FELA Railroad Accident Lawyer

Inherent dangers of the railroad industry place the workers in this field at great risk for personal injury or wrongful death. Similar to the dangers posed by the construction field, railroad workers endure some of the most hazardous conditions in the country. Due to the increasingly large number of workers sustaining injury in this line of work, Congress introduced the Federal Employers Liability Act (FELA) of 1907 in order to protect these workers. This piece of legislation holds the employers of railroad workers liable for any injuries that their working conditions may cause due to negligence.

Not all law offices are equipped with the knowledge and resources needed to handle these high profile cases; this is precisely why you will need the help of our expert Alabama FELA railroad accident lawyers. The top injury lawyers here at the law office of Wettermark & Keith, LLC., have over three decades of litigation experience fighting for the rights of injured railroad workers. We won’t back down until justice is found for those injured or killed in these tragic accidents.

Your Rights as a Victim

Under the Federal Employers Liability Act, railroad workers who sustain an injury on the job may be eligible for compensation beyond what a typical Workers’ Compensation claim may pay out. The specific nature of the incident in question needs to be properly evaluated in order to determine if a victim has rights under FELA to have a claim. Our professional FELA railroad injury lawyers can help you with this aspect of your case. If your employer is found to be responsible for your injury, you or your family may be entitled to compensation for:

  • Lost Wages
  • Loss of Benefits
  • Disability Pay
  • Scarring
  • Emotional Pain and Suffering
  • Medical Expenses
  • Funeral Costs
  • Loss of Quality of Life

The compensation provided to injured workers by Workers’ Compensation is all too often not enough to meet the needs of a victim and their families. Contact our law office today to discuss the specifics of your case.

You Have Rights – Keep Your Job and Get Well by Using the Family Medical Leave Act

Using the FMLA to Protect Your Job : The FMLA was passed by Congress to help employees balance their work and family responsibilities by allowing them to take reasonable unpaid leave for certain family and medical reasons.

Eligible employees are entitled to take unpaid leave for any of the following reasons:

  • The birth in care of the newborn child of an employee;
  • Placement with the employee of a child for adoption or foster care;
  • To take care of an immediate family member (spouse, child, parent) with a serious health condition;
  • To take medical leave when the employee is unable to work because of a serious health condition.

Many medical conditions qualify as “serious” under the FMLA. Some of these conditions are obvious, such as cancerstroke, or diabetes. As a general rule, everyday illnesses such as the flu are not considered serious medical conditions under the FMLA. However, there is one important exception. That exception can be a railroad worker’s best friend.

Important exception:  Under the FMLA, a condition, like the flu, that incapacitates you or your family member for more than three consecutive days and requires ongoing medical treatment (either multiple appointments with the health care provider, or a single appointment and follow-up care such as prescription medication) is considered a “serious medical condition.” If you meet these criteria, you are eligible for FMLA leave.

For example:  Let’s take a look at how this provision applies to a real-life scenario. Because of events beyond his control, a railroad conductor is on the verge of violating the railroad’s attendance policy. One more absence will put him over the top. And then, disaster strikes. He wakes up one morning sick as a dog. He is throwing up. He has a fever. There is no way he can work. Yet, if he simply calls and marks off sick, he is going to be in violation of the attendance policy. At the same time, however, if he plays his cards right, he can be eligible for FMLA leave.

When You Get Sick, Consider Following these Steps to Use the Exception

  1. Go see a doctor If a family doctor is unavailable, go to an Urgent Care Center.
  2. Make sure that the doctor prescribes a prescription medication.
  3. Make sure the doctor requires you to be off of work for at least four consecutive days.

Finally, call the railroad and explained that you have a serious illness and that your doctor has ordered you to be off work for at least four consecutive days. Request FMLA leave. BOOM! You are protected. The railroad cannot assess discipline as a result of this absence from work. If it does, it will be in violation of the FMLA.

Ironically, the steps you need to take in this circumstance are counter-intuitive. Typically, in circumstances such as this, an employee would think the best thing to do would be to get back to work as soon as possible. This, of course, is not the right step. In order to make the flu a “serious medical condition,” you have to be off at least four consecutive days, see a doctor, and receive medical treatment (prescription medication does the trick).

One important warning: As with all things legal, oftentimes little things make a big difference. So, if you find yourself in a position where you think you need to take advantage of the provisions of the FMLA, call your legal counsel. We can provide you advice up front that may save you a lot of headaches on the back end. Please consult the United States Department of Labor’s “Employee’s Guide to the Family and Medical Leave Act” handbook.

Serving Justice — One Case at a Time

Here at Wettermark & Keith, LLC., our veteran FELA railroad accident lawyers have the skills needed to take on these large entities. Our top attorneys represent each and every client with the utmost respect, compassion, and employ the thorough legal expertise needed to make their case a success. We realize that this is likely a difficulty situation for you and possibly your family and are here for you.

If you have been injured or lost a loved one due to the negligence of another person in a railroad accident, contact our seasoned injury lawyers today. Together we can seek a financial compensation figure that meets your needs as a victim and can continue to provide for your, long after this ordeal is over.

No Recovery, No Fee Guarantee

When selecting clients to represent in court, our firm operates on a contingency fee basis. What this means to our clients is simple: if we don’t win your case, you won’t pay anything. We choose to operate this way for the sole benefit of our clients, we want to see you obtain a successful recovery so that you can continue to carry on with your life.

Contact us today if you have been the victim of a personal injury or lost a loved one to a wrongful death after a railroad accident. Fill out the free case evaluation form on our web site and we will get back to you promptly. If you wish to speak to us directly, feel free to call one of our three branches.

  • Birmingham Office       205.933.9500
  • Chattanooga Office     423.342.2600
  • Huntsville Office       256.536.8010
  • Montgomery Office       334.284.0014

Remember, it is only through extensive professional litigation that a successful claim of personal injury or wrongful death can be made to come to fruition. This is precisely how our top accident lawyers operate for every client, every day. We work hard to serve justice to those injured, one case at a time.

We serve Birmingham, Huntsville, Montgomery & all of Alabama. Call or contact us today, we are here to help.