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Katy Non-Subscriber Accident Lawyer

Texas, alone among all 50 states, does not require employers to provide Workers’ Compensation Program coverage to their employees. Employers may provide the coverage, but many do not because it is not mandatory. An employer who does not participate in the program is called a non-subscriber.

An employee who suffers a workplace injury when working for a non-subscriber does not have a right to free medical care or a partial wage if they use up their sick days. If they want compensation for their losses, in most cases they must work with an attorney and sue the employer for negligence.

A Katy non-subscriber accident lawyer represents people who suffered injuries while working for companies that do not offer Worker’s Compensation. If you are in that category, do not assume you have no recourse. Reach out to a competent work accident attorney to discuss your legal options.

Identifying Negligence in the Workplace

Employers must take reasonable steps to ensure their employees are safe at work. When an employee suffers a serious injury that causes them to seek medical treatment or need time off, it is essential to investigate how the accident happened and whether negligence was a cause.

Negligence means failing to take reasonable care to ensure the safety of others. A non-subscriber claim lawyer could investigate an incident in Katy to determine whether the employer’s negligence was a contributing factor. Examples of employer negligence could include:

  • Hiring untrained people for safety-critical jobs
  • Inadequate supervision of dangerous activities (often a contributing factor to maritime injuries)
  • Poor equipment maintenance
  • Providing inadequate equipment or none at all
  • Failing to develop and enforce reasonable safety procedures
  • Inadequate response to prior accidents leading to ongoing hazard
  • Lax disciplinary rules
  • Non-compliance with OSHA rules and other regulatory standards

The employer is legally liable if an employee’s negligence causes an injury. If evidence of employer negligence exists, the worker could bring a lawsuit seeking compensation. If they can establish that the employer’s negligence was the direct cause of their injury, an injured worker could collect their medical costs, lost wages, the value of the sick days and other benefits they used while recovering, and a sum to compensate for their pain and suffering.

Non-Subscribing Employer Defenses to Injury Claims

Injured employees can sue non-subscribing employers for negligence, and Texas Labor Code § 406.033 limits the defenses the employer can raise. That does not mean every injured employee will win their lawsuit but it does put the employee in a strong negotiating position if they can prove employer negligence.

In general, non-subscribing employers cannot raise defenses that shift responsibility onto the employee. Defenses that could be available in other contexts but are not available to non-subscribers include:

  • Assumption of risk, meaning the injured person knew an activity was dangerous and proceeded regardless
  • Contributory negligence, meaning the injured person’s conduct contributed to the accident or their injury
  • Waiver of liability, meaning the injured person agreed in advance not to sue if they sustained an injury

However, if an employee suffered an injury while they were intoxicated or trying to harm themselves or others, an employer will not be liable.

Employers have some defenses they often use in these cases. A non-subscriber might assert that the injury happened during routine, nonhazardous activities and was not predictable or preventable. The employer could also argue that the incident was wholly the result of the actions of a third party or an unanticipated event such as an “act of God.” An attorney representing a worker could counter these defenses by presenting evidence showing that the employer’s conduct had some connection to the injury.

Some Employers Require Arbitration

Some companies force their employees to sign a document agreeing to submit all disputes to binding arbitration as a condition of employment. Texas honors such agreements.

An employee who must pursue an employer through binding arbitration has fewer rights than an employee who pursues damages through the civil courts. For example, there is no appeal of an arbitrator’s decision, and the decision regarding employer liability is made by one person rather than a jury.

Any injured worker who signed an arbitration agreement should consult a Katy legal professional about seeking damages from their non-subscribing employer. Although the process is somewhat restrictive, injured workers with skilled attorneys can prevail in these proceedings.

Seek Damages Against a Non-Subscribing Employer with a Katy Attorney

You do not have to bear the burden of a workplace injury if your employer does not provide Workers’ Compensation protection. If you can demonstrate that the employer’s conduct contributed to your accident, the employer is liable for your damages.

Get in touch with a Katy non-subscriber accident lawyer as soon as possible. With their assistance, you could build a strong case against your employer and get the compensation you earned. Call today.

SMS Legal

SMS Legal N/a
23227 Red River Dr

Katy, TX 77494
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(346) 500-6160