July 17, 2014

What are my rights after being assaulted by a co-worker?

Work-place ViolenceUnfortunately assault between coworkers sometimes happens. Whether the attack be physical or sexual in nature, assault is wrong and the guilty party should be held responsible.

We should be able to feel safe and comfortable in our workplace. Experiencing harm in this setting can be especially damaging, causing a physical or emotional inability to work and continue earning a living. In some cases, you may be able to file a workers’ compensation claim in addition to tort claims. However, these laws vary by state.

In Pennsylvania, there are certain instances where claims against the employer could be allowed after assault by a co-worker. For example, if the employer has knowledge of previous assaults and did not react appropriately, he or she might be liable. However, if the assault is the result of a personal issue that does not involve the employment, the co-worker might be liable. Of course, you should have the case looked over by a knowledgeable attorney before taking any serious action.

If you have been the victim of workplace assault, don’t feel like there is nothing you can do. Your pain and suffering should not go unnoticed, and taking legal action may prevent the perpetrator from assaulting a future co-worker. Every case is different, so be sure to consult an assault lawyer for true legal advice.