third party workplace injury

What Happens When a Third Party is Responsible for My Workplace Injury?

Workplace issues may be the result of unsafe equipment, an injured employee’s error, a coworker’s mistake, or even a bad judgment call by management. In most cases, injured employees are only entitled to workers’ compensation. But when someone outside the company is responsible for your injuries, you may also be able to seek compensation from the at-fault party.

There are numerous factors determining whether or not you can pursue compensation from a third party after a workplace injury. That’s why it’s so important to discuss your case with a workers’ compensation lawyer in Mobile. Set up your consultation now by calling Thiry & Caddell at 251-336-3627.


The Limits of Workers’ Compensation

Workers’ compensation is an excellent system in many ways. It protects employers from personal injury claims, allows injured workers to receive partial income replacement, and ensures that injured employees receive prompt medical care. Unfortunately, it also has quite a few limitations.


Workers’ compensation is available to an employee as soon as they are injured since the injured party does not need to prove that anyone else was at fault for the accident that injured them. In exchange for essentially guaranteed benefits, employees give up pain and suffering benefits and full income replacement. Alabama allows injured workers who cannot return to work up to two-thirds of their average weekly wage. This may not be enough for employees who truly need every dollar they earn to get by.


Additionally, there may be limits on medical care. An injured employee must go to the employer’s chosen primary care provider, and any further referrals must be approved of by the employer or their workers’ comp insurance carrier.


A third-party claim is a personal injury claim. It allows injured workers to recoup full lost wages, pain and suffering, and other expenses not covered by workers’ compensation. This is not an option for all injured employees—your injury must be the result of a third party’s negligence.


Third Parties Often Involved in Workplace Accident Claims

There are many different ways that a third party may be responsible for an employee’s injuries. Possible liable parties include:


  • Manufacturers: If an accident is caused by unsafe equipment, the manufacturer may be to blame. This isn’t the case every time that equipment malfunctions, but it may be if the error should have been caught by the manufacturer prior to sending out the equipment.
  • Property owners: If your place of work is not owned by your employer, this is a possibility. For example, a fall through unmaintained stairs could be the property owner’s fault. In this scenario, you would pursue compensation through the homeowner’s or business policy.
  • Subcontractors: When companies bring in subcontractors for specialized work, they are not considered employees. When they’re negligent, they can be held accountable for the injuries they caused. This often happens on construction sites when companies bring in subcontractors for specific tasks.
  • Drivers: If you drive for work or you work near the roadway, a reckless driver could cause you serious injury. This is often seen on roadway construction. If a distracted driver hits a construction worker, the construction worker may then go after the driver for compensation. If you are required to drive for work, you can seek compensation for an accident caused by a negligent driver.


Pursuing a Third-Party Claim

It’s highly recommended that you work with a Spanish Fort workers’ compensation lawyer if you think you have a valid third-party claim. These claims can be somewhat complicated, since you may receive workers’ compensation benefits prior to starting your personal injury claim. If your personal injury claim is successful, you may need to repay workers’ comp before receiving the rest of your settlement or jury award. An attorney can look into the details of your claim and help you decide your next steps.


Explore Your Legal Options with Thiry & Caddell

Have you been injured at work? If so, do not give up the compensation you deserve. Whether you pursue workers’ compensation or have a valid third-party claim, the Mobile, AL team at Thiry & Caddell is ready to help you. Fill out our online contact form or call us at 251-336-3627 to set up a consultation with our team now.

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