“What do you mean I may have a personal injury claim even though I was hurt on the job?”

If I had a nickel for every time I heard that I would be rich. Most people believe, understandably so, that if you are hurt on the job your only recourse is through Workmen’s Compensation. That is not necessarily the case.

Workmen’s Compensation is designed to provide assistance in work related incidents. However, if you are working and are injured by a “third party,” meaning a non- employee, then there could be a potential personal injury claim outside of the Workmen’s Compensation system. [could someone collect from both Workman’s comp AND A personal Injury claim? How would that work?]

By way of example, let’s say a state trooper is driving down I-75 and is hit by another vehicle and injured. That trooper would have a personal injury claim against the negligent person that hit him. If however she was hit by a fellow state trooper, then she would not have a personal injury claim. Her medical bills would be covered solely by Workmen’s Compensation.

As a second example, let’s say an electrician is working on a construction project. As he is climbing up to the roof, the ladder attached to the building breaks and he gets hurt. If the ladder was negligently manufactured then he would have a potential claim against the maker of the ladder even though he was hurt on the job.

In conclusion, people injured on the job should not necessarily assume that they do not have a claim for personal injuries separate and apart from Workmen’s Compensation. If you have been injured on the job due to the negligent actions of a third party I would encourage you to call our office for a free consultation.