Understanding Third-Party Claims

On Behalf of | Jul 15, 2018 | Buffalo Law Blog, Firm News, Personal Injury

Have you been injured and now you want help understanding third-party claims? A first-party claim is your claim against your employer for workers’ compensation benefits. If you want to receive compensation for pain, suffering, and other damages that you might have, you would have to file a claim against a third party, someone outside of that employer/employee relationship. A third party could be another subcontractor, a general contractor, or an owner.

Understanding Third-Party Claims

You may want to make sure that you have an idea of potential third parties at the initial stages so that you can determine who is responsible for what on the construction site, allowing you to properly determine against whom you may file your third-party claim. To illustrate, people can be involved in automobile accidents while driving a company vehicle, and though these people may not be able to sue their employers for the accident, they can sue the individuals who caused the accident.

Understanding Third-Party Claims | Workers’ Compensation Claim and Third-Party Claim

Employees can file workers’ compensation claims and still preserve their right to sue other parties for their injuries. You cannot receive medical coverage without filing a workers’ compensation claim, but if you do have a third-party claim, the workers’ compensation carrier will assert that it has a lien, and there are certain provisions in the workers’ compensation law that give the carrier that right. You may have to pay some money back to the workers’ compensation carrier once a case is settled.

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Understanding Third-Party Claims | Staying Safe on a Job Site

As a construction worker, your obligation is simply to use the safety devices that are available to you. Sometimes when you do not do this, and you are injured, this can be a hindrance in bringing a third-party claim. This will not necessarily eliminate such a claim, but your failure to use those safety devices can impede us from bringing a successful claim. Employers are the ones who are ultimately responsible for providing the proper safety devices. If you are not provided the proper safety devices, you will have a claim.

Understanding Third-Party Claims | Claims in Which You Are Blamed for Your Injury

You are always eligible to file a workers’ compensation claim, whether you were responsible for your accident or not. Even if, for example, you fall off a ladder, there are certain provisions within the construction codes in New York State that you may use in your defense. When using a ladder, employers have to make sure that there are certain safeguards in place. If someone is on a ladder, the worker is required to use tie-offs, have someone else holding the ladder, make sure that the ladder is positioned properly, and ensure that the ladder is in working condition. Do not automatically assume that you do not have a claim because you think you may have done something wrong. Many times, there are certain safety standards that the employer, the general contractor, or the owner of the construction site was not following, and this lack of compliance with regulations could lead to a third-party claim, granting you compensation for your injuries in addition to workers’ compensation.

If you need legal assistance, please call our Hamburg personal injury lawyers today for a free confidential case evaluation.


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