Famighetti & Weinick PLLC are Long Island employment lawyers. We receive many calls each week from potential clients and we hear a wide variety of questions from them. One question we hear a lot is “I thought I can’t sue my employer?” Why do employees ask this question and what’s the answer? Today’s Long Island employment law blog explores this issue.
Personal injury law applies when employees are hurt or injured in the workplace. In New York and on Long Island, workers compensation law covers situations where employees are hurt at work. Under workers compensation, employees generally cannot sue their employers for workplace injuries. Because many people are familiar with the concept of workers compensation, they believe that the rule prohibiting lawsuits based on workplace injuries applies to all workplace matters.
But, workers compensation does not act as a prohibition against all lawsuits relating to the workplace. Even in the world of personal injury, sometimes employees can still pursue lawsuits based on injuries incurred in the workplace. For example, employees injured from construction site accidents may be able to sue the property owner or a general contractor. Further, employees injured in a car accident may be able to sue the other driver. Similarly, if a worker is injured on property which does not belong to the employer, the worker may be able to sue the property owner. Also, New York’s scaffolding law protects employees working with ladders, or otherwise working at heights. Before concluding that you cannot recover for your workplace injuries in court, it’s best to consult with an experience employment lawyer or a personal injury lawyer.