A farm accident is one of the most common and deadly workplace accident. According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), more than 400 farmers and agricultural workers died due to job-related accidents and injuries in 2017 (the latest year for which data are available). Additionally, the National Ag Safety Database (NASD) estimates that nonfatal injuries affect approximately one-third of the farm population. Most alarming, the rate of agricultural fatalities and injuries is not declining at the same rate as the overall decline in the farm population.
Unfortunately, farm workers are among those excluded from North Dakota’s workers’ compensation system. This can make it exceedingly difficult for injured agricultural workers to recover for their medical bills, lost wages, and other losses after an accident or injury.
If you or someone you love was involved in a farming accident in North Dakota, contact Pringle & Herigstad, P.C. Since 1909, our attorneys have represented injured individuals and the families of those wrongfully killed in Minot, Grand Forks, Bottineau, and the surrounding areas, recovering favorable settlements and verdicts for thousands of clients. We understand the unique challenges farm workers face and are prepared to help you protect your rights.
Call (855) 245-5100 or contact us online to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.
Common Types of Farm Accidents
Farmers and farm workers face numerous risks on the job every day. Unfortunately, these hazards can—and frequently do—lead to serious accidents and injuries.
Some of the most common types of farm accidents include:
- Transportation accidents, such as tractor overturns
- Use of defective machinery, equipment, and tools
- Structure collapses
- Falls, including slip and falls and falls from heights
- Machine entanglement
- Struck-by and caught-between/crush accidents
- Entrapment in grain bins, silos, and other enclosed spaces
- Livestock accidents
- Overexertion and overuse
- Heat stroke/exhaustion
Sadly, these accidents often lead to life-altering injuries and fatalities. Those who survive find themselves not only facing immense medical treatment and care costs but are also often unable to return to work for weeks, months, or even years following the accident.
Compensation for Injured Agricultural Workers
In North Dakota, most employees are covered by workers’ compensation. However, agricultural workers are exempt. This means that you are likely not covered by workers’ compensation if you are injured in a farm accident or while carrying out any job-related activities as an agricultural worker. As such, you cannot recover workers’ compensation benefits for medical expenses, lost wages, and other losses.
So, what options do injured farm workers have?
If you can prove that another person or party was negligently or strictly liable, you could have grounds for a third-party work injury claim. These claims work just like standard personal injury cases, meaning you must prove that the defendant owed you a duty of care, breached the duty of care, and that you were injured and/or suffered damages because of the defendant’s breach of the duty of care. This same rule applies if you are injured on a farm as an employee, independent contractor, or even a guest or visitor.
Depending on the nature and specifics of your case, you could be entitled to compensation for the following damages:
- Emergency medical treatment
- Ongoing and future medical care
- Lost income/wages
- Lost earning ability (disability)
- Lost future earnings and other employment benefits
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional trauma and distress
- Miscellaneous expenses, such as in-home care costs, home modifications, and therapy
The exact types of damages you may be able to recover, as well as the potential value of your case, will depend on numerous factors. We advise you to contact our team at Pringle & Herigstad, P.C. to learn more about what you can expect during a no-cost, no-obligation consultation.
How Our Team Can Help You
At Pringle & Herigstad, P.C., our North Dakota farm accident attorneys are well-versed in the complex and nuanced nature of agricultural injury claims. Our team has successfully handled lawsuits on behalf of farmers, equipment operators, ranch workers, animal breeders, laborers, and other agricultural workers throughout the state. In every case, we strive to recover maximum compensation for our clients so that they can secure the financial resources they need to heal and move forward with their lives.
We have multiple offices located in Minot and Grand Forks and proudly serve clients throughout North Dakota. We do not charge any fees unless/until we recover a settlement or verdict on your behalf.
Get in touch with us today at (855) 245-5100 to request your free initial consultation.