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What is Considered Willful Misconduct in a Workers’ Compensation Case?

On Behalf of | Jun 7, 2019 | Workers' Comp |

Work injuries can happen for a number of different reasons: Defective equipment, third-party negligence, and car accidents are just some examples of how an employee can be injured on the job. While there are multiple factors that can contribute to a work accident, and therefore many different parties that could be liable for an employee’s injuries, cases of “serious and willful misconduct” attribute fault, often exclusively, to the employer.

“Serious and willful misconduct” defines incidents in which an employer acted in a way they knew would cause harm, and their actions resulted in an on-the-job injury. Whereas cases of gross negligence involve carelessness and the possibility of causing injury, actions that can be defined as willful misconduct are in direct violation of legal safety measures. Workers who can prove that their employer’s serious and willful misconduct caused their occupational injuries could be eligible for a 50% increase in their workers’ compensation benefits.

Examples of Serious and Willful Misconduct

Every workers’ compensation case varies. The only way to determine if the actions of your employer can be considered as an instance of serious and willful misconduct is with the help of an experienced lawyer — contact us for a free analysis of the details of your case.

There are some examples of employer behavior that can almost always be considered as willful misconduct. This may include:

  • Direct violations of industry safety standards, such as OSHA regulations
  • Providing inadequate, defective, or otherwise unsafe equipment
  • Failing to assist an injured employee

This list is just a few examples of serious and willful misconduct. Many employer actions could be considered as such, and qualify an injured employee for additional benefits. Our experienced lawyers can evaluate your case and determine what you are entitled to.

At the Law Offices of Andrew B. Shin, our attorneys are committed to getting our clients the maximum compensation they deserve. Schedule a free consultation on our website or via phone at 408-341-6025 if you have a workers’ compensation claim.