Philadelphia Work Injury Lawyers
Every year, tens of thousands of people are injured by accidents that occur while they are at work. Most of these accidents involve workers’ compensation claims, which provides a level of immunity to employers and co-workers in exchange for the worker receiving medical benefits and part of their wages while they recover.
However, workers’ compensation immunity does not preclude recovery from third-parties like product manufacturers who make dangerous machines, other drivers who cause accidents or negligent property owners who allow unsafe work environments. Some accidents that appear to only involve a workers’ compensation claim may actually have the potential for a third-party claim as well. It is important to recognize these claims because the workers’ compensation system does not provide any recovery to an injured worker for “non-economic damages” like pain and suffering, emotional distress or loss of life’s pleasures.
If you are injured by a machine at work because it lacks a required safety feature, your employer might have immunity, but the manufacturer of that machine does not. Similarly, if you are driving a work vehicle that is involved in an accident with a negligent driver, the fact that you were working at the time only determines who pays for your medical bills- it does not preclude you from pursuing a claim against that other driver.
Work-related injuries require careful coordination with the workers’ compensation counsel to ensure important evidence is preserved and judicial determinations in the workers’ compensation system do not adversely affect the third-party claim. Additionally, the workers’ compensation insurance carrier will seek repayment of the medical and indemnity benefits it paid which needs to be considered during settlement negotiations.
If you or a loved one has been injured at work, we can help. Contact our office today for a free case evaluation and to review your legal options.