Generally, workplace safety in Columbia is governed under the purview of the Occupational Health and Safety Administration, meaning that most private businesses are subject to the rules and regulations laid out in this piece of legislation. Violating these laws could subject these entities to legal consequences.
However, it’s essential to understand your options as an injured party in the event your employer violates workplace safety in Columbia. Should you find yourself in a situation where you believe OSHA standards have been breached or another workplace safety issue has resulted in you sustaining an injury, it is vital to speak with a skilled workers’ compensation attorney promptly to ensure your legal rights are protected.
There are many possible actions taken by your employer that could compromise your safety. While such events may not stem from intentionality or negligence, the injuries resulting from workplace incidents can be devastating. Injuries from unsafe workplace conditions can occur in various environments, including industrial settings and retail businesses.
Common examples that could constitute violations of workplace regulations include:
Employees in Columbia who work with chemicals, machinery, or other industrial equipment are more likely to suffer harm in the workplace. These safety grievances sometimes lead to life-threatening injuries.
While some workplace safety violations may result in minimal injuries and long-term damage, others lead to severe injuries. Although OSHA standards govern workplace safety, the agency does not provide compensation for workers who are injured on the job. Instead, individuals who sustain workplace injuries are typically required to obtain any recovery of monetary damages through their employer’s workers’ compensation program. Workers’ compensation typically covers lost wages, medical bills, and other direct costs when you suffer injuries because of your job.
In addition, OSHA can assess severe safety penalties in the form of fines to employers in Columbia who are found to violate workplace safety standards. These fines can range widely depending on the underlying alleged violation. For example, in cases of violations assessed as serious, OSHA can fine the employer up to $15,625 for each instance. In the case of violations assessed as being intentional or for subsequent violations, the financial penalty per instance can be as high as $156,259.
It is essential to understand that if your employer accepts your workers’ compensation claim, they are not accepting liability for the incident. Furthermore, due to the legal parameters surrounding workers’ compensation, you cannot file a civil lawsuit even when the injuries stemmed from unsafe or negligent working conditions. However, there may be exceptions to these standards, such as when a third party is involved. In these cases, consulting with a lawyer as soon as possible is essential.
Workplace safety in Columbia should not be taken lightly. When the legal standards designed to protect your well-being on the job are violated—whether by your employer or a third party—and you are injured, you may have a right to collect compensation for the harm you have suffered. The laws surrounding workplace safety violations are complex, and pursuing a personal injury case outside of the workers’ compensation system can be inordinately difficult in many cases.
Speaking with an attorney about injuries stemming from unsafe working conditions is wise. An attorney could guide you through the workers’ compensation process and advise and assist if you have a case outside this system. Call us now to arrange a confidential consultation.