Slip & Fall on the Job: Who's Responsible?
Updated: Sep 19
August 6, 2021
When you're an independent business owner and you get hurt on the job, who is ultimately responsible? Well, that depends if you're a sole proprietor, have an LLC or corporation. Most sole proprietors don't carry Workers Constipation insurance, and some don't even have a basic liability insurance policy.
In such cases, the waters are muddied when it comes to pinpointing liability. Who's responsible? The worker, the property owner, or the defecator? Despite what some attorneys may tell you, the answer may not be so brown and yellow.
"It depends on how the contract was written and if there was a monetary exchange that may link the property owner to the service provider, such as a check or credit card," said Attorney Brown who recently passed a bar. "If the homeowner paid cash, the hired worker is up _____ creek without a paddle." Brown also explained: "Another consideration is if the canine had malicious intent as to where it deposited the payload, such as a pathway or major traffic area on the lawn. Lastly, we never rule out fraud, as a worker may use their livelihood as a means of self-inflicted injury." In such cases, the courts avoid ruling in any particular way as to not set a legal precedence. "The last thing we want is to do is trigger a movement," said 35-year activist E.L. Fudge.
Before seeking legal advice, a worker may want to consider an alternate line of work rather than to continue down a path of risk in order to earn their bread and butter. Politics perhaps, which is less physical. "It requires picking up a greater amount of excrement," says Josh Hastings, a Councilman in Wicomico County, Maryland. "The amount of it depends on whether you run for a District or At Large." Hasting's opposition, Councilman Joe Holloway strongly disagrees with Hastings by saying "we don't use that word around here."
If politics opens an alternate gate of opportunity in lieu of litigation, one may consider such a position - especially if it's related to the original line of work as it all comes down to experience. "Politics can be dirty. The last thing you want is to fall victim to a smear campaign," says Maryland Delegate Carl Anderton. "From DAF tanks to septic systems, we have to roll up our sleeves and deal with real issues in the county, even though it's not always pleasant. The last thing we want is for our work to pile up."
After sustaining an injury on the job, regardless if one remains in their line of work, finds an alternative job, or becomes a politician, they have to scoop up the best opportunity that comes along.
Colin O. Scoopy
Satirical Reporter, Delmarva Times