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What is FELA?

What is FELA?

One of the more uncommon laws in the U.S. legal system is known as FELA. Short for the Federal Employers Liability Act, FELA is a United States federal law that protects and compensates railroad workers who are injured on the job. Prior to the law being established in 1908, there was no type of coverage or protection for injured railroad workers. Ultimately, the law has proved extremely beneficial for many, as railroad working can be a dangerous profession.

What Does FELA Cover?

During the beginning of the 19th century, railroad use in the United States had expanded nearly six times as fast as it had in previous years. Due to this rapid expansion, there was an increase in the number of railroad workers, and therefore, an increase in the sustained bodily injuries. As a result, FELA sought to cover the injuries of the affected workers, leading us to the Federal Employers Liability Act that now covers a variety of these injuries.

Not only does FELA cover bodily injuries, but also injuries caused by asbestos exposure, chronic stress and traumatic injuries.

How Can I Receive Benefits?

FELA is very similar to the workers’ compensation insurance that is provided in different industries. However, unlike workers’ compensation, FELA is a system based on fault. This means that if a railroad worker is injured on the job, he or she must prove the injury was caused by the negligence of a railroad employee, an agent, or a defective piece of equipment. Moreover, FELA utilizes a legal doctrine known as “comparative negligence.” This doctrine says that the jury will determine the percentage of negligence that each party is at fault for. The jury will ultimately decide the percentage of the compensatory damages that are allocated to the injured worker.

When to Call an Attorney

If you are injured on the job, it is important that you take the appropriate steps to defend your rights. Be sure to seek the necessary medical treatment right away and contact the legal professionals at the Khonsari Law Group. Our legal team can guide you through the legal process and help you garner the compensation you deserve. To learn more about how the Khonsari Law Group and how we can help your case, contact us today or click here to schedule a free consultation.

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