victim must be able to prove that the defendant was at fault. For example, a car accident victim must show evidence that proves the defendant caused the crash. Evidence may include photographs from the scene of the crash, a police report that summarizes the events leading up to the crash, or testimony from an accident reconstruction expert. If the victim is unable to prove fault, he will not be awarded compensation for his injuries. Learn more about determining fault in a personal injury case.

On the other hand, the victim does not need to prove fault in a workers’ compensation case. The victim is not responsible for showing that someone else such as a co-worker or employer caused his injuries. As long as the injury occurred at work, the victim is most likely entitled to receive workers’ compensation.

Compensation

Another difference between these two types of claims is the compensation that you will be able to recover. Personal injury victims may be awarded compensation for their current and future medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Workers’ compensation claimants can be compensated for their medical expenses and lost wages, however they will not be awarded compensation for their pain and suffering. This means it is possible to recover more compensation in a personal injury lawsuit than it is by filing a workers’ compensation claim.

Party With Financial Responsibility

If you have been injured while at work, your employer’s insurance company is responsible for compensating you for your injuries. In a personal injury case, the defendant’s insurance company is typically responsible for compensating the victim. For instance, the defendant’s car insurance company would cover injuries sustained in a car accident, and his homeowner’s insurance would cover injuries sustained on his property. If the defendant is not insured, he may be responsible for compensating the victim.

If you have been injured, don’t hesitate to seek legal representation from an experienced personal injury and workers’ compensation attorney. Mark A. Simon will work tirelessly to ensure you receive the compensation that you deserve. Call us at 303-321-4878 or contact Mark A. Simon to discuss your legal options during a free consultation.