What are my rightts if I was assaulted at work?

While at my place of employment I was assaulted by one of the owners’ sons. It is a bar and he did have alcohol in his system. Initially he threatened to sever my hand, then my head, and when confronted about this he placed his hands on me, threw me against a wall, and connected with 2 hits to my face before the bartender broke it up. At no point did I verbally or physically assault him and this was totally unprovoked. He has access to the camera system to erase evidence unfortunately. I do not feel comfortable returning to work there.

Asked on July 8, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, Pennsylvania


Andrew Goldberg

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Initially, you can file a complaint ( asking for criminal charges ) with the local police. If the police refuse, you can file a private criminal complaint with the local District Court. I the "son" is not an employee of the Bar, you can file a lawsuit against the "son" for your injuries and resulting pain and suffering. Per the Pa. Workers Comp. Act, you cannot sue the Bar as the Bar is your employer. Rather, you are entitled to Workers Comp. medical and wage benefits. If the "son" is an emolyee of the Bar, you can only get workers comp. benefits if the assault was related to work and not personal ( ex., you flirted with his girlfriend). If the assault was unrelated to work, you then may be able to successfully file a lawsuit against the "son"  ( only ) for your injuries and resulting pain and suffering. This is still difficult. Typically, homeowners insurance does not cover intentional criminal acts or assaults. You need to see a lawyer as there are alot of issues/questions here.

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