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How Does Workers’ Compensation Apply to Workplace Violence?

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After you’ve been part of the Muncie workforce for a short while, you begin to have stronger ties to the community. Friendships between coworkers make the work days pass faster and with more enjoyment. However, in some cases, personal issues have been known to carry over into the work day that started after work hours. In extreme cases, violence in the Muncie workplace can happen. If injuries occur from an altercation with another coworker that leaves you injured on the job, workers’ compensation may be a source to help cover costs for medical and other expenses.

Defining Workplace Violence

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According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), workplace violence is any act of physical violence, harassment, intimidation, or other threatening disruptive behavior that occurs at the work site. In addition to OSHA’s definition, Indiana defines workplace violence as unwarranted assaultive or coercive behaviors, including threats, rude or offensive touching, intimidation, harassment, property damage, sabotage, or any violation of a protective order.

Typically, violence is associated with physical harm, but both OSHA and Indiana say that’s not the case, which widens the scope of violence in your workplace. Threats and verbal abuse are included in this definition as well as physical assault and more. The main purpose of OSHA is to help employers create safe and healthy environments for employees to work in, and OSHA acknowledges that workplace violence is a major concern nationwide.

Violence in the Muncie Workplace

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Say you and a coworker have an altercation that leaves you injured. There’s more to receiving benefits through your workers’ compensation than proving your injury — you have to prove the altercation occurred in your workplace. Personal issues that get carried over into the workplace do not qualify, and each case is different.

The general rule of thumb for violence that happens in the workplace is to be able to prove that the altercation began or was related to the relationship as employees/coworkers. Violence that occurs at the workplace between two spouses, for example, would typically not qualify for workers’ compensation (although there are exceptions).

Proving this can be difficult, and this type of case does take more time to pursue than a typical workers’ compensation claim. However, you are still entitled to compensation.

Similar to a Muncie car accident, determining fault is extremely important, and the quicker that can be done, the quicker your case can move forward. It is the same way with workplace violence cases. Determining the cause of the Muncie workplace violence is crucial and takes time; therefore, you might not be able to receive your benefits right away.

Hire a Muncie Workers’ Compensation Attorney

Extreme cases like workplace violence do happen. It’s best to know your options and how to best respond to receive your complete compensation because there is more to consider than just your personal injury: your employment status and coworker relationship may also be on the line. Allow attorneys to take the responsibility of fighting for your compensation while you focus on getting better, doing your job well, and mending relationships if possible. If you find yourself in such an unfortunate situation as a workplace violence, don’t wait to seek help from an attorney. Call Hensley Legal Group today or contact us online for your free consultation.