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When you are injured while working, you may think the railroad you work for will offer you a fair settlement to help compensate you for the injuries you’ve endured. However, this is unfortunately not the case for the majority of railroad injuries. As such, understanding how railroad injury damages are calculated is crucial to ensuring you can recover the compensation you deserve. Additionally, the following blog explores how a FELA lawyer can help you fight for justice.

What Damages Am I Entitled to Under FELA?

The Federal Employers’ Liability Act (FELA) is a set of laws to help ensure the safety of rail workers by holding employers liable when their negligence leads to injury. This differs from workers’ compensation in that rail employees must prove their employer was at least partially negligent to receive compensation.

Under FELA, you are entitled to economic and non-economic damages you’ve suffered because of the injury. Generally, your economic damages refer to the medical expenses and lost wages you’ve endured because of your injury. These are easy to calculate as there is a quantifiable monetary amount associated with them.

Non-economic damages are more difficult to calculate, as they represent subjective damages like pain and suffering, mental anguish, and loss of enjoyment of life.

How Will My Railroad Injury Damages Be Determined?

It can be challenging to calculate the damages you’ve suffered because of the railroad’s negligence. Generally, your pain and suffering and other non-economic damages will be evaluated based on several factors to determine their value. These factors include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Your age and health
  • How the injury impacts your day-to-day life
  • Whether the injury prevents you from doing the things you once enjoyed
  • Testimony from your doctor about the severity and impacts of your injury
  • How the injury prevents your ability to earn a living

Once these damages have been calculated, it’s important to note that FELA follows a comparative negligence statute for injuries. This means that the award you recover will be reduced by your percentage of fault in the accident. For example, if you are awarded $100,000 for your injuries but it’s determined that you were 25% liable, your award will be reduced by 25%.

Why Do I Need a Lawyer for this Process?

Though you may think your employer will treat you fairly when determining how much to offer from your injuries, they will likely do everything possible to avoid compensating you fairly by trying to prove they did not contribute to your accident. As such, connecting with an experienced attorney can help you avoid the common missteps that can cost you the funds you deserve.

At Doran & Murphy, we understand how devastating it can be to sustain an injury while working on a railroad. Not only does it cause pain, but some injuries can affect you for the rest of your life. However, it’s even more upsetting when you have to fight for justice. That’s why our team is dedicated to helping you through these matters by handling the legal complexities of the case. We will do everything we can to fight for you. Contact us today to learn more.