Work Injury Lawyer


All employees have the right to a safe and healthy work environment. It is the responsibility of the employer to ensure that safety precautions are in place in order to protect the employee from injury. However, workplace injuries are an unfortunate reality for employees across various industries. While the majority of workplace injuries happen to construction and manufacturing workers, on-the-job injuries can occur at virtually any job to any type of employee.

According to OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Organization), there were 70,241 Severe Injury Reports from 2015-2021. Private industry employers reported 2.8 million nonfatal workplace injuries and illnesses in 2022 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Add to that the staggering number of less severe injuries and even workplace fatalities that workers and their families have to cope with.

After an injury it can be daunting to deal with medical bills, lost wages, and Workers’ Compensation claims while recovering from an injury, but there is help for you as you navigate the often complex issues that arise after an injury.

Sotiriou Wilmowski can guide you through that process. With over 35 years of combined experience and dedication to providing personalized assistance, Deme Sotiriou and Tom Wilmowski are one of Missouri’s and Southern Illinois’s top personal injury lawyers and have secured a number of million dollar settlements for their clients. Their 5 Star rating and client testimonials speak to their professionalism and success.

Reach out today by calling (314) 925-1000 to discuss the most appropriate next steps as you pursue a legal claim for fair compensation. A free and confidential case evaluation will put your mind at ease as your questions and concerns can be addressed by an experienced attorney.

Common Workplace Injuries

The most common workplace injuries are physical strains, machine-related accidents, vehicle accidents, and slip and fall injuries.

These are only a few of the possible on-the-job injuries that may befall a worker:

  • Physical strains: In labor-intensive industries like construction and manufacturing, physical strains and sprains are common. Repetitive motions, lifting heavy objects, and awkward postures can lead to musculoskeletal issues, necessitating legal assistance to address medical costs and lost wages.
  • Machine-related accidents: St. Louis’s industrial sectors involve various machines, posing risks like crush injuries, fractures, and amputations. Employers must enforce strict safety measures and comprehensive training to minimize hazards related to machinery operation.
  • Vehicle accidents: With a thriving transportation industry, workplace vehicle accidents are a concern. Whether driving a company vehicle or commuting, employees may face accidents resulting in injuries. Legal guidance is essential for determining liability and seeking compensation for medical expenses.
  • Slip and fall injuries: Slip and fall injuries are the most common types of workplace injuries. A simple incident can cause head, neck and spinal injuries, and can even cause the worker to fall into something sharp causing lacerations, scarring and disfigurement.

Legal Options for Injured Employees

You or a loved one has been injured while at work. What’s next?

If you’ve sustained an injury while on the job in Missouri, understanding your legal options is crucial to ensuring you receive fair compensation for your damages. Generally, individuals injured in the workplace have three main avenues for seeking compensation: workers’ compensation claims, personal injury lawsuits against an employer, and personal injury lawsuits against third parties who may be liable for the injury.

Workers’ Compensation

Workers’ compensation (“workers’ comp”) is a system designed to provide benefits to employees who are injured on the job, regardless of fault. In Missouri, most employers are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance, which covers medical expenses, lost wages, and rehabilitation costs for employees injured while performing work-related duties. One advantage of workers’ compensation is that it provides benefits regardless of who is at fault for the injury. However, the trade-off is that employees typically cannot sue their employer for additional damages beyond what is provided by the workers’ compensation system.

Note that the claims process can be hard to navigate alone without legal representation. Even if you’re going the workers’ comp route, consider hiring a workers’ comp attorney to make sure you are fairly compensated.

Personal Injury Lawsuits

On the other hand, a personal injury claim against an employer involves filing a civil lawsuit seeking compensation for damages resulting from the injury. Unlike workers’ compensation claims, personal injury lawsuits require the injured party to prove that the employer’s negligence or intentional actions directly caused the injury. While these lawsuits may potentially result in higher compensation than workers’ compensation benefits, they also require meeting a higher burden of proof.

Workers’ Compensation vs. Personal Injury Lawsuits

In Missouri, the ability to sue your employer for a workplace injury is limited by the state’s workers’ compensation laws. Generally, if you’ve been injured while on the job, you must use the workers’ compensation system to seek benefits provided by your employer’s insurance coverage. Workers’ compensation is considered the exclusive remedy for workplace injuries in Missouri, meaning that in most cases, employees cannot sue their employer directly for additional damages beyond what is available through workers’ compensation benefits.

However, there are limited circumstances where you may be allowed to file a lawsuit against your employer, such as when the employer’s intentional actions or egregious negligence directly contributed to the injury. These situations are relatively rare and often require substantial evidence to support a successful lawsuit against the employer. Therefore, in most cases of workplace injury in Missouri, employees are required to utilize the workers’ compensation system to receive compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, and other related damages

Third-Party Liability Lawsuits

In cases where a third party, such as a contractor, manufacturer, or property owner, may be partially or fully responsible for the workplace injury, the injured employee may have the option to file a personal injury lawsuit against that party. These lawsuits, known as third-party liability claims, allow the injured party to pursue compensation beyond what is available through workers’ compensation benefits. This option can be particularly beneficial if the third party’s negligence significantly contributed to the injury or if additional damages not covered by workers’ compensation are incurred.

Consulting with an experienced Missouri personal injury lawyer who specializes in workplace injuries can help injured employees understand their rights and pursue the most appropriate legal option to obtain fair compensation for their damages.


Main Causes of Accidents in the Workplace

There are countless causes of work-related injuries and work accidents. Many injuries are due to unsafe conditions that could have been prevented by management or by a third party. Here are just a few examples of frequent causes:

  • inadequate training
  • insufficient equipment maintenance
  • lack of supervision
  • safety violations
  • exposure to toxic chemicals
  • missing or obstructed signage
  • faulty equipment
  • poorly designed office settings

Some of these causes may be the fault of your employer, or they could be the fault of a third party, like a supplier.

What should I do after an accident at Work?

Report the accident. It’s important to remember to report the accident to your employer or supervisor immediately. In Missouri, failure to report the accident within 30 days may jeopardize your ability to receive benefits from Workers’ Compensation.

Seek medical treatment. Even when the injury may not seem severe or catastrophic, you should likely seek medical care. Prioritize your health now for your sake and the sake of your family as there may be unforeseen complications that may arise later. And make sure that this injury is part of your medical records.

Consult an attorney. Don’t delay in contacting a work injury lawyer who can guide you through a potentially difficult claim. Do not agree to accept compensation from your employer or sign anything. You have every right to consult an attorney who could negotiate with your employer or insurance company on your behalf. And, you want to make sure to speak with an attorney before the statute of limitations might pass.

Do I Need a Work Injury Attorney?

It can be intimidating dealing with insurance companies and supervisors as they may encourage an injured worker to accept responsibility or sign documents.

Our experienced legal team can take away your stress by being your diligent advocate. In addition to the medical expenses incurred as a result of your injury, your physical pain, suffering, emotional distress and loss of future earnings matter.If you have experienced a workplace injury in Missouri or Southern Illinois, take action today to start the process of healing – both physically and financially.

Call or text the law firm of Sotiriou Wilmowski at (314) 925-1000 for a free consultation. We are available for you 24/7 and look forward to helping you secure justice and maximize compensation for your injuries.

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Committed to advocating for the Injured. Get the legal guidance you deserve, reach out to our team and get a Free Consultation today!

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