Earlier this month, the Georgia Court of Appeals issued a written opinion in a workplace injury lawsuit brought by a man who was working as an independent contractor when he stepped into a puddle of hazardous chemicals. The case required the court to determine if the defendant company violated any duty that it owed to the plaintiff. Finding that the company fulfilled any duty it had to the plaintiff, the court dismissed the plaintiff’s lawsuit.
Workplace Injury Cases Generally
There are two types of Georgia workplace injury cases. The first is a Georgia workers’ compensation claim. These claims are appropriate when the worker’s injury is caused while on the job, and the party responsible for the worker’s injury is either the worker himself or his employer.
If, however, the worker was injured due to the negligence of a third party, a Georgia personal injury lawsuit may be appropriate. Georgia personal injury cases are often preferred to workers’ compensation cases because the compensation amount in personal injury cases tends to be more significant.
The Facts of the Case
The plaintiff worked for a company that provided insulation contract work. The plaintiff’s employer contracted with the defendant to provide some insulation services on a series of chemical tanks. Thus, the plaintiff was not employed by the defendant.
While he was working on the defendant’s chemical tanks, the plaintiff was climbing down a ladder and stepped into a puddle he thought to be water. He later found out it was a hazardous chemical, and he suffered serious chemical burns as a result of the exposure. Since the defendant was not his employer, the plaintiff filed a Georgia personal injury lawsuit against the defendant.
The defendant asked the court to dismiss the case, based on the preventative actions it took to prevent this very type of injury. The defendant explained that it required all contractors and their employees to attend a training on the specific types of chemicals they would encounter while working on the defendant’s tanks. Additionally, the defendant placed numerous signs warning contractors about the presence of the dangerous chemicals.
The court determined that the defendant did owe the plaintiff a duty of care to provide a safe workplace, but the defendant fulfilled that duty by taking precautionary measures to prevent injuries. As a result, the plaintiff’s case was dismissed. However, the plaintiff may still have been eligible for workers’ compensation benefits because Georgia workers’ compensation claims do not require proof of fault.
Have You Been Injured in a Georgia Workplace Accident?
If you or a loved one has recently been injured in a Georgia workplace accident, you may be entitled to compensation through one or more types of workplace injury claims. The skilled Georgia personal injury and workers’ compensation attorneys at McAleer Law have extensive experience representing injured workers in all types of workplace injury cases. Call 404-622-5337 to schedule a free consultation with an attorney to discuss your case today.
See More Posts:
Georgia Appellate Court Affirms Summary Judgment in Favor of Defendant in Recent Car Accident Case, Georgia Injury Attorney Blog, July 5, 2017.
Appellate Court Finds Student “Assumed the Risk” of Drowning in Recent Georgia Wrongful Death Case, Georgia Injury Attorney Blog, August 22, 2017.