I'm unaware of the laws in Missouri. In California, Workers' Compensation is the exclusive remedy for pursuing a claim against your employer, with a few exceptions. One exception is if your employer did not maintain work comp insurance at the time of your injury, then you as the injured worker can sue him in Civil Court, as well as pursue a claim before the Workers' Compensation Appeals Board.
From the facts present, it appears that your employer's prior repeated notice of the leaks coupled with his failure to properly have the harmful condition removed, might in fact subject him to serious and willful misconduct.
Your best bet is to review your case with a reputable Workers' Compensation lawyer.
Please be advised that the advice provided does not create any attorney/client relationship; that due to the various state laws that the information provided is a general overview of work comp law, which might not be applicable to you, based upon the laws of your state. We will not file anything on your behalf nor protect any statute of limitations which might arise and recommend that you IMMEDIATELY consult legal counsel for advice.
You have a workers compensation claim. In most cases, workers compensation claims are driven not by liability, which is not usually an issue, but by the injuries and the extent of the employee's disability. My office handles workers compensation claims in Massachusetts and New Hampshire. And, although the basic theory is the same, workers compensation laws vary by state. Therefore, if you are in fact serious about your case, please retain a workers compensation attorney in your jurisdiction ASAP.
Injuries at work are handled primarily under workers compensation, where benefits are generally categorized as total disability or partial disability, and at times employees are eligible for lump sum settlement. Massachusetts and New Hampshire have fairly typical workers compensation statutes, but the differences illustrate that each state has its own procedural matrix and requirements for proper documentation. This is why anyone injured at work must have a workers compensation attorney to assist.
If you are injured your only recourse may be by filing a workers compensation claim. There might be an additional claim to be made depending on the facts of your case, but as a general rule the only recourse against the employer will be a workers compensation claim.
This response is intended to be a general statement of law that should not be relied upon as legal advice and does not create an attorney/client relationship.
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