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Can you receive workers’ compensation for workplace violence?

On Behalf of | Jul 23, 2023 | Workers' Compensation

Most individuals in the workforce understand quite well that workers’ compensation benefits exist to cover damages incurred as a result of a workplace incident that causes injury or illness. What might not be immediately clear is whether or not that coverage extends to injuries that occur as a result of workplace violence.

Companies and businesses have an obligation to provide a safe workplace for their employees, and you may understandably feel that your employer is failing in that obligation if you become a victim of workplace violence. You can better understand your rights to compensation by learning more about how workers’ compensation pertains to workplace violence.

What constitutes workplace violence?

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration defines workplace violence as any act or threat of violence, harassment, or intimidation at a work site. This can include physical assault or even verbal abuse. According to OSHA’s standards, violent behavior at a work site can constitute workplace violence regardless of whether or not the offender is affiliated with the business.

When can you receive compensation for workplace violence?

Your workers’ compensation benefits apply to injuries you suffer either in the course of performing work-related tasks or due to your employer’s negligence in maintaining a safe work environment. This means that you can likely receive worker’s compensation for violent acts committed by a supervisor or coworker. However, actions taken by a customer or other unaffiliated individual are outside the scope of what the company can control and therefore might not fall under your workers’ compensation coverage.

You can receive workers’ compensation for instances of workplace violence that arise due to your employer’s negligence. If you suffer injuries due to violence not covered by your workers’ compensation policy, it may be necessary to pursue other legal action.