Warehousing ranks among the most dangerous industries for injuries to employees. Warehouses are usually busy with the activity of workers, forklifts, and machinery moving heavy boxes and cargo. The nature of a warehouse can create the conditions for a worker to suffer a workplace accident and serious injuries.
In many cases, a warehouse injury can be attributed to a lack of training or safety procedures, inadequate maintenance, defective equipment or machinery, or the carelessness or recklessness of other workers in the warehouse. A warehouse worker injured on the job may be entitled to workers’ compensation if his or her employer has workers’ compensation insurance. But Texas does not require businesses to have workers’ compensation.
An experienced warehouse injury lawyer can help you understand your legal options and vigorously represent your rights and interests. With more than 100 years of combined legal experience, the personal injury attorneys of Herrman & Herrman have helped thousands of injured people successfully obtain financial compensation for their injuries.
We know how hard the people in Texas communities work. That’s why we work just as hard to ensure our clients receive aggressive legal representation. When you choose our firm to assist you with your case, you can expect our attorneys to be by your side throughout the legal process. We’ll do all of the hard work to prepare a persuasive legal claim that addresses your medical and financial needs. Our attorneys are committed to providing you with the personalized attention and service you need during this difficult time in your life.
Contact us today for a free initial case review if you have suffered a work-related warehouse injury in Brownsville or McAllen, Texas. We’re ready to listen to your story and help you understand your options for pursuing financial recovery. Our firm has four office locations in Corpus Christi, Corpus Christi South Side, Brownsville, McAllen, San Antonio, Houston, and Ft. Worth to serve you. Our English and Spanish-speaking staff is here to serve all the members of our community.
Causes of Warehouse Injuries
Warehouses can be dangerous places to work. Warehouse employees face the risk of numerous different types of accidents. Among the most common types of warehouse accidents that cause worker injuries are:
- Slip-and-fall or trip-and-fall accidents – Slip-and-fall and trip-and-fall accidents account for a significant share of warehouse accidents. Warehouses can have many different slipping or tripping hazards, including slick concrete floors, spilled liquids, boxes or debris on the floor, loose cables, cords, or wires strewn across aisles or walking paths.
- Lifting accidents – Warehouse workers load and unload cargo and process orders. They often must lift by hand heavy loads as part of their job duties. Employees can injure themselves if they lack the training or equipment to lift heavy objects safely. Constant lifting of heavy objects can also lead to muscle strains and repetitive stress injuries for workers.
- Machinery/equipment accidents – Warehouses are filled with numerous pieces of machinery and equipment, including forklifts, conveyors, and various packing machinery. Unfortunately, carelessness, operator error, and a lack of proper safety equipment can lead to workers getting caught in or injured by machinery or equipment.
- Falling object accidents – Warehouse employees often must stack products on shelves that reach dozens of feet high. When a worker must retrieve a product from a high shelf, they run the risk of the object accidentally falling on top of them or someone else. Falling object accidents can also occur when items are not properly shelved or when the shelving itself is not properly constructed, potentially causing a tip-over or collapse of the shelving.
- Falls from heights – Warehouse employees sometimes may have to work on scaffolding or on elevated platforms or high shelves. Without the proper training and fall protection safety equipment, they face the possibility of accidentally falling from an elevated height.
Common Warehouse Injuries
Warehouse accidents can lead to many kinds of serious and life-threatening injuries for warehouse workers, such as:
- Severe lacerations and bruising
- Ligament sprains and tears
- Tendon and muscle strains or tears
- Neck and back injuries, including herniated disc injuries
- Dislocated joints
- Broken bones
- Repetitive stress injuries
- Head injuries, including eye trauma
- Traumatic brain injury
- Spinal cord injuries and paralysis
- Crush injuries
- Perforation injuries, such as being impaled by a forklift
- Electrocution injuries
- Exposure to toxic or hazardous substances
Filing a Warehouse Injury Claim
If you are injured while working in a warehouse job, you may be entitled to file a claim for workers’ compensation benefits from your employer. However, Texas does not require employers to carry workers’ compensation insurance. Employers may choose to opt out of the workers’ compensation system. If your employer does not have workers’ compensation insurance, you may have a right to file a personal injury claim against the employer if the employer caused your warehouse injury.
In some cases, your warehouse injury may have been caused by the negligence or fault of a third party other than you, your employer, or your co-worker. For example, you may be working at a warehouse complex where a general contractor and multiple subcontractor companies are all active. If you were injured by the negligence of another subcontractor at the same site, you may bring a claim against the other business that is acting as a subcontractor or general contractor.
You may have been injured by a piece of machinery that was designed without safety equipment that would have prevented you from being injured. When another party (other than your employer) bears fault for your warehouse injury, you may also choose to file a personal injury claim seeking compensation for your injuries.
Filing a personal injury claim after a warehouse accident begins with investigating the accident to secure evidence that can substantiate your personal injury claim. When you contact Herrman & Herrman about your warehouse injury, our firm can investigate the circumstances and collect evidence about the accident and your injury.
A personal injury claim for a warehouse injury often involves preparing a demand letter to present to the liable party or their insurer. A demand letter will set forth evidence and arguments in favor of the other party’s liability, document the losses you have incurred, and demand an amount of compensation to settle the claim. The demand letter may start the process of negotiation to try to reach a settlement of your personal injury claim.
If a mutually agreeable settlement cannot be reached between you and the at-fault party or parties, you may need to file a lawsuit to pursue your warehouse injury claim. The personal injury litigation process begins with discovery, where the parties exchange relevant evidence and information and take deposition testimony from witnesses and experts.
In many cases, our attorneys at Herrman & Herrman are successful in settling injury cases without a trial. If a settlement cannot be reached, we will discuss with you whether you wish to proceed to court. If a verdict is awarded in your favor, the jury and judge will also award you compensation for your injuries and losses.
Can I File an Injury Claim If I’m an Undocumented Immigrant?
Your status as an undocumented status does not affect your right to obtain workers’ compensation benefits or file a personal injury claim if you suffered injuries while working in a warehouse. Immigration status has no bearing on an individual’s right to seek financial compensation for personal injury, including filing a demand for compensation with a liable party’s insurance carrier or filing a lawsuit in court.
Of course, an undocumented immigrant may understandably worry about the prospect of being deported if he or she files a personal injury claim. They may worry that by filing a formal lawsuit in court, they may end up on the radar of federal immigration officials. However, courts typically do not inquire into immigration status when a litigant files suit in court, nor should a litigant’s immigration status come up during a personal injury claim.
If the business being sued by an undocumented immigrant threatens to pursue the immigrant’s deportation in retaliation for the lawsuit, that threat may constitute an unlawful obstruction of civil justice.
An attorney at Herrman & Herrman who is experienced in this area of law can advise an injured undocumented immigrant on any risks and how they can safely bring their claim. The attorney should also assure their client that the information they share with the law firm will remain confidential.
Get in Touch with an Experienced Work Injury Lawyer
If you’ve suffered an on-the-job warehouse injury, it’s important to understand your legal rights and options. Contact Herrman & Herrman online or give us a call at (361) 882-4357 today for a free and confidential consultation with an experienced work injury lawyer.
We have the resources and skills to navigate the most challenging warehouse injury cases. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us if you sustained an injury in Brownsville, McAllen, or the surrounding areas in Texas. We’ll take the time to understand your challenges and chart the best course forward and help ensure you receive the maximum benefits you are entitled to.