Work Injuries, Third Party Liability & Broken Promises

Third Party Liability

If injured on the job, you may have more than one claim.  Meaning, depending on the circumstances surrounding your accident, it may be possible to file a claim for worker’s compensation benefits and have grounds for damages connected with an auto accident, premises liability, personal injury, products liability, or other type of third party claim.  Third party claims are the most popular type of insurance claim filed in the United States.  As for auto accidents, any time you file a car insurance claim against someone else’s insurance policy, you are filing a third party claim.

A few examples would be if you sustained injuries while a passenger in a car that was involved in an accident.  In such a case, you would file a third party claim for damages against the driver’s car insurance company.  If you were in an out of state auto accident and determined not at fault, a claim could be filed against the other driver’s insurance company to recover damages.  If you were driving your own car on work-related business and were injured in an accident, you would be eligible for worker’s compensation benefits and a claim for damages against the driver that caused the accident.  Another way to explain third party claims is to state that any time you file an insurance claim wherein you are not the policy holder, you are filing a third-party claim.

So, if you are injured in the course and scope of employment, do you have any other claim besides a claim for worker’s compensation benefits?  In order to begin such a determination, reporting your work injury in a timely manner is the first step.  Failure to do so can result in losing your eligibility for workers compensation benefits.  Furthermore, failing to properly report the accident as being work related can certainly have a negative impact on any other potential claim you may have.

It’s common for a job injury to involve what is referred to as a third party claim.  At Dolman Law Group, our experienced trial attorneys are highly competent in handling both workers compensation and personal injury claims.  We’ve already provided the example wherein someone is driving for work purposes and is involved in auto accident. Another example would be someone who is injured as a result of defective machinery.  That person would have a claim for workers compensation benefits as their injury occurred while they were in the course and scope of their employment, and they would have a products liability claim against the manufacturer of the defective machinery or equipment.  There are instances in which employees are injured on job sites due to the negligence of someone unassociated with their employer.

Broken Promises

Do not be misled by any statements from your employer informing you to change the description of your work accident or otherwise report the accident was not work related. Some employers tell their employees to report their accident as having happened at home or anywhere else but on the job.   In order to ensure you receive all the benefits you are entitled to, whether they are workers compensation benefits alone, or workers compensation benefits and those provided in connection with a personal injury claim, do not be misled by your employer. If injured in an auto accident while on the job, some employers wrongfully inform their employees to tell hospitals or walk in clinics that they were not on the job at the time.

In exchange for such false reporting, the employer promises to pay for any medical bills generated as a result of such treatment.  Furthermore, the employee may also be promised payment of lost wages while they are out of work.  Such offers from your employer may sound attractive, but doing so is illegal insurance fraud.

It’s also true that the promises made by employers to employees in such circumstances are rarely ever honored.  Do you think your employer is going to payout thousands of dollars in the event your injury requires surgery?  Do you think your employer will continue to pay you while you’re out of work for months or more due to a work injury?  If you do, please call us at 727-853-6275 to gain a better understanding of the realities involved with work accidents.    

Pursuant to Florida Statute 440.185, you have 30 days to report your work injury to your employer.  Reporting your injury to a supervisor or manager will also comply with this requirement.  There are some exceptions to reporting your injury within 30 days.  However, the sooner you report your injury as having happened on the job, the better. Delays in reporting create questions in the minds of insurance adjusters as to both the cause and significance of any injury.

If employees always received exactly what they were entitled to receive from workers compensation insurance carriers, our law firm would have no reason to undertake representation of injured employees.  If you are not having any problems receiving worker’s compensation benefits now, unfortunately the chance that you will have problems in the future is much more likely than not.  We have undertaken representation of individuals who are not experiencing any current issues to help expedite resolving any problems that come about in the future.

In addition, it allows you to have a resource from which you can ask questions about your case.  Neither your employer nor the workers compensation insurance company will know you have an attorney, but the fact you do means you’re better prepared and informed.  If you are uncertain of how to proceed when injured on the job, contact our office for a free consultation.  We can be reached at 727-853-6275.

Dolman Law Group
5435 Main Street
New Port Richey, FL 34652
(727) 853-6275