What Are Your Rights as an Independent Contractor if You Suffer an Injury?
Working as an independent contractor means that you’re not technically employed by a company. This makes injury cases very difficult to prosecute as negligence needs to be proven on their part for you to get compensation.
If the circumstances around an injury are murky, proving who was the negligent party will be harder to prove. But it’s not impossible if you take the proper steps to document the incident, know who to hold responsible and work with the right people. Let’s take a look at what your rights and responsibilities are as an independent contractor on a work site, and who you should prosecute if you have suffered an injury.
What are Your Employer’s Responsibilities?
Someone who employs a subcontractor only has the responsibility to prevent actions that could foreseeably cause them injuries and provide them with a safe environment. It is not the employer’s responsibility to teach the contractor how to use machinery or to give them training. They are also not responsible for supervising them during their work. These are some of the things that make it a bit harder for independent contractors to win compensation claims.
Signs of Employer Negligence
There are some clear signs that an employer is negligent, however, and if these are present and you can prove them, then getting compensation will be much easier. If the employer failed to provide the subcontractor with sufficient protection equipment, then it can be counted as negligence. If the subcontractor has to use tools and machinery provided by the employer and these were not maintained properly, then this could also be counted as negligence. If the employer did not follow code regulations for safety and you can demonstrate this, then negligence should be very easy to prove.
What if the Damage Was Caused by a Third Party?
If the injury was caused by a third party, they may be the only one responsible or you may be able to sue them and the employer. If you get injured by another subcontractor on the site, for instance, and it was entirely their fault, then they’re the ones you’ll need to sue. If there was negligence in the way that contractor was employed, on the other hand, or how they were directed by the employer, then you could both sue the employer and the contractor.
There are also cases where the injury was caused by the equipment you brought to the site. If you properly maintained your equipment and it malfunctioned and you suffered injury as a result, then you could have a case against the equipment manufacturer. These cases have to be handled by experts, however, as only a handful of lawyers truly know how to prove and mitigate those cases. Here, it would be a good idea to work with a malfunctioning equipment lawyer firm like Romanucci and Blandin. They will take all the steps necessary to prove your case and get you the maximum compensation possible whether it’s through a settlement or a court judgment.
Negligence cases can be tough to prove when you work as a subcontractor, but you should know your rights and enforce them if you feel like you were wronged. Make sure that you get the right team, get medical help as soon as possible to help establish your case, and know exactly who’s responsible for your injuries if you want to get the compensation you deserve.