FELA Workplace Injury Information

Federal Employers Liability Act (FELA)

Filing a Claim? Contact District Lodge 19 Immediately    

The Federal Employers Liability Act (FELA) is a law enacted by Congress in 1908 to protect railroad workers who are disabled or injured while on the job.  FELA provides injured workers and their families with fair and livable compensation for injuries once negligence is established on the part of the railroad. The railroad must have failed to provide a reasonably safe place to work for machinists to receive compensation.

FELA provides more remedies than traditional workers’ compensation benefits.  Under FELA, an injured railroad worker can recover all of the damages associated with a lawsuit, including lost wages and benefits, medical expenses, pain and suffering, and loss of enjoyment of life.

If you have been injured on the job, there are important steps to take after an injury to protect your rights ensure how effective your claim will be along with the types of damages you could be entitled to.  Timing is essential in making sure that one’s rights and claim is protected. Often statements given to trained claims representatives working for the Carriers can unknowingly diminish or extinguish an employee’s claim.  All we ask for our members is that a level playing field is the norm, by giving access and free advice to all members.  In many cases, further need for legal help may not be necessary.  By immediately reporting to your servicing General Chairman an incident resulting in injury, we will be able promptly advise the member of their options and if necessary give additional contact information for legal counsel who will be able to render assistance to our brother or sister in need.

Here is an important checklist to help you start your claim:

  • Obtain the very best medical care that you can.
  • Be sure the accident was reported to the railroad and to the Union.
  • Do not give statements before medical care is provided if needed
  • Do not give statements or fill out injury reports if medical care included medications that may impair your ability.
  • Always keep copies of all statements and injury reports
  • Contact your General Chairman as soon as possible.
  • If possible do not give a written or recorded statement to a claim agent or anyone else until you have the opportunity to discuss the matter with servicing General Chairman and if needed your attorney.
  • Record on paper and photograph if possible all details of the accident or injury.
  • Write down the names, addresses and phone numbers of anyone who witnessed the accident.