South Dakota FELA Lawyers
SIOUX FALLS • RAPID CITY • ABERDEEN • WATERTOWN • BROOKINGS • MITCHELL
Are you a railroad worker who has suffered an on-the-job injury? The Federal Employers' Liability Act (FELA) establishes the procedures for injured workers to recover compensation. Due to the complexities of these procedures, injured workers are best served by working with an attorney who understands the nuances of FELA — to seek maximum compensation on the injured's behalf.
The attorneys of Gordon, Elias & Seely, L.L.P. have more than 51 years of experience fighting for the rights of injured railroad workers throughout South Dakota. We help people who have suffered a range of injuries at work, from head injuries to lost limbs and now, due to an “Of Counsel” relationship with two very fine attorneys, we will even accept cumulative and Repetitive trauma FELA claims. To speak to a FELA claims attorney that can help a South Dakota based FELA worker in a free consultation, call us toll free at 800-773-6770 or contact us online.
Gordon, Elias & Seely, L.L.P. also represents FELA claimants for repetitive or cumulative trauma claims. For an in-depth discussion of the different types of cumulative claims please visit:
FELA was enacted to establish the authority of injured workers to recover compensation for a range of injuries caused by railroad employer negligence. It was very apparent to the government that railroad employees faced risks and dangers in this particular line of work. Congress addressed the problem of railroad worker injury claims by allowing them to file FELA claims for damages in either state or federal court.
FELA also makes it easier to prove the railroad's liability, reducing the burden of proof for ordinary negligence and, in some cases, actually waiving the need to prove negligence if the railroad violated a safety statute or regulation.
At Gordon, Elias & Seely, L.L.P., we can help you in every aspect of your FELA claim, from explaining the FELA claims process to explaining what compensation is available in regards to the type of injury sustained. A recent trend in FELA law is to prove that that the wear and tear that has occurred over years of work to various body parts of a railroad worker [depending upon their craft] should have been modified so that the work could have been performed in a less traumatic method to the human body. The railroads knew that these injuries, classified as cumulative or repetitive FELA injury claims, were occurring in their workforce but completely failed to correct the situation or, in most cases, even warn about them. These claims are compensable under FELA and Gordon, Elias & Seely, L.L.P. has gone to great lengths to position itself to help you receive just and fair compensation for these injuries
We limit our caseload so we can focus fully on providing great customer service. When you choose us to represent you in your railroad accident case, you will work directly with an attorney — not an associate or paralegal.
We know firsthand how dangerous the railroad industry is. Railroad workers face dangers and risks every day on the job. We are focused on helping people just like you recover after an accident. If you have been injured on the job, contact Gordon, Elias & Seely, L.L.P. for a free consultation about how we handle FELA claims.
The following is a list of all the railroads operating in South Dakota and covered under FELA:
BNSF Railway (BNSF), Canadian Pacific Railway (CP) through subsidiaries Dakota, Minnesota and Eastern Railroad (DME) and Soo Line Railroad (SOO), D&I Railroad (DAIR), Dakota, Missouri Valley and Western Railroad (DMVW), Dakota Southern Railway (DSRC), Ellis and Eastern Company (EE), Sisseton Milbank Railroad (SMRR), Sunflour Railroad (SNR), Twin Cities and Western Railroad (TCWR)
The above railroads range from Class I through Class III railroads and some are very small short line railroad companies. Nevertheless, anyone injured while working for these railroads would have a FELA claim and should report their claim and seek legal advice.
Freight railroads are classified by the Federal Rail Administration (FRA) based on annual operating revenues as follows:
Class I – annual revenues greater than $258.5 million;
Class II- annual revenues between $40 million and $258.5 million; and
Class III- annual revenues under $40 million.
These railroads are deemed as passenger railroads in the state of South Dakota: Black Hills Central Railroad
PIERRE • YANKTON • HURON• VERMILLION • SPEARFISH • BRANDON • MADISON • STURGIS • BELLEFOURCHE
51 Years of Combined Experience Representing Injured Railroad Workers
Designated Legal Counsel (DLC) and non-DLC FELA Lawyers Practice the Same FELA Law
In most instances, the injured railworker is a member of a union. Unions such as the Brotherhood of Maintenance of Way (BMWE), the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers (BLE), both of which are under the Brotherhood of International Teamsters (BIT), have large numbers of workers in the rail industry. Other Unions include:
- American Train Dispatchers Department Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers ATDA
- Brotherhood of Railway Signalmen BRS
- International Brotherhood of Boilermakers, Iron Ship Builders, Blacksmiths, Forgers and Helpers IBB
- International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers IBEW
- National Conference of Firemen and Oilers of SEIU IBF&O
- Sheet Metal Workers' International Association SMWIA
- Transportation Communication Union-Clerks TCU-BRAC
- Transportation Communication Union-Carman TCU-BRC
- United Transportation Union UTU
Whatever your Union, more than likely they will have a designated union counsel. These DLC firms practice FELA law. There are many other law firms that do not have Union designation and they also practice FELA law. In every instance when you are injured, a claims agent will try to immediately take a statement from you. You should definitely speak to a FELA Lawyer, DLC or Non-DLC, before you give a statement to a claims agent. As to choosing a DLC or a non-DLC, you should choose the lawyer that you feel comfortable with and you should not be "pushed" to hire any lawyer. A FELA Lawyer can help you pursue a claim for railroad workers' compensation, i.e., FELA, if you have been injured.