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Third-party lawsuits and workers’ comp

Employees who are injured while working are entitled to file workers’ compensation claims through their employers’ insurance providers. While workers’ compensation offers several benefits, including coverage for medical expenses, a percentage of the income losses the employees have suffered and other related losses, it does not allow employees to recover compensation for their non-economic losses. Employees are also generally not allowed to file negligence lawsuits against their employers. However, there are certain situations when an injured employee might be able to file both a workers’ compensation claim with his or her employer and a third-party negligence claim against a third party who caused the injuries.

Third-party negligence claims for workplace injuries

In some cases, a work-related injury accident will be caused by the negligent actions of a third party. For example, if you drive as a part of your job and another motorist collides into your vehicle, you might be able to file a workers’ compensation claim with your employer’s workers’ comp insurance provider and a negligence lawsuit against the at-fault driver who caused your accident.

Construction site accidents are another common example. On construction sites, there might be multiple subcontracting companies with employees working on the same worksite. If an employee of one subcontractor causes an accident that injures an employee of another subcontractor, the injured employee might be able to file a personal injury lawsuit against the subcontractor whose employee negligently caused the accident. Other third parties might include the general contractor if they failed to maintain a safe workplace for everyone working there or a property owner who failed to correct hazards while you were working onsite for your employer.

Why file a third-party lawsuit?

Identifying other parties who might be liable in a workplace accident may help people to maximize their damages. Unlike workers’ compensation claims, third-party negligence lawsuits might allow people to recover compensation for their non-economic losses in addition to their economic losses. An experienced personal injury attorney may be able to review what happened and help determine liability to help a client maximize their recovery amounts.

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