Looking At Your Case From Every Angle – Part 1: Workers’ Compensation, Social Security Disability, or Personal Injury?

At Segar & Sciortino, we help injured people get the compensation they deserve, whether that is through workers’ compensation, social security disability, or a personal injury lawsuit. This post will discuss in some depth the difference between these areas of law.

Workers’ Compensation is a benefits system established by law that provides coverage to employees who are injured on the job. Think of it like insurance that your employer pays to cover you in case you get hurt at work. If you are hurt on the job, assuming your injury arises out of your employment, workers’ compensation will pay your lost wages and medical expenses, no matter whose fault the injury is. However, because employers are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance, in exchange, the law prevents employees from suing their employers for most injuries they sustain on the job. While there are some exceptions to that rule, for the most part, you cannot bring a lawsuit against your employer for an on-the-job accident. For more information on Workers’ Compensation, check out our Common Questions Section.

Social Security Disability (SSD) is also a benefits system. Everyone who works pays part of their earnings into the federal social security system through an income tax. Most people understand how social security works for people over age 65, but social security also provides benefits for people who are disabled. If you’ve worked your entire adult life, and you can’t work anymore due to an illness or injury, you could qualify for SSD. SSD, unlike workers’ compensation or accident law, does not depend on someone else causing you harm. Rather, SSD exists to help people regardless of why they can’t work. For more information on whether you might qualify for social security disability, check out our Common Questions Section.

Accident Law, or Personal Injury, is a term applied to lawsuits for injuries caused by someone else’s fault. Many different things can fall under the term “accident law”—a car accident; an assault; a slip and fall; medical malpractice; injuries sustained from a defective product; and construction site injuries, to name a few. The goal of accident law is to help make injured people whole again. While money can’t buy health, sometimes there is no other way to compensate someone for what they lost in an accident. In an accident law case, the injured person brings a lawsuit against the individual who or business that caused his or her harm. If the injured party wins the lawsuit, he or she can collect money for medical expenses, lost wages, property damage, pain and suffering, and other damages he or she sustains as a result of his or her injuries. For more information on accident law cases, check out our Common Questions Section.

Check out our next post for a discussion on how these three areas of law can work together in certain cases.