Protecting Your Rights After a Work Injury: What You Need to Know

Workplace injuries can trigger many unexpected and unanticipated events that can impact both your life and your family’s life.

If you or a loved one has suffered a workplace injury or are suffering from a medical condition that prevents them from performing their job, it is important for your family to consult with an attorney concerning workplace rights and options. It is important to address these life impacting circumstances within the legal landscape. There are a variety of legal rights that can be used to protect your family. Many of them can act in concert. This means that more than one can be pursued at the same time.

Among the legal rights to be considered and explored are as follows:

Workers’ Compensation

An injury at work, regardless of fault, should be considered as a valid workers’ compensation claim. A valid claim triggers the injured worker to be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits and protections. This includes payment of medical treatment, payment of temporary disability benefits, payments of permanent disability benefits, the provision of a job retraining voucher, and death benefits for dependents. Also, there are protections from discrimination pursuant to labor code section 132a.

Family Medical Leave Act

FMLA is a federal law that guarantees certain employees up to 12 work weeks of unpaid leave each year with no threat of job loss. FMLA also requires that employers covered by the law maintain the health benefits for the eligible workers just as if they were working.

Retirement Law

Some government employee’s participate in retirement systems outside of social security. Some of these systems offer service-retirements and disability retirements to the particular agency with respect to the employee’s classification. With respect to retirement law, one’s serious medical conditions can be either work-related or non-industrial to qualify for a disability retirement. Workers’ compensation cases can help prove the qualifying disability.

Social Security Disability 

During your lifetime, you may have had employment in which made contributions into Social Security.  If you satisfy the contribution requirement of 40 quarters, you may be eligible to receive Social Security Disability payments.  You can receive these payments concurrently with your workers’ compensation payments. There may, however, be some off-set or credit. 

The definition of disability under Social Security is different than other programs. Social Security pays only for total disability. No benefits are payable for partial disability or for short-term disability.  “Disability” under Social Security is based on your inability to work.  You are disabled under Social Security rules if: You cannot do work that you did before;  the Social Security Administrator decides that you cannot adjust to other work because of your medical condition(s); and Your disability has lasted or is expected to last for at least one year or to result in death.

Disability Accommodation

The Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990 requires an employer to provide reasonable accommodation to qualified individuals with disabilities who are employees or applicants for employment unless to do so would cause undue hardship. The ADA applies to both work-related and non-work-related injuries.

Workplace Discrimination

Employment discrimination in which an employee or job applicant is treated unfavorably because of his or her race, skin color, national origin, gender disability, religion or age. The EEOC or DFEH charges mail be filed in these cases. If there is no resolution, there may be a civil lawsuit resulting from it.

Third Party Civil Actions

Many workplace injuries involve a third party who is also responsible in part for the injury. For example, while on the job, a worker could be rear-ended by a taxi cab. Another example is a product liability suit filed because a worker got injured while using a defective piece of equipment. Sometimes, third party civil actions may be substantial and assist in taking care of your family’s lifetime needs.

Why Are We Here?

The Law Offices of Edward J Singer, a professional law corporation, are here to assist. We offer “free” consultations to provide you an understanding of your circumstances and your options. It is important for you to explore all opportunities to seek compensation and protection.

How to Make Contact

Please call the offices at 310-664-9000, or 562-860-4200. The staff will arrange for you to have a “free” consultation to meet with an attorney either in person or by phone. if you need advice after hours, please feel free to contact Mr. Singer on his cell phone. Call or text to 310-849-5679. if you wish to email Mr. Singer, please use our online form or do so at: edward.singer@lawbrea.com