While workers’ compensation benefits may provide compensation needed to help an injured oilfield worker pay for their medical bills and make up lost wages, sometimes these benefits are not enough to cover one’s total damages. In other cases, an employee may not have workers’ compensation coverage, thus making it impossible for an injured worker to recover financially.
Below, we discuss whether injured oilfield workers may have options for pursuing compensation outside of the workers’ compensation system.
How the Louisiana Workers’ Comp System Works
To determine compensation eligibility for an oilfield injury it’s crucial to understand how the Louisiana workers’ compensation system works. Under most circumstances, workers’ compensation laws protect employers from personal injury lawsuits, meaning that an injured worker may not be able to file a lawsuit for a workplace accident.
However, it’s important to note that there are key exceptions to this rule that allow employees in Louisiana to go beyond workers’ compensation and pursue justice from their employer. These exceptions include:
- If your employer did not carry workers’ compensation insurance as required by law.
- If your injuries were the result of gross negligence or intentional misconduct on the part of your employer.
One main difference between workers’ compensation and personal injury lawsuits is the damages available. With a workers’ comp claim, you may be entitled to benefits to make up for medical expenses and lost wages. With a personal injury case, you may be entitled to compensation for damages related to both economic and non-economic damages.
Filing a Third-Party Claim for Your Oilfield Injury
On top of pursuing workers’ compensation benefits and potentially filing a claim against your employer for negligence, you may also be able to file a third-party claim against another negligent party. Your personal injury attorney will be able to determine if any of the following third parties could be held liable for your oilfield accident and resulting injuries:
- Parts or equipment manufacturers
- Oil rig owners
- Trucking companies
- Shipping companies
Helping you Pursue Just Compensation and Recover
Every oilfield accident is different. Because these cases tend to be more complex, it’s wise to hire a skilled attorney with experience handling both personal injury cases and workers’ compensation cases. Our legal team is standing by ready to review your case for free, lay out your legal options, and craft a personalized legal strategy to maximize your chances of obtaining just compensation.
Let us help you get back on your feet. Contact Morris & Dewett Injury Lawyers at (318) 221-1508 to schedule a free consultation! You can also fill out our online contact form and we will get back to you as soon as possible.