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Can You Get Compensation For Emotional Distress With Workers’ Compensation?


Mostly, you can not sue your employer when filing a workers’ compensation claim. Also, it is difficult to sue the insurance company as the law does not allow it. But that is fine because it gives you the advantage of not proving that your employer was at fault to win your case. 

However, this also means that you cannot file for pain and emotional distress under workers’ compensation. Therefore, if you want to file for pain and suffering, consult an on the job injury attorney to file a personal injury claim and prove that your employer was at fault. 

Can you get compensation for emotional distress with workers’ compensation?

Emotional distress and mental suffering are non-economic parts of personal injury claims in workers’ compensation claims. For example, you suffered a slip and fall injury, your medical treatment cost you $15,000, and you are out of work for two months. You can claim $15,000 of medical expenses, the wages you lost due to your inability to go to work, and other additional expenses through a personal injury claim.

Well, it is not possible to get compensated for emotional distress with workers’ compensation, but you can still recover compensation for emotional pain in some cases. To be able to file for emotional distress, you have to file a claim outside of workers’ compensation benefits.

  • If you are not covered under workers’ compensation benefits

If you are not covered under workers’ compensation benefits (because you are a business owner or independent contractor instead of an employee) or if your employer is not required to provide the coverage, you can sue your employer for the injury.

  • You can file through a third-party claim.

Various third-party individuals like contractors, subcontractors, or property owners can be liable for your injuries. If you file a third-party claim against someone other than your employer, you are entitled to receive compensation for all losses related to your injury. It also includes compensation for emotional distress.

  • The employer is not complying with the law.

Most states require employers to provide workers’ compensation benefits, but not all companies comply. If you think your company is not complying with the law, it is not entitled to “no-fault” law protections, and you can sue the company or employer for emotional distress. 

If you file a third-party claim and qualify for workers’ compensation, your lawyer will help you file both claims. In this way, you can work on your workers’ compensation claim while your injury claim is pending.


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