Four fingers cut off by saw...

by Anonymous

I'm inquiring for my 26 year old son, who recently lost all four fingers on his left hand due to a saw accident at work in Montana. The saw did not have adequate safety guards in place at the time of the accident. His fingers were too badly damaged and had to be amputated at the bottom knuckle, right at the palm.

What are his options as far as workers' compensation and a possible lawsuit for the lack of proper safety equipment? Should he get a lump sum payout from workers' comp? He has heard different things from different lawyers he has contacted, so I'm trying to get a clearer picture as to what his options are. Thank you.

Visitor Question:
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ANSWER for "Four fingers cut off by saw...":

Anonymous (Montana):

It is our policy here at not to interfere with the attorney-client relationship. To do so would be inappropriate. If your son has retained counsel, his best interests will be served by heeding the advice and counsel of his attorney.

However if your son has not yet retained counsel, an injury as serious as his requires the expertise of a workers' compensation attorney. There is just too much to lose if your son pursues his worker's compensation claim alone, and without legal representation.

Additionally, with an experienced workers' comp attorney, your son is likely to receive a larger settlement. And your son's settlement will not be lessened by attorney's fees, as the state of Montana is responsible for those fees.

For a review of the Worker's Compensation rates in the State of Montana go here:
Montana Department of Labor and Industry

In addition to a workers' compensation claim, your son may have the basis of a personal injury claim against his employer. While in the great majority of cases, employees covered by workers' comp can not sue their employers for injuries sustained while on the job, the law sometimes makes an exception.

If your son is able to show his injuries would not have occurred but for his employer's gross negligence or wanton disregard for safety, then your son may be able to seek additional compensation from his employer.

However, to pursue such a claim will require the services of an experienced personal injury attorney. It is fair to say your son's employer isn't going to admit he or she was grossly negligent or displayed a wanton disregard for the safety of workers.

As a result, your son's only option would be legal action. And unless your son is an experienced personal injury attorney, he will definitely not be able to take on his employer or his employer's insurance company.

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from an attorney licensed in your state. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Judge Calisi

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