Since 1969, our law firm has handled thousands of railroad injury claims arising under the Federal Employers’ Liability Act, 45 U.S.C. § 51, et seq. (FELA). We are intimately familiar with the inner workings of every major and nearly every short-line railroad in the United States. The FELA is a specialized statute that governs workplace injuries to railroad employees. Importantly, railroad employees are not covered by any state’s workers compensation statute. Railroad employees need representation like that provided by our law firm in order to protect, prosecute and obtain full justice and compensation for their injuries.
A Historically Dangerous Industry
A Railroad occupation, historically and as it remains today, is one of the most dangerous jobs in the United States. In 1888, the odds against a railroad brakeman’s dying a natural death were almost four to one; the average life expectancy of a switchman in 1893 was seven years. In addressing the plight of railroad workers in the United States, President Benjamin Harrison urged Congress to pass legislation to improve railroad safety. He explained: “It is a reproach to our civilization that any class of American workman should, in the pursuit of a necessary and useful vocation, be subjected to a peril of life and limb as great as that of a soldier in time of war.”
The Federal Employers’ Liability Act
In 1908, upon realizing the importance of railroads bearing the costs of causing injuries to its employees, Congress enacted the FELA. The Act’s purpose was to stimulate carriers to greater diligence for the safety of their employees and the persons and property of their patrons.
While the FELA has indeed forced railroad carriers to become safer and be held accountable to employees for the injuries it caused, the railroad industry is one that is not without significant safety risk. The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) reported that in 2003, there were more than 13,877 railroad accidents in the United States in which 858 people lost their lives. Tragically, due to the sheer size and weight on the equipment invovled railroad accidents often have catastrophic results in the form of severe personal injury or death suffered by workers or those close to the tracks.
For nearly fifty (50) years, our law firm has earned a reputation as one of the premier personal injury, FELA railroad accident and appellate law firms in Chicago and throughout the Midwest. Our attorneys have over 175 years of combined legal experience and have argued cases in front of state and federal courts in Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, and many other jurisdictions nationwide at both the trial and appellate levels. Our reputation in the legal community has earned our attorneys Martindale‑Hubbell’s prestigious “AV” rating, the highest rating available to a law firm, indicating preeminent legal ability and the highest ethical standards. We set ourselves apart from other firms with our unwavering commitment to personal attention, communicating directly with each of our clients throughout his or her case.
Few law firms in the Midwest offer the same level of legal expertise and client commitment as ours. We are passionate about what we do, and most of our attorneys have dedicated their entire careers to helping the injured. If you or a loved one has suffered an injury, it is critical that you are represented by attorneys with the experience and dedication to ensure you receive the maximum recovery to which you are entitled.
If you believe you have been injured on duty at the railroad, you should take action quickly and contact us online or call us at 800-828-5828 to set up a free consultation with an experienced lawyer.