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Workers’ Comp and Third Party Claims in Scranton, PA

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Third Party Claims in Workers’ Compensation Cases

When a workplace injury keeps you off the job, the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act entitles you to seek workers’ compensation benefits for help with medical expenses and lost wages while you are recuperating. Many workers believe they may only receive compensation through their employer’s workers’ compensation insurance if injured on the job. However, a negligent third party other than your employer may be held responsible for your injury. If you are hurt at work due to the negligence of a third party, you deserve the maximum compensation for your injuries. In addition to seeking workers’ compensation benefits, you have the right to file a third-party workers’ compensation claim for personal injury with the help of a Scranton workers’ comp attorney.

What’s The Difference Between a Third Party Claim and Workers’ Comp?

scranton workers compensation lawyerWorkers ‘ compensation benefits may pay for your injuries when you are hurt on the job in Scranton. This includes but is not limited to medical bills, lost wages, disability benefits, specific loss, and vocational costs. If a family member lost their life as a result of a workplace accident, the surviving family may receive death benefits.

Pennsylvania is a no-fault state for workers’ compensation, and as such, you do not need to prove your employer was at fault for your work-related injuries. Whether you have suffered an on-the-job injury, an injury at an off-site location while performing your job duties, health problems due to exposure at work, or repetitive motion-related conditions, you are most likely covered under the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act.

In many instances, a negligent third party may be liable for your workplace injury, allowing you to go after them with a personal injury or third party workers’ comp claim. To win compensation in a third party claim, you need to prove that the other party, be it a single person or entity, was either negligent or set out to cause you harm intentionally. A third-party workers’ compensation claim allows you to sue the other party for pain and suffering, emotional distress, and other related damages. For these reasons, you need an experienced Scranton injury lawyer.

Can I Sue My Employer If I Was Injured On the Job?

Pennsylvania’s workers’ compensation system offers you no-fault financial support, including payment for medical bills and lost wages should you become ill or injured on the job. In return, your employer cannot be sued except for specific, extraordinary circumstances.

However, if a third party’s negligence is to blame for your illness or injury, you may have the right to file a third party liability lawsuit against them for damages.

How Do I Know I Have a Third Party Claim?

scranton workers' comp attorneyWhen you’re injured or become ill at work, your first thought is to consider workers’ compensation. Most employees know they are eligible for workers’ compensation benefits when someone sustains an on-the-job injury. An example of this would be if you are on a job site and a piece of heavy equipment falls on you, causing injury to your leg. If your company owns and operates the equipment, you would be eligible for workman’s compensation insurance.

Many workers don’t realize that they can also make a third-party workers’ comp claim. Using this example, if the equipment is owned and operated by another company for which you don’t work but happen to be on site. In this instance, you may be able to submit a claim for workers’ compensation benefits and file a third-party liability claim against the other company.

When you suffer an injury or become ill due to a workplace injury, your workplace benefits only cover certain types of claims, including incidents caused by fellow employees and your employer. You have the right to workers’ compensation benefits should any unforeseen accident at work cause you injury, or, in some cases, even death. Under these circumstances, workers’ compensation will cover many of your immediate needs, such as medical expenses, lost wages, and, in the case of death, lost paychecks in the form of benefits for your family.

Workers’ compensation does preclude you from filing a lawsuit against your employer for your injuries. However, there are some cases where your employer may face fines and penalties for OSHA violations and other workplace hazards revealed by your accident.

Under Pennsylvania law, workers can file personal injury or third-party liability lawsuits against any third-party person or entity responsible for their injury while on the job. However, if a third party was negligent, causing you on-the-job injury, you have the right to file a third-party workers’ compensation claim against them. Unlike workers’ comp insurance, workers’ compensation third-party claims can seek damages for pain and suffering, emotional distress, lost future employment opportunities, and other monetary compensation.

How Do I Prove a Third Party Caused My Work Injury?

Proving that a third party was negligent in causing your injuries on the job is, in many ways, much more complex than filing for workers’ compensation benefits. In Pennsylvania, workers’ comp is considered no-fault, meaning you do not need to prove your employer was at fault if you are injured at work.

However, with a third-party liability claim, the burden of proof is higher. In general, you need to show that the third party breached their duty of care toward you, that the breach caused your injuries, and that your injuries require compensation. While it is a high hurdle, our Scranton workers’ comp attorneys have decades of experience helping workers like you receive the compensation they deserve.

How Long Do I Have to File a Third Party Claim?

When filing for a third party, you need to act fast. In Pennsylvania, employees only have 120 days from the incident date to make a claim. It is a complex process, especially when certain illnesses, such as exposure to toxic substances, may not be noticeable for years.

However, filing a third-party liability claim gives you much more flexibility. Pennsylvania allows workers like you two years from the date of the incident to make a third-party claim. In some cases, such as illnesses that are not immediately noticeable, officials can extend the statute of limitations.

Either way, you deserve compensation. A Scranton workmans’ comp lawyer at Munley Law Personal Injury Attorneys can help you. Contact us for a free consultation today.

Who Can Be Considered a Third Party?

There are many different persons and entities whose negligence can invoke a third-party liability claim. Following are examples. For help determining if a negligent third party caused your injury at work, contact a Scranton workers’ compensation attorney at Munley Law Personal Injury Attorneys for a free consultation.

  • Cleaning companies can keep an office or a job site running, but if someone forgets to put up a sign, which leads to a slip and fall accident, that makes them a negligent third party.
  • Contractors and Subcontractors can be negligent third parties. If a subcontractor on your job site is responsible for your injury, you may be able to initiate a third-party lawsuit against them. Conversely, they may be liable if you work for a subcontractor and the general contractor is responsible for your injury.
  • Construction sites usually have many third parties on the job, including vendors, supplies, and other companies, all of whom can be negligent third parties.
  • Defective Equipment and Products, including faulty vehicles, defective construction equipment, poorly maintained and inherently dangerous safety equipment that didn’t work as expected, and any other equipment used on the job that causes your injury can be cause for a third-party liability claim. In this case, you would file a lawsuit against the product manufacturer.
  • Drivers who have to travel for work and receive injuries in a car accident can file a third-party liability claim against the other driver who caused the accident. You can also file third-party workers’ compensation claims against reckless drivers at fault for an automobile accident.
  • Exposure to a Toxic Substance while on a job site may cause you to become seriously ill and even hinder you, making it impossible to work. Substances such as asbestos or lead are hazardous and sometimes unknown for years. In these cases, you may be able to sue the manufacturer of the toxic substance or even the manufacturer of the safety equipment as a negligent third party.
  • Government or Other Public entities that fail to maintain critical infrastructure, such as gas and electrical lines, that have caused you injury can all be a party to a third-party workers’ compensation claim.
  • Property Owners need to maintain the safety and security of their properties at all times. If unsafe working conditions cause you to be injured on someone else’s property, you may be able to receive compensation through a third-party liability claim.
  • Security can give rise to third-party workers’ comp claims. If you work somewhere with inadequate security and criminal activity results in you being injured, you could have the right to compensation.

Why Choose Our Scranton Workers’ Compensation Lawyers?

When you file for workman’s compensation benefits, you need experienced attorneys who understand the system. You want an attorney who can determine whether or not you’re eligible for compensation and who will fight for you if your claim is denied. Moreover, you want a lawyer with expertise who can assist you with identifying negligent third parties.

Filing for workers’ compensation benefits while making a third-party liability claim can be difficult. The work injury lawyers at Munley Law Personal Injury Attorneys have almost six decades of experience fighting for people like you. We can manage both sides of your case while helping you to receive the compensation you deserve. From our office in Scranton, Lackawanna County, our Munley Law Personal Injury Attorneys workers’ compensation lawyers serve the surrounding area.

We offer a confidential and free consultation to assess whether you have a legitimate case. Failing to consult with an attorney following an on-the-job injury may fail in receiving the benefits you are qualified for.

    Munley Law Personal Injury Attorneys

    227 Penn Ave,
    Scranton, PA 18503
    (570)865-4699

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