Railroad employees are covered by their own laws. Those laws follow the
Federal Railroad Safety Act, or FELA. FELA laws are designed to keep injuries
from occurring in railroad environments. Railroading accidents, which
were frequent up until the 1970 law, hold the railroad responsible for
placing their workers in harm’s way.
Railroad workers do not have any workers’ compensation laws in the
United States because they are covered by FELA laws. The basic premise
of the law says that railroads are often liable for any person injury
while employed by a railroad. The thinking behind the law was to shift
the blame from workers compensation offices at the state and federal levels
to the railroads. Under FELA laws, a railroad is liable to its employees
for any injuries suffered due to negligence – and the standard is
quite strict. The only requirement for the injury to fall under FELA protection
is that railroad on which the employee worked must be an entity of interstate
commerce; and that that individual was injured while employed; and that
there was negligence. And if a railroad worker dies after being injured,
his claim survives. The law realizes, of course, that negligence of employees
is also a cause of injury or death.
Since Railroad workers do not have workers’ compensation, it’s
essential that an attorney representing a railroad employee be versed
not only in FELA statues and standards, but that they know railroad litigation.
The goals of any lawsuit are simple: an injured person needs to be compensated
fully and adequately for their injury. And just like any other personal
injury lawsuit, medical issues or aggravation of any pre-existing medical
conditions are taken into consideration. Of course, the railroad has the
burden to prove that the victim failed to use good judgment to avoid injury.
Once a settlement is reached, the victim can ask for damages for pain
and suffering, based on the nature, extent and duration of the injuries.
This also includes any mental or emotional damage or disorder.
An attorney with a focus in railroad litigation is critical in providing
you the financial compensation you deserve. The Doan Law Firm can assist
in determining damages owed you for a railroad accident. The Doan Law
Firm knows that train accidents don’t wait for daylight hours to
happen, so we’re available to answer your phone call any time, day
or night, at