Personal injuries in contrast to. Workers’ Compensation claims San Francisco Examiner


by Christopher B. Dolan and Megan Irish

My buddy Angelino is an expert in garage door repairs He was injured while working. When he was in the ladder, to work at an overhead door opener homeowner put some boxes on top of the ladder. The homeowner fell onto them when his ladder was down and injured his ankle. He claims he’s gone off the job for about a week since then and is preparing an claim for worker’s compensation. The homeowner may have an element of responsibility as he could not be able to have fallen and fractured his ankle if he didn’t set up boxes around his back. Does the homeowner also have a responsibility?


— Kisha J., San Francisco

Dear Kisha,

The claim of your friend could be a both workers’ compensation claim, as well as a third-party personal injury lawsuit. These two kinds of claims work together and are able to be presented at the same time. The most fundamentally workers’ compensation claims is less lenient in terms of amount of compensation that is available, however the majority of times, it’s quick to be awarded without examination of the victim’s responsibility. Third-party personal injury cases typically result in more money, however they generally take longer to be awarded and investigate the individual’s contribution to the injuries and damages.

The workers’ compensation system is an “no blame” system. If the accident took place while the person working the issue is not who was responsible for the accident. There is no need to prove that their employees or employers committed any wrongdoing. If the person who was injured was guilty of a crime the injured party is usually protected. Workers compensation has only a limited amount of coverage and can only be used to pay the cost of medical treatment and also compensate for wage loss. Workers’ compensation claims do not cover general damages.

When a third party action is brought, in which someone is blamed in the wrong way an injured person may pursue a claim for both specific as well as general damages. In a third-party lawsuit, the party who is injured must demonstrate the other party to be negligent, and the negligent act of the third party led to the damage. As an example, the failure to stop at the traffic light and resulting in a accident could qualify as negligent conduct by someone else that resulted in injury to the victim. In this scenario, specific damages will be offered and can are, in general terms, the things that an injured party is able to prove, like medical bills as well as lost wages.

Furthermore, in a third-party lawsuit, one may also be able to collect general damages that are generally called the pain and suffering. Laws cover physical as well as mental suffering and pain as well as loss of enjoyment life, and physical impairment, inconvenience or inconvenience, stress, the feeling of humiliation, and emotional pain as components in general damage.

The majority of third-party claims can be brought when a person outside of the employer or colleague was in the wrong. Most often, the circumstances in which employees file a third-party lawsuit for accidents that happened while they were at work are defective products (action in which a claim is brought against the producer of the item used in the course of work) in the event that the injury resulted from a poisonous or illicit substance, the company did not have the insurance for workers’ compensation and the incident resulted from a third party that wasn’t a member of the business.

Personal injuries claims may be filed simultaneously. In the event that they are, the third-party claim could be needed to compensate the worker’s compensation claim. In the case of example, if your friend’s medical expenses have been paid by his workers’ compensation claim and he seeks to claim for the medical specific damage in his third-party claim and the matter is a workers compensation claim, you might seek reimbursement of what is paid to your friend in the form of compensation for his loss. This is because the party who has suffered injury is only entitled to his wages only once. When he gets the replacement of wages from workers’ compensation and is later paid out by a third party, it’s right that compensation systems be paid back.

Though most workplaces offer worker’s insurance however, there are two distinct categories of workers that do not have coverage for injuries suffered on the job under a worker’s compensation policy. Two of them include railroad workers from interstates as well as crew members of boats. Railway workers are able to file a claim for injury pursuant to the Federal Employers Liability Act, as well as vessel crew members may make injury claims pursuant to the Jones Act.

When you’re faced with this issue you’ve been talking about, the homeowners might be subject to a lawsuit as a third party defendant. In order to bring an action against the home owner, the homeowner’s actions must be scrutinized to determine if their actions were reckless. A lawyer will need examine the circumstances surrounding the accident and decide whether there’s a basis to pursue the homeowner. We wish him an speedy recovery.

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Christopher B. Dolan is the proprietor Christopher B. Dolan is the owner of Dolan Law Firm, PC. Megan Irish is a Senior Associate Attorney within the Oakland Office. Our clients are located throughout California, the San Francisco Bay Area and California with our offices located situated in San Francisco, Oakland and Los Angeles. Email questions and topics for future articles to: help@dolanlawfirm.com. Every situation is unique, and this article is not legal guidance. We suggest that you speak an experienced attorney for a thorough understanding of your rights.