Posted August 17, 2020
Businesses are reopening across the United States, ending the months-long trend of working from home. But now, major companies across the country are dealing with a new issue–workplace lawsuits as employees contract COVID-19.
Though employers are rarely found liable for an employee death caused by an illness because of the difficulty of proving fault and the limitations on legal action, employers are petitioning Congress for immunity from COVID-19 related lawsuits.
For families of workers who have contracted COVID-19 in the workplace, there is some hope that liability will be granted. Mostly, legal action can be pursued when an employer fails to abide by state and federal guidelines for COVID-19 protection. However, the problem is that with many nonessential businesses reopening the window for such legal action may be limited.
Common legal complaints being filed against businesses right now include:
- Unsafe working conditions
- Failure to isolate sick employees
- Failure to provide personal protective equipment and implement other safety measures
- Failure to close the business after a COVID-19 outbreak
While there are proposed protections being debated for business immunity from lawsuits and protections for health care entities, schools, and other businesses, immunity would only apply where “reasonable efforts” to comply with such mandates were met. In addition, COVID-19 related liability cases would go to federal courts.
The bill also includes provisions for a cap on punitive damages, giving employers the capability to countersue on allegations that are meritless. It also allows for the “Department of Justice to sue attorneys who exhibit a ‘pattern’ of coronavirus lawsuits”. If approved, the bill may last through 2024.
With these actions up for debate, those who have contracted the novel coronavirus at work may be wondering if pursuing a lawsuit is even worth it.
Our COVID-19 injury lawyers believe that if you have been injured as a result of COVID-19 or have lost a loved one from the neglect of a company in complying with COVID-19 mandates, you should act now.
COVID-19 Employee Rights – Workplace Lawsuits
You need to work to provide for your family. But when your health is jeopardized as a result of an employer’s neglect, you need to act quickly. These are uncertain times, but that does not mean you should let your employer take advantage of you. Though these lawsuits can be difficult, it’s important that your voice is heard.
If you contracted COVID-19 in the workplace, we implore you to contact our COVID-19 injury lawyers. We defend employees across the United States who have been wronged by their employers.
Posted in COVID-19.