PORTLAND WORKPLACE ACCIDENT LAWYERStart your free case review
We Handle Worksite
& Industrial Accident Claims in Portland
and Throughout Oregon
Industrial Accident Cases
More than 1,000 deaths occur each year in U.S. industrial accidents. Of this broad definition of work, construction trades worker fatalities make up the largest number each year: 621 in 2009 and 530 in 2010, according to the National Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries in 2010, compiled by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics.
At Johnston Law Firm, P.C., we are sensitive to this issue and strive to protect the rights of people who have lost loved ones due to job site fatalities and people who have been severely injured on work sites throughout the entire personal injury lawsuit.
Construction sites and industrial environments contain a multitude of dangerous and potentially unsafe conditions, that can cause a Portland workplace injury, no matter how diligent workers and employers are. If you or a loved one is an injured worker, our Portland work site accident lawyer, Marc A. Johnston, can work thoughtfully and aggressively to pursue the benefits and compensation you are entitled to.
Contact us today to schedule a free initial consultation. It is critical to discuss your options with an experienced lawyer before negotiating or issuing recorded statements to any insurance company or even to your employer. If it is the right thing to do, we will help you file your personal injury claim and help you get the compensation you deserve!
What to Do After a
Workplace Accident in Portland, Oregon
Were you hurt in a workplace accident in Portland, Multnomah County, or elsewhere in the wider region? It is absolutely essential that you know what to do to protect yourself, your safety, and your legal rights when workplace injuries occur. Too many injured workers make avoidable mistakes that undermine their own best interests. A proactive approach is an absolute must. Here are four important things to do after workplace accident in Oregon:
- See a Doctor (Medical Needs are Top Priority): If you have been injured, your first priority should be to seek medical attention. There is nothing more important than your safety, health, and overall well-being. You need to see a doctor to get the treatment you need to recover. It is also required to bring a work injury claim.
- Notify Your Employer of the Accident: Your employer should be notified of the accident as soon as possible. Not only will this ensure that they are aware of the situation, it is a required step in a workers’ compensation claim in Oregon. If you do not notify your employer in a timely manner, you may not be able to bring a claim at all.
- Proactively Document the Accident and Your Injuries: Because of Oregon’s employer liability law, Be sure to keep a detailed record of the accident and any injuries you sustained. Take photos of the scene, gather witness statements, and keep copies of any medical bills or reports. When pursuing a work injury claim, it is better to have as much relevant evidence as possible.
- Speak to a Portland Workplace Accident Lawyer: You do not have to take on the workers’ compensation claim and/or third party liability claims process alone. The right legal representation can make all of the difference. Consult with an experienced Portland, OR workplace accident lawyer right away after suffering a serious injury.
- Be Ready to Take Immediate Action if Your Claim is Delayed or Denied: Unfortunately, not every injured worker in Portland is able to get their benefits in a timely manner. If your workers’ comp claim was delayed or denied, it is essential that you take swift action to protect your rights and interests. Consult with a top Portland, OR workers’ comp appeal attorney for immediate help.
Workplace Accidents in Portland Can Cause Serious Injuries
Workplace accidents can cause a wide range of different injuries. Regardless of the nature or severity of your job-related accident, our Portland workers’ compensation lawyer is more than ready to help. Here are some of the most common types of injuries in Portland:
- Cuts and Lacerations: These are common in environments where machinery or sharp tools are in use. Not using protective equipment or mishandling tools can lead to these types of injuries. In some cases, deep lacerations require stitches.
- Sprains and Strains: Whether it is due to repetitive movements, heavy lifting, or sudden actions, sprains (of ligaments) and strains (of muscles or tendons) are frequent culprits in the workplace. Sprains and strains require the proper rehabilitative care.
- Fractured or Broken Bones: Broken bones can occur from a variety of incidents, such as falls from a height, slips, or being hit by heavy objects. A broken bone is always a medical emergency. Immediate professional medical care is an absolute must.
- Concussions: A blow to the head, whether from falling objects, collisions, or falls, can result in a concussion. A traumatic brain injury (TBI) that can vary in severity and requires immediate attention. In some cases, TBIs are catastrophic injuries.
- Burn Injuries: Burns are notoriously painful. Burns can occur in numerous settings—from chemical spills in a lab to hot machinery in manufacturing units. There are first-degree to third-degree burns, each increasing in severity.
- Repetitive Strain Injuries (RSI): Often seen in office environments or jobs requiring repetitive motions, RSI affects muscles, nerves, and tendons. Carpal tunnel syndrome is a well-known example. You may also hear these referred to as cumulative trauma injuries.
- Chemical Burns and Inhalation Injuries: Exposure to toxic substances or chemicals can cause burns on the skin or harm the respiratory system if inhaled. Any harm caused by a chemical or other dangerous substance requires immediate emergency attention.
- Hearing Loss: Prolonged exposure to loud noise in the workplace, like in manufacturing or construction sites, can lead to temporary or permanent hearing loss. You have the right to see workers’ comp benefits for a job-related hearing impairment.
- Eye Injuries: Splashes from chemicals, flying debris, or not wearing protective eyewear can lead to injuries ranging from minor irritations to severe vision damage. Portland workers have the right to seek workers’ comp benefits for a vision impairment.
An Overview of the Most Common Workplace Accidents and Injuries in Portland, Oregon
Workplace accidents can happen for a wide range of different reasons. Every incident that leads to a job-related injury in Portland requires a comprehensive investigation. No matter your industry or your job function, you could be hurt on the job. Here are some of the most common causes of workplace injuries in Portland:
- Slips, Trips, and Falls: One of the most prevalent causes of workplace injuries, slips, trips, and falls can happen due to wet floors, uneven surfaces, obstructed pathways, poor lighting, or lack of appropriate signage. Slip and falls can cause serious worker injuries.
- Ergonomic Hazards: The term “ergonomic hazard” relates to the design and condition of the workplace and its equipment. Repetitive motions, poor seating arrangements, and tasks that require lifting heavy objects can lead to musculoskeletal disorders.
- Machinery and Equipment Accidents: Workers who operate heavy machinery, tools, or equipment face risks if these devices malfunction or if the operator is not properly trained. Some examples include employees getting caught in gears or being struck by machinery.
- Motor Vehicle Collisions: Many serious work injuries happen in motor vehicle wrecks. In industries that require transportation—especially heavy vehicle operations—accidents can occur due to poor vehicle maintenance, driver fatigue, or inadequate training.
- Chemical Exposure: Portland’s diverse industries sometimes require the use of chemicals. Without proper safety equipment or training, workers can get exposed to toxic or hazardous chemicals leading to burns, respiratory issues, or other types of long-term health problems.
- Falling Objects: Items that aren’t securely stored on shelves or overhead can fall, leading to head or body injuries. Falling objects are most common in warehouse settings or construction sites. Of course, they can occur in virtually every industry.
- Lack of Proper Worker Training: Many accidents stem from the simple fact that employees are not adequately trained to handle equipment, substances, or situations they encounter in their jobs. Proper training is an absolute must for workers.
- Fires and Explosions: Faulty electrical systems, flammable materials, or improper storage of chemicals can lead to dangerous fires or explosions. Employers must ensure that they have the proper protocols in place to prevent and address fires and explosions.
What to Know About Workers’ Compensation Coverage in Oregon
Oregon Workers compensation is a type of insurance that provides benefits to employees who suffer job- related injuries or illnesses. In Oregon, all employers are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance, and employees who are injured on the job may be eligible for a variety of benefits. Here are some important things that employees should know about workers’ compensation claims:
- No-Fault Benefits: Workers’ compensation is a type of no-fault coverage. You are not required to prove that your employer was “at-fault” for your accident or your illness in order to be eligible to get workers’ compensation benefits. In other words, you can obtain workers’ comp in Oregon even if your employer took all of the proper safety precautions.
- Injury/Illness Must Be Job-Connected: To be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits in Oregon, the injury or illness must have occurred while the employee was on the job, or while performing job-related duties. Oregon uses the “course and scope” standard. In some cases, proving that an injury is work-related can be challenging—especially if the worker was not on their employer’s premises at the time of the accident.
- Medical Care and Wage Replacement Benefits: Workers’ compensation benefits in Oregon can include medical treatment, wage replacement, disability benefits, and vocational rehabilitation. It is imperative that injured workers in Portland are able to secure the maximum available financial benefits. An experienced attorney can help.
- Two Year Statute of Limitations: In Oregon, there is a time limit for filing a workers’ compensation claim. Generally, claims must be filed within two years of the injury or illness. However, you need to report your injury to your employer right away.
- Appeal Rights: Unfortunately, some injured workers in Oregon struggle to get their benefits paid. Neither your employer nor an insurance company has the unilateral right to make the decision on your case. You have the right to appeal a workers’ compensation denial.
Not sure if you have workers compensation or have other questions about the workers compensation system? Give our workers compensation lawyer a call today!
Don’t miss out on these common personal injury mistakes.
Johnston Law Firm:
Fighting for Your Full Compensation
Workers’ compensation laws might apply to the injury you or a loved one has sustained, but the benefits often will not cover all medical costs, lost wages or rehabilitative costs. We can comprehensively evaluate your case for free and establish the full value of your case, including recovery for:
- Previous and future medical expenses
- Lost wages/future earnings
- Pain and suffering
- Long-term care
How much you can recover in financial compensation through a work injury claim depends on a wide range of different factors, including the severity of your injuries and the specific facts of your case. No matter the circumstances, our Portland workers compensation lawyers are standing by, ready to take action to ensure you receive the maximum settlement or verdict.
You May Have a Legal
Claim Against a Negligent Third Party
(Third Party Liability)
You deserve the appropriate and professional legal protections provided by our law firm. We can investigate the accident scene in depth and determine the cause of injury. Third-party negligence could be involved in an equipment, materials or chemical accident, so it is important to work with a skilled attorney who can identify causes and hold responsible parties accountable in a number of situations, including:
- Explosions and burn accidents
- Toxic chemical and substance accidents
- Defective equipment/product accidents
- Road construction accidents
- Falls from heights (beams, scaffolding, ladders)
- Falls in holes
- Falling object accidents
- Severe injuries such as paraplegic or quadriplegic injuries and brain injuries
- Wrongful death and fatalities
It is important to emphasize that there are significant differences in the standard of liability between workers’ compensation claims and third party liability lawsuits. Unlike with workers’ compensation claims—which do not require the injured party to prove fault—third-party liability claims operate on an “at-fault” basis. Among other things, this means that the injured worker must demonstrate that the third party was negligent and that this negligence directly caused the injury. A proactive and comprehensive investigation of a workplace accident is an absolute must in a third party liability claim. Consult with a Portland injury lawyer right away.
Note: In Oregon, the statute of limitations in a third party liability claim is two years. Any personal injury lawsuit against a third party must be filed within two years of the date of a workplace accident. If you wait too long to take action, you may not be eligible to bring a claim at all.
Workplace Accidents in Portland, OR: Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What is Workers’ Compensation Insurance in Oregon?
Workers’ compensation in Oregon is a mandatory insurance program that provides medical and financial benefits to workers who suffer job-related injuries or illnesses. At its foundation, it is a system designed to ensure that injured workers receive necessary medical treatment, wage replacement, and compensation for permanent disabilities.
Do I Get to Choose My Own Doctor After a Workplace Accident in Portland?
Yes—at least for the most part. In Oregon, injured workers have the right to choose their treating doctor, provided that the doctor is authorized to treat workers’ compensation injuries. There are specific requirements and guidelines that doctors must adhere to when treating work-related injuries. Injured workers in Portland need a doctor that they can trust.
Can I Be Fired for Filing a Workers’ Comp Claim in Portland?
No. It is unlawful for employers in Oregon to discriminate against, retaliate, or terminate an employee for filing a workers’ compensation claim. If you believe you have faced such discrimination, you can file a complaint with Oregon’s Bureau of Labor and Industries. You may have an employment law claim against your employer for illegal retaliation.
Can I Still File a Workers’ Comp Claim If I Am Pursuing a Third Party Liability Lawsuit?
Yes. These are not “either/or” legal claims in Oregon. If you were injured on the job in Portland and you believe that your accident was caused by a non-employer third party, you can file a personal injury lawsuit to seek full financial compensation for your damages. At the same time, you can and should still file for workers’ compensation benefits. An attorney can help you navigate the system.
What Happens If I Return to Work But Cannot Perform at My Previous Position?
It depends. In Oregon, if you return to work post-injury but you cannot perform your previous tasks or work the same number of hours, you might be eligible for vocational assistance. This includes training for a new job, job modifications, or even wage subsidies. Furthermore, you could receive compensation for any wage loss difference between your old and new jobs.
How Our Portland, OR
Work Injury Attorney Can Help
Workplace accident claims are complicated. If you have a lot of questions about your rights, your options, and exactly what you need to do to get your claim paid, you are far from alone. Our founding attorney Marc A. Johnston is an experienced and effective advocate for injured workers. We fight proactively for our clients. When you contact our Portland law office, you have a chance to speak to an Oregon workplace accident attorney who can:
- Conduct a free, comprehensive review and evaluation of your case;
- Investigate your accident, gathering the evidence you need to bring a winning claim;
- Advocate for you in any workplace injury settlement negotiations; and
- Take your work injury claim as far as needed to get the best results.
We are a law firm that is on the side of injured workers and their families—not employers or large insurance companies. Our Portland, OR workers’ comp lawyer invests time and resources into each and every case. We encourage you to review stories from our clients, our history of case results, and to reach out to us directly with any specific questions. You can rely on our Portland work injury lawyers for fully personalized legal representation.
Contact Us for a FREE Consultation
– Michelle E.
Mr. Johnston and his firm were incredibly thorough in getting us a fair settlement from our insurance company with little to no pressure. We really appreciated having someone who truly cared about us every step of the way. I would highly recommend the Johnston Law Firm to anyone in need of personal injury representation.
Contact Us Today for a Free Review of Your Workplace Accident Injury Claims
The Johnston Law Firm will evaluate your case for free, and you will work with the same Portland work site injury lawyer throughout your case. Call us at 503-546-3167 or fill out our free confidential case evaluation form on the bottom. Attorney consultations incur no obligation on your part, and all initial consultations are free of charge. We are proud to fight for the rights and interests of injured workers in Portland, Multnomah County, and throughout the wider region in Oregon.
The Johnston Law Firm, LLC proudly represents clients in all cities and counties in Oregon: Portland, Gresham, Milwaukie, Lake Oswego, Tigard, Beaverton, Hillsboro, Multnomah, Washington, Clackamas.
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If you have been seriously injured at no fault of your own, please contact us using the form.
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