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Animal Attacks on the Job and Workers’ Compensation

animal attacks on the job

When people think about workers’ compensation and the types of injuries or illnesses that precede filing a claim, they generally think of slip and fall accidents, automobile or heavy equipment accidents, or exposure to toxic or dangerous materials. But employees working in all types of industries are susceptible to an almost unlimited number of injury types, and a surprising number of workers’ compensation claims are filed as a result of animal attacks on the job as well as insect bites. These injuries can be very serious: in the United States there are roughly 800,000 dog bite injuries that require medical attention, and dozens of these have resulted in death. Workers who receive these types of injuries are in the unusual position of being able to file a workers’ compensation claim as well as to file a claim against the owner of the animal in question, or the property owner where the animal or insect injury occurred. If you have been hurt in this way, the experienced Lancaster law firm of Vanasse Law can help.

Animal attacks and insect bites can lead to injuries and illnesses of all types. Not only can the wounds themselves be serious and disfiguring, but they can also lead to additional complications such as infections or viruses. Workers who are bitten or scratched by a cat may come down with cat scratch fever, and bites of all types can become infected. Rabies and Rocky Mountain spotted fever is also a fear. Employees are also at risk of insect bites: being bitten by a tick can cause Lyme disease, being bitten by a mosquito can cause Zika or West Nile virus, and many insects such as bees, hornets and ants inject a toxic venom that can cause serious pain and illness in humans.

Injuries and illnesses such as those described above can happen to all types of workers. Those most at risk include:

  • Veterinary professionals – these workers come into direct contact with animals, as well as with the insects that may be afflicting them.
  • Home health care personnel – these workers often enter the homes of patients who own animals that may attack. They also can be exposed to insects in those homes
  • Delivery people – Like home health care personnel, these employees are often required to come into contact with animals in a customer’s home. They are also exposed to insects such as bees, hornets, and mosquitos.
  • Construction and maintenance workers – These workers frequently encounter insect nests and wild animals such as rats, squirrels, birds, raccoons and opossums.
  • Teachers – Classroom pets can quickly turn on teachers who are handling animals for the children they are educating. Classrooms can also be homes to stinging and biting insects, and teachers can also be stung when outside on playgrounds or on field trips.

If you suffer an animal attack injury or illness on the job, remember that your expenses can be covered by workers’ compensation. Call Vanasse Law today to learn more and get assistance in filing your claim.