According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were over 5,000 work-related fatalities in the United States in 2018, with over 150 deaths in Ohio alone. If your family member has been seriously injured or killed in a workplace accident, you may be entitled to compensation. Learn more about the difference between workers’ compensation and employers’ liability and how it relates to workplace fatalities.
Workers’ compensation is an employer insurance program designed to compensate workers who are injured while performing their duties. This compensation is intended to cover the cost of medical bills associated with illness or injury and compensate for lost wages if the employee is unable to continue working. In the state of Ohio, all employers must provide workers’ compensation benefits to their employees.
On the other hand, employers’ liability covers incidents—such as illness, injury, or death—due to negligence. Workers may also file an employers’ liability claim if they feel that workers’ compensation does not adequately cover their expenses.
Surviving family members should file a wrongful death claim following a workplace fatality if they believe that the employer is at fault. To file a wrongful death claim, plaintiffs need to prove:
The purpose of a wrongful death claim is to seek compensation for damages above and beyond what workers’ compensation may provide. This includes, but is not limited to, loss of the decedent’s potential future earnings, loss of possible inheritance to the decedent’s current heirs, emotional anguish over the decedent’s loss, and more.
In Ohio, only the personal representative of the deceased may file a wrongful death claim. The statute of limitations for wrongful death claims in Ohio is two years.
At Regas & Haag, Ltd, our attorneys handle a wide variety of workers’ compensation and wrongful death claims. If you believe your loved one was wrongfully killed while working, we can help. Visit our website or call (330) 649-9102 to get started.