A Third Party Caused My Work Injuries: Now What?
Work injuries can happen on the job in Fort Lauderdale and throughout South Florida for a wide range of reasons. Often, someone’s negligence is what causes or results in a workplace injury. It is important to know that, under Florida law, workers’ compensation is a no-fault system. As such, your ability to obtain benefits after a workplace accident does not require you to prove that someone was at fault, and your benefits will not be reduced even if your own negligence (in most circumstances) played a role in causing your injury. What that no-fault system also means, however, is that you cannot sue an employer or a co-worker for your work injury. But what happens when a third party causes your work injuries?
In short, when a third party causes a person’s workplace injury, there are two key things to know: you can still be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits, but you also could be eligible to file a lawsuit. What do you need to do after a third party causes a work injury? Consider the following information from our Fort Lauderdale workers’ compensation lawyers.
Gather As Much Evidence and Information As You Can
First, as with any type of injury, gather as much evidence and information as you can at the scene of the accident or injury. Be sure to obtain the name and contact information for any third party who caused the injury if relevant, such as a motor vehicle driver. If the third party was the designer or manufacturer of a defective product, be sure to obtain any detailed information about the product (including serial numbers).
Know That You Can Be Eligible for Workers’ Compensation Coverage
Like we clarified, whether a co-worker, employer, or third party causes your injury, your eligibility for workers’ compensation coverage is not impacted. You can obtain coverage as long as you meet all other requirements.
Find Out More About Filing a Third-Party Injury Lawsuit
One of the major differences between a workplace injury in South Florida caused by the negligence of a party at work (such as the employer, a co-worker, or even the employee themselves) and a third party is that the injured worker may be able to seek additional compensation when a third party is at fault. To be clear, when a third party causes a workplace injury, the injured worker can still be eligible for workers’ compensation coverage — the fact that a third party caused the injury does not affect eligibility for workers’ compensation benefits. What does change, however, is that the injured worker also may be eligible to file an injury lawsuit against that third party in addition to seeking workers’ compensation benefits.
Accordingly, if a third party caused your injuries, it is critical to speak with your workers’ compensation lawyer in Fort Lauderdale not only about workers’ compensation benefits, but also about your options for filing a civil lawsuit.
Contact a Fort Lauderdale Workers’ Compensation Attorney for Assistance
If you have any questions about your options for obtaining benefits or need assistance with your workers’ compensation case more generally, you should get in touch with one of the experienced Fort Lauderdale workers’ compensation lawyers at the Law Offices of David M. Benenfeld, P.A. today.