FELA Lawsuits

FELA lawsuits are personal injury cases that seek compensation for railroad workers injured:

  • while working
  • as the result of an employer's, co-worker's and/or equipment manufacturer's negligence or recklessness

Officially known as the Federal Employers Liability Act, FELA was first enacted in 1908 when President Benjamin Harrison likened the dangers of working in the railroad industry to the dangers soldiers face when fighting a war.

As a specific type of workers' compensation law, FELA:

  • only applies to railroad employees
  • offers higher compensation awards than traditional workers' compensation due to the inherent dangers and risks associated with working in the railroad industry

When a railroad employee is injured, it's vital that he or she:

  • Seeks immediate medical attention to prevent further health complications.
  • Follow through with all long-term prescribed treatments to ensure optimal recovery.
  • Meet with an experienced FELA attorney to learn more about their legal rights. Consulting these accident lawyers before filing workers' compensation claims is crucial because the latter could preclude injured parties from recovering compensation via FELA settlements.

Bases for FELA Lawsuits: Railroad Accidents and Injuries

Railroad workers face a variety of potentially injurious situations on-the-job. Some of the most common types of accidents that occur in the railroad industry include:

  • collisions
  • crushing accidents
  • equipment or mechanical malfunction
  • falls (either falls from a height or falls resulting from slippery surfaces)
  • heavy lifting accidents

Following such accidents, railroad workers may experience injuries, such as:

  • burns
  • disfigurement
  • fractures
  • loss of limb
  • permanent disability
  • traumatic brain injury

FELA Lawsuit Settlements

Research shows that over 95 percent of FELA claims are resolved through mediation. However, regardless of whether a FELA claim goes to trial, injured railroad workers should have aggressive, professional representation to ensure that their legal rights are being adequately protected.

Prospective plaintiffs can find out if they are eligible to file a FELA claim by meeting with an experienced FELA attorney. During an initial consultation, injured parties can get expert advice regarding the best manner in which to pursue their case.

Those who choose to be represented by a FELA lawyer will benefit from:

  • access to a network of experts who can verify their medical claims when official testimony is needed
  • formidable representation in court, arbitration and/or mediation proceedings
  • delayed payment for legal services — FELA attorneys work on contingency, meaning they do not require payment until a settlement or court award is recovered

Ultimately, by following through with their case, injured railroad employees can recover compensation for:

  • outstanding hospital bills
  • future, ongoing treatments
  • lost wages, inability to work
  • permanent disabilities
  • future living expenses (should permanent disability prevent them from earning a living)
  • emotional pain and suffering

Have you or a loved one been injured while working in the railroad industry? If so, contact an experienced FELA attorney who will evaluate your case and help you recover the compensation you need and deserve.