In exchange for workers’ compensation, injured workers generally do not have the right to sue their employers. However, there are times when an injured worker can obtain additional compensation by filing a personal injury lawsuit in addition to a workers’ compensation claim. For example, a police officer responding to a call in injured by the negligence of a third party driving an automobile.
When Can I File a Personal Injury Lawsuit for a Workplace Accident?
Workers’ compensation laws protect employers against lawsuits from injured employees except in cases of intentional torts. However, those laws don’t protect parties other than your employer. There are many cases where a worker injury is caused by a third party (someone other than you or your employer):
- Auto accidents occurring on the job
- Injuries caused by trucks and delivery vehicles on the job
- Injuries caused by other contractors or vendors at job sites
- Product liability claims against manufacturers of equipment or chemicals used on the job
- Negligent treatment by doctors or other medical care givers after you are injured on the job that enhanced the original injury
If you are injured in an auto accident or by anyone who doesn’t work for your employer, you can seek additional compensation by filing a personal injury lawsuit against the negligent party.
When Can I Sue My Employer for Personal Injury?
If your employer removes a safety guard from a machine or deliberately withholds information about a workplace hazard and you are injured as a result, you can file an intentional tort lawsuit against your employer. You can also receive additional workers’ compensation benefits if your employer violates a specific workplace safety requirement (VSSR) established by law or by the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation.
For more information about workers’ compensation, third-party claims, and potential lawsuits, it’s best to reach out to an experienced attorney. Contact Taubman Law today for a free consultation to evaluate your case for workers’ compensation and to determine if you have additional cases for personal injury.