If you’ve been injured at work, you may be able to file a claim for third-party personal injury compensation in lieu of your work injury compensation claim. To check if this is a viable option for you, you’ll need to consult with a law firm in Richmond, VA.
What is a third-party claim?
In legalese, a third-party claim is a term for a tort claim in which an injured worker files against someone other than his or her employer.
Under Virginia law, employees can’t sue their employer. Instead, they usually opt to file for workers’ comp. However, in many workplace accidents, a third-party may also be partly liable for the injuries. In these situations, you can file a third-party claim, which has the potential to result in a much larger settlement than workers’ comp cases.
Workers’ compensation benefits are often inadequate. If you’ve suffered a life-altering injury at work your limited workers’ comp benefits may not be enough to sustain you or your family. Also, neither will they make up for all the pain and suffering you’ve experienced as a result of your injuries.
For example, if you were doing construction work on one of the buildings in Capitol Square, had an accident due to faulty equipment, and suffered a traumatic brain injury as a result, will temporary workers’ comp benefits really atone for all the painful repercussions you’re facing?
Types of Third-Party Injury Claims
There are several types of work-related instances in which a third-party claim for personal injury compensation may be in order.
- Construction accidents – if you’re injured while working at a site, there may a host of third parties that can be held responsible including contractors, subcontractors, a property owner, heavy equipment operators, or defective equipment manufacturers.
- Car accidents – if you were on delivery or driving a vehicle for a work-related duty, or if you were injured in a car accident while on duty that was caused by a driver who’s not a co-worker, a third party claim may be an option.
- Slip and fall accidents – if you sustain injuries in a slip and fall accident at work, the property owner may be considered a negligent party, depending upon the circumstances.
Before going through with your work injury compensation claim, contact a law firm in Richmond, VA, to see if a third-party claim may be applicable.
Proving Negligence for a Personal Injury Claim
A work injury compensation claim varies from a personal injury claim in a number of ways, one of which is the burden of proof.
If you and your attorney at law firm in Richmond, VA , establish that a third-party claim is the right route for you to take, you’ll have the burden of proving the responsible party’s negligence to the courts in order to receive any personal injury compensation.
In order to win your case, you and your attorney will have to show that:
- the third party owed you a legal duty of care;
- they failed to carry out that duty;
- the responsible party’s negligence caused your injuries; and
- you sustained real and calculable damages as a result of the accident.
As it stands, this is easier said than done. Establishing proof in a third party claim requires the counsel and skill of an experienced law firm in Richmond, VA.
Filing a Third-Party Claim
In Virginia, it’s important to note that if you try to file a third party claim without informing your employer or the insurance carrier, you’ll forfeit all your workers’ comp benefits – you’ll want to avoid this at all costs. Your attorney can help ensure that you abide by the board’s rules and regulations. The insurance company has an automatic lien on any third party settlement.
There are no simple, one-size-fits-all solutions for work injury claims; each case is unique. If you’ve sustained a work injury and think you may qualify for personal injury compensation, consult with an attorney who can go over your options with you.
A work injury compensation claim may not grant you the means to pay all your bills or continue taking care of your family. You owe it to yourself and your family to see if there are any other forms of financial remuneration you may be able to collect.
Contact a Law Firm in Richmond, VA
When you have difficulties with your work-related injury claim, a Virginia workplace injury attorney can bear some of the burden you’ve been placed under. To get back on your feet, whether it means getting back to work or getting the benefits you deserve, order a copy of our free book, the Ultimate Guide to Workers’ Compensation in Virginia, and contact a workers’ comp attorney at the Injured Workers Law Firm for a no-cost consultation – 804-755-7755.