The railroads like Amtrak, CSX and Norfolk Southern have whole teams of lawyers and claims agents who do nothing but fight against injured railroad workers who get hurt on the job.
It’s essentially like an in-house insurance company except the railroads have so much money that they don’t even have to use regular insurance like a normal company. The railroad’s claims agent is essentially the same as the claims representative who is working for Allstate, State Farm or Nationwide trying to pay someone in a car accident as little as they can get away with paying.
However, the railroad claims agent has much more power to invade the privacy of and control the injured railroad worker. In a car accident case, you have no relationship normally with the other side and their insurance company.
It’s just somebody who happened to drive recklessly and cause an accident. In the FELA injured railroad worker context, the claims agent is a fellow employee of your same employer.
They have access to all of your personnel records and the records of the medical department of the railroad to investigate you and your claim. The railroad claims agent controls everything from the moment that you get hurt through when the case is resolved by settlement or a jury verdict.
The railroad’s claims agent is able to coordinate with the injured railroad worker’s supervisor to force them to give statements and fill out accident reports.
The railroad’s claims agent will try to intervene in your medical treatment by saying they’ll pay the bills but only if they are allowed to send their nurse consultant/spy into the doctor’s office with you while you’re being treated. The railroad claims agent is all the while reporting back to the railroad’s FELA lawyers who are trying to manage your case in a way that they can pay you as little money as possible.
If you or a loved one has been hurt on the job on Norfolk Southern (NS), CSXT, or Amtrak you need to hire an experienced FELA attorney as soon as possible to balance the power. The claims agent is not your friend. They are hired to do a job which they’re quite good at which is to try to get away with reducing the damage for the railroad in dealing with your injury. Make sure you know who is looking out for your best interest and who isn’t.
The Norfolk, Virginia Beach and Hampton railroad injury/FELA law firm, Cooper Hurley, handles railroad worker’s injuries and injuries on rail crossings in Virginia, North Carolina and West Virginia, as well as automobile, truck, and motorcycle injuries and slip and fall cases, wrongful death and medical malpractice. John Cooper and Jim Hurley have over 40 years of combined experience in handling serious injury claims. Attorney John Cooper has been named to Virginia “Super Lawyers” since 2010.
Cooper Hurley represents families who have lost a loved one through another party’s fault in Virginia Beach, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Suffolk, Chesapeake, Hampton, Newport News and throughout VA, and northeastern North Carolina. We always put the best interests of our clients first. The firm is recognized by other lawyers as “AV” by Martindale-Hubbell, a national attorney rating service, for our top level of legal skill and highest ethical standards. If you need help or advice about a serious injury, please call us or contact us through this website.