Most people have heard of workers’ compensation. It is the system that exists in Pennsylvania and most other states that ensures workers receive payment for medical bills, loss of wages and other specific losses if they are injured on the job, regardless of fault. However, many people do not realize that the protection of workers’ compensation comes with a price: the inability under nearly all circumstances of an employee to sue an employer for personal injury, even if it is clear that the employer acted negligently. This can be a significant sacrifice as the benefits mandated by the workers’ compensation law are typically much less than what a civil suit could recover for a comparable injury.
However, the workers’ compensation law does not mean that injured workers cannot sue for on-the-job injuries. It means only that they cannot sue their employers. If the acts of a non-employer third party contributed to their injuries, they may still have a civil option beyond workers’ compensation:
- Injuries caused by defective equipment or machinery
- Injuries caused by dangerous or inadequately labeled chemicals
- Injuries caused by a dangerous condition on a premise other than that of the employer
- Injuries sustained in vehicle accidents that occur within the scope of employment
These are just some general examples of situations when a non-employer third party may be liable for an on-the-job injury. If you have suffered an injury at work under these or any similar circumstances, you may be able to pursue a civil suit while still collecting workers’ compensation benefits in the interim. A Collegeville injury attorney with experience handling third party suits for on-the-job injuries can evaluate the circumstances of your accident to determine what options you may have.
Get in touch with our firm today to find out more!