If your employer uses workers’ compensation, you will most likely not be able to file a lawsuit against them for injuries sustained during a work accident. Your employer’s actions would have to be intentional. However, there are cases where you can file a lawsuit against third parties who are responsible for causing your injuries. These are called third party claims.
Third parties can include the manufacturers of equipment or people not employed by the company you work for.
What Do Third Party Claim Cases Look Like?
Sam has spent the last seven years working for a Southern Louisiana pipe supply company. Most days are spent in the warehouse moving equipment and taking inventory, but Sam is sometimes required to make deliveries to nearby clients. On one of these trips to deliver inventory, Sam is hit by a drunk driver. He wakes up one day later in the hospital with a broken leg and brain injury. What legal options are available to help Sam recover?
Although the accident occurred while Sam was on the clock, he may still be able to file a claim against the drunk driver for causing his injuries. Sam discusses options with his family and they decide to contact a local personal injury attorney, who advises suing the drunk driver.
So You Have a Thirty Party Claim, Should You Still File for Workers’ Comp?
Sam should still file a workers’ compensation claim to receive money for his medical bills and lost wages while his personal injury lawsuit against the drunk driver is underway. If his personal injury lawsuit is successful and Sam is awarded damages, he will be required to pay back what he received in workers’ compensation benefits. However, this amount could be small in comparison to the amount in damages.
Depending on the circumstances of an accident, injured workers may have legal options outside of the workers’ compensation system.
The Louisiana personal injury attorneys at Galloway Jefcoat, LLP, can help injured workers and their families find options for handling work injury claims.