Worker’s Third Party Action
For the most part, the Workers’ Compensation Law prohibits an employee from maintaining a lawsuit for personal injuries against his or her employer. However, the victim of an on-the-job accident is permitted to sue a “third party” for pain and suffering compensation if that third party caused or contributed to the accident or the injuries. This applies to various work scenarios from construction-site workers to delivery persons to building workers to office personnel, etc. For example, if a building worker is injured on the job, that worker will receive worker’s compensation through the employer. But if the cause of the accident and the worker’s injuries were due to the negligence of a third-party (not the employer), the worker may additionally have a third-party liability claim (against the negligent third-party). The idea behind this system is that the employee receives Workers’ Compensation benefits through the employer’s Workers’ Compensation insurance and, in exchange, loses the right to sue the employer for pain and suffering. There is no similar system for a “third party”, who is not the employee or the employer. If you are injured on the job, don’t limit yourself to Workers’ Compensation. Consult a personal injury attorney to investigate whether any third parties may be liable to you to compensate you for your pain and suffering.