Compensation: Assault in the Workplace

Victim of an assault at work, what are your rights?

Victim of an assault at work, you are entitled to compensation. Compensation procedures for victims of assault at work vary depending on the circumstances of the assault and who is responsible. Attacks can occur in the workplace or outside (for example, at a customer’s home), the attackers can be an employee, a customer or a third party outside the company. In all cases of assault that takes place at work, you will be dismissed if necessary. If you are attacked by a colleague or a third party from outside the company, you can file a complaint and the attacker will face a criminal sanction. The attacker will have to pay a fine if the temporary incapacity to work (ITT) is zero or less than eight days.

For temporary work incapacity of more than eight days, the penalty can be a fine of up to €45,000 and three years’ imprisonment, and €160,000 and ten years’ imprisonment if the violence has resulted in permanent dismemberment or disability.

In the event of a breach of its safety obligation, the employer may be ordered to pay you damages by the competent court. The employer’s safety obligation applies to moral harassment, sexual harassment and physical or moral violence. If the employer takes the necessary measures immediately after the attack at the workplace, he is fulfilling his safety obligation. If an employee is injured, the employer must first ensure that he or she sees a doctor for treatment or hospitalization and has his or her injuries recorded.

The assault is considered a workplace injury and the employer will discipline the perpetrator. When the damage to health is significant, a specialized lawyer will take charge of a compensation procedure for health damage caused by a crisis at work. He will call in an experienced doctor for compensation after consolidation when the attacker is insolvent.

Where the circumstances of the attack are not clearly established, he will also undertake a determination of the total or partial liability of the other party.

Victim of an assault at work, what is the procedure to follow?

Victims often ask us how to start compensation proceedings, whether to file a lawsuit or buy insurance. A competent lawyer will advise them on how to proceed. He will also advise him on how to finance the legal costs or how to obtain legal aid if he is in a difficult situation.

Victims of work-related accidents may be able to obtain Civi benefits to compensate for lost income and medical expenses, or even insurance, if necessary. The attorney and medical examiner will calculate the reserves on which compensation is due prior to final compensation.

A specialist lawyer selected to defend a case concerning an industrial accident will analyse the victim’s personal situation with a competent medical expert in order to obtain a detailed expert opinion.