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FELA Case Lawyer

Railroad Injury Lawsuit

Railroad worker claims are governed by the Federal Employees Liability Act of 1908.  A FELA case lawyer represents an injured railroad worker filing a claim under FELA legislation. Matthews & Associates is investigating FELA rail yard worker claims. 

Federal Employers’ Liability Act

Railroad workers injured on the job are covered by certain rights granted by the Federal Employers’ Liability Act. FELA became law in 1908 as a result of public outrage over devastating injuries and the deaths of men working the rails.

The United States Supreme Court once noted these appalling statistics: “In 1888 the odds against a railroad brakeman dying a natural death were almost four to one; the average life expectancy of a switchman in 1893 was seven years.”

Related: Five Things All Railroad Workers Should Know

Talk to a FELA Case Lawyer today for a potential railroad injury lawsuit. Call today at (888) 923-7001 or email us for a free legal consultation.

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  • “I Love these guys!!!! They are SO Helpful, Kind, Knowledgeable,”
    I Love these guys!!!! They are SO Helpful, Kind, Knowledgeable, Smart, good with people, answer ALL ur questions, if they don't know the answer, it sure doesn't take them long to get you the answer!!!!!!!!!! I wouldn't want anyone else to handle my suit. They are AWESOME!!!!!!!!!
    - Genie S.
  • “Very professional from the beginning”

    Very professional from the beginning. always answered questions and had amazing follow through on insuring data submitted was accurate

    - Jeffrey E.
  • “I am impressed that the Firm is always available and answers questions promptly”

    I've been working with Matthews and Associates for 2 years. I am impressed that the Firm is always available and answers questions promptly. I am very satisfied with the services they provide and would recommend them.

    - Kweli Y.
  • “Very informative and professional.”

    Very informative and professional. Answer thoroughly all my questions and concerns.

    - Lydia C.
  • “Matthews and Associates are very informative. Kept me up to date on what was happening with my case.”

    Matthews and Associates are very informative. Kept me up to date on what was happening with my case. They were always polite when they were talking to me. Very professional and polite.

    - Ron S.
  • “They treat you with respect. They support you when needed.”

    Matthews and Associates is one of a kind. They treat you with respect. They support you when needed. Plus they have locations in Texas and California with wonderful customer service. Billingual service always available.

    - Sorangel T.

Railroad Workers SOL Before FELA

Before FELA was made law, railroad workers and/or their families rarely received compensation for injuries or deaths. Prior to FELA, when an injured worker tried to recover damages for railroad negligence, the law protected the railroad at the expense of the worker.  Any injured worker ruled to be contributorily negligent was denied all recovery, even if the railroad was 99 percent at fault, and the worker only one percent.

The laws were cruelly stacked against all workers. If one worker caused an accident that hurt another, the injured could not recover compensation due to a defense known as “The Fellow Servant Doctrine.”  Sadly, even if a railroad company were grossly negligent, it could routinely escape liability by arguing the injured party “assumed the risk” of employment.

FELA Brings Fairness to Injured Railway Workers

FELA abolished defenses like The Fellow Servant Doctrine and “assumed risk.” Congress established FELA so that railway workers could sue for damages suffered as a result of their employer’s negligence, in either state or Federal court. FELA eliminated harsh contributory negligence rules, replacing them with a comparative fault system.

Today, if a railroad coworker is partly to blame for an accident, damages are reduced by that worker’s negligence. Now, if a worker loses wages as well as pain and suffering of, say, $400,000 and is ruled to be 25% responsible, his recovery would be $300,000, with the railroad paying 75% of the total. If the railroad caused an accident by violating a Federal railroad safety statute such as The Federal Safety Appliance Act or Federal Boiler Inspection Act, it would become strictly liable for all resulting injuries. This is a sea change from pre-1908 days.

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  • David P. Matthews Photo
    David P. Matthews Attorney
    "When the judge read the verdict in Martha Salazar’s case ($73 Million), and we learned the jury ordered [the medical device maker] to pay Martha, (we) knew they believed every word she said.  We realized they knew the defendant was truly guilty."
    Assistant Editor
INDIVIDUAL CASES, INDIVIDUAL ATTENTION

We may file or settle a claim individually or as part of a group on a case-by-case basis. 

Whether your claim is filed individually or as part of a group fighting the same defendant, our goal is always to provide each of our clients with individual attention.

FELA vs. Worker’s Compensation

Permanent, total disability injuries that fall under state workers’ compensation programs can result in a life of poverty for injured workers and their families. In six states, in fact, the maximum permanent total disability benefits allowed under workers’ compensation fall woefully below the poverty level for a family of four. Workers’ compensation benefits are often fixed, arbitrary, and grossly shy of fully compensating workers for their injuries. FELA, by contrast, was intended to provide fair and livable compensation for injured workers and their families.

FELA Claim Lawyer

FELA cases don’t all go to trial, but if a FELA case does go to trial, FELA grants every railroad worker rights to sue in state or federal court. The injured worker controls the major decision-making in each case handled by a FELA claim lawyer. An injured worker can decide to accept a railroad settlement offer, make a different proposal, or proceed to a trial.

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  • Super Lawyers David

Free Legal Consultation

Call today at (888) 923-7001 or email Matthews & Associates for a free legal consultation if you or someone you love was injured on a railroad job.

RELATED:

  • Firm Roots

    David P. Matthews founded our firm after 16 years as a partner at a prominent Houston law firm.

  • Experience
    We have longstanding experience of representing injured people in serious auto and truck accident claims, workplace injuries, aviation accident claims, dialysis injury claims, and a broad array of medical device claims, from transvaginal mesh to hip replacement surgery injury claims.
  • Nationwide Representation
    In dangerous pharmaceutical drug casesmedical device cases, and several others including FELA lawsuits, and many more, we also represent clients on a nationwide basis.

Nationwide Legal Representation

INDIVIDUAL CASES, INDIVIDUAL ATTENTION
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