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Worker suffers paralysis but boss offers no workers' compensation

Construction workers in Texas are asking for better protection. They seek proper safety training and adequate rest breaks. While other states require employers to provide workers' compensation insurance, it is optional in Texas. This leaves many workers destitute after workplace accidents that often cause catastrophic injuries that may lead to paralysis, paraplegia or even death.

It is claimed that more construction worker deaths occur in Texas than in other states, and those who are fortunate enough to survive construction accidents commonly face a multitude of hardships. An example of a family's suffering is a roofer who fell from a height of about 20 feet while working on a roof of a building under construction. According to the report, the man and his wife held full-time jobs to generate funds for their daughter's studies. However, the tragic accident left the worker paralyzed below his chest.

The roofer's employer had no workers' compensation insurance, leaving him responsible for all medical and other expenses. He needed full-time care, and his wife had to leave her job to care for him. With no income from the husband and his wife, their daughter had to leave college to find employment that would provide some level of financial support for her family. Following a drawn out lawsuit, the paralyzed worker was awarded some financial recompense, but he received only a small portion because the company he had worked for had been declared insolvent in the interim.

Texas workers who have suffered catastrophic injuries that resulted in paralysis or other life-changing conditions may face similar hardships. Taking timely action to pursue a personal injury claim against an uninsured employer may be appropriate, depending on the facts undelying the accident. It is understandable that a worker and family may want to get over the initial shock of their dire situation immediately after the accident, but retaining the services of an experienced personal injury attorney without delay may be beneficial. A lawyer will immediately set the wheels in motion to investigate the accident and, when appropriate, pursue a claim that may provide the family with fair compensation.

Source: tribtalk.org, "Honor the dignity of the workers who build Texas", Emily Timm, Feb. 24, 2015

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