When it comes to employee rights and railroad worker injuries, railroad workers can turn to the Federal Employers Liability Act, or FELA. FELA provides protection to the thousands of individuals who work in the U.S. railroad industry all across the country.
FELA has existed since 1908. Basically, it is not that different from typical workers’ compensation insurance organizations. However, is still a separate and different system. Under FELA, injured railroad workers can make claims to their railroad companies or responsible employees. Those claims can be initiated as a sate or federal lawsuit as well.
In addition to providing an avenue for employees to seek compensation for their injuries, FELA also offers a uniform liability standard to railroads and their workers with regard to workplace safety conditions. However, just because this valuable system exists does not mean that all Virginia residents know how to navigate it.
This is where an attorney can be very valuable. A claim under FELA can be made without the assistance of a legal counselor, but a lawyer can help claimants complete their claims in the most suitable fashion possible. A lawyer may also be able to identify certain legal strategies that might not be readily obvious to a layperson. An attorney can also help claimants appeal a claim that has already been filed but was previously denied. Sometimes, it can be very difficult for claimants to navigate the legal system like this — especially when claimants are severely injured. Indeed, an injured worker should be able to focus on healing, resting and getting better. Plaintiffs should not have to worry about legal complexities.
Source: FindLaw, “Railroad Worker Injuries / FELA – Overview,” accessed May 06, 2016