Can I sue my employer for injuries sustained on the job?

One of the most common questions injured employees ask is whether they can sue their employers for getting hurt on the job. The answer depends on the circumstances surrounding the injury. Michigan, like many other states, has adopted what is called an exclusive remedy provision. In exchange for employers providing workers’ compensation insurance to all employees, there is a regulation which then prohibits employees from suing their employers for their injuries.

As a result, the answer to the above question is often “no, you cannot sue your employer.” This makes the recovery of proper workers’ comp benefits all the more important. A local Saginaw area workers’ comp lawyer will try to enable you to recoup medical expenses and lost wages caused by the accident.

Still, employees need to know that the exclusive remedy provision is not absolute. For instance, a federal court recently refused to apply the provision in a case involving some 300 employees that claim to have been injured by toxic fumes at a BP refinery. While the reason a court will refuse to exempt the employer from tort liability will differ from cases to case, generally, the employee must show the employer acted intentionally.

This can be a difficult burden to carry, but one that could have significant financial implications. If you or a loved one has been injured on the job, it is a good idea to consider discussing your situation with a local Saginaw area lawyer. These experienced professionals will not only help you evaluate your entitlement to workers’ compensation benefits, but also review whether additional avenues for relief are available.

Source: Business Insurance, “Workers comp exclusive remedy doesn’t apply in liability lawsuit against BP,” Sheena Harrison, January 12, 2015,