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Workers’ Compensation after Workplace Violence


Published in Workers Compensation on March 17, 2020.

Workplace violence poses a serious threat to many members of the workforce across the country. From a simple assault to gun violence, the injuries employees suffer can leave them unable to pay their bills or support their families. If you’re the victim of workplace violence, you are probably feeling overwhelmed and unsure of what to do next. 

At Nelson & Smith, Attorneys at Law, our Macon workers’ compensation lawyers can help you understand your options. We work hard to help our clients get the compensation they need so that they can rebuild their lives. For a free case evaluation, contact our office today.

What is Workplace Violence?

Violence in the workplace can take on various forms. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) defines workplace violence as “any act or threat of physical violence, harassment, intimidation, or other threatening disruptive behavior that occurs at the worksite.” The definition is broader than many people realize, and even includes the “threat” of violence and intimidation. Here are some common examples of workplace violence: 

  • Fistfights between co-workers
  • Getting assaulted by a customer
  • Being assaulted during a robbery or other criminal act

People who work alone or in isolated areas are especially at risk. Other at-risk professions include the following: 

  • Healthcare professionals
  • Delivery drivers
  • Cashiers and bank tellers
  • Law enforcement and security officers

Anyone can be a victim of workplace violence. If you’re the victim of workplace violence, you should consider speaking with an experienced workplace injury lawyer to understand your rights. 

Workers’ Compensation Can Cover Acts of Workplace Violence

The good news is that workers’ compensation does often cover injuries suffered as a result of workplace violence. Workers’ compensation is a no-fault system intended to provide benefits to employees who are unable to work due to injuries suffered while on the job. As a result, you may qualify for workers’ compensation benefits even though your employer had no fault whatsoever in the attack that caused your injuries. 

In order to pursue a workers’ compensation claim, you will need to prove that your injury was sustained in the course of your job. However, there are a couple of important exceptions:

  1. The act of violence was not personal in nature – a fight between two employees who have a romantic relationship will probably not qualify for workers’ compensation. 
  2. The injured employee did not provoke the act of violence or instigate the attack. 

The facts involved in your case will be critical in determining whether you are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. As a result, you need to make sure you carefully document the incident and carefully collect the evidence you will need. An experienced workers’ compensation attorney can help you build your claim. 

The Workers’ Compensation Benefits You May Be Entitled To

If you qualify, workers’ compensation can provide the following benefits:

  • Coverage of all medical expenses related to your injury
  • Two-thirds of your income up to a maximum of $675 per week
  •  Permanent disability benefits if you are unable to return to work at all or cannot earn the same income

These benefits can provide tremendous relief and peace of mind if you’ve been injured as a result of workplace violence and cannot return to work. 

Call Our Macon Workers’ Compensation Lawyers  

Your life doesn’t have to be defined by your injury. The Macon workers’ compensation attorneys at Nelson & Smith, Attorneys at Law, can help you get back on your feet. Call us at (478) 746-1468 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation to discuss your case.