There are many instances when an employee can file both a workers’ compensation claim and a personal injury claim. These two claims can arise from the same accident. Two of the most common circumstances that leads to dual claims are car accidents and construction accidents. Sometimes the process can be tricky if you file both of these claims. But do not let it deter you. An experienced workers’ comp attorney like Mark L. Newman can help you decide if going this route is best for you.
Personal injury vs. workers’ comp
Personal injury and workers’ compensation are two completely different systems. Personal injury claims provide full compensation if you are able to prove that someone is at fault for your injuries. Workers’ compensation provides limited, no-fault benefits.
Personal injury: proving fault
Proving negligence and fault is necessary to a successful personal injury suit. Just because you slipped and fell in a parking lot does not mean you will be awarded any compensation from a personal injury case. You and your attorney need to prove that the store did not maintain the parking lot and by acting negligently, they caused your accident.
Workers’ compensation: no fault required
Workers’ compensation has nothing to do with fault. You do not need to prove your co-workers or employer boss did anything wrong. Even if you were negligent and your negligence caused your own injury, you are still entitled to receive workers’ compensation benefits. Any employee that was injured on the job is entitled to receive workers’ compensation benefits. There are very limited exceptions to this rule.
Can I file a personal injury claim and a workers’ comp claim?
Yes. You have the right to file a personal injury claim if you get hurt on the job and the injury was caused by the negligence of a third party. You should also file a workers’ compensation claim because this claim will be processed more quickly and the Ohio BWC will pay for your medical bills and lost wages. However, if you receive a settlement in the personal injury case the Ohio BWC is entitled to be reimbursed for the medical benefits and compensation it paid. Mark L. Newman attorney has experience handling dual workers’ compensation and personal injury claims and can make sure you get the compensation you deserve.
When can I file a personal injury claim and a worker’s comp claim?
One of the most common instances of filing both a personal injury claim as well as a workers’ comp claim is from a construction accident injury. Here is an example:
- There are multiple contractors on a single, large construction site
- A bricklayer was on an elevated scaffolding. He dropped a tool on an electrician below him.
- The electrician sustained a head injury. Now he has a right to file a workers’ compensation claim. He also has the right to file a personal injury based on the negligence of the bricklayer and his or her employer.
Here is another common scenario:
- You were driving as part of your job. You are hit by another car and severely injured.
- In this case, you could file a workers’ compensation claim with the BWC. You can also file a personal injury claim against the driver who hit you.
What can I recover with a personal injury vs workers’ comp claim?
The best way we can explain how this works is through an example.
You were making a delivery for a food delivery service. Someone was texting and driving and ran a red light. They slammed into your car while you were finishing your last delivery of the day.
This was obviously a work-related crash. It might keep you out of work for a month. After filing a workers’ comp claim, you receive $30,000 in benefits. These will cover your medical expenses and lost wages.
After this, you consult with a Cincinnati personal injury attorney. After considering all the facts of your case, you decide to pursue a personal injury claim. This will cover medical costs, lost wages, physical therapy as well as pain and suffering. After your case concludes, you receive $75,000 in damages.
You received more money from the car insurance settlement than you did for your workers’ compensation claim for several reasons. First, workers’ compensation only pays two-thirds of your lost wages. Also, workers’ compensation does not compensate people for pain and suffering.
Because of the rule of subrogation, you will have to reimburse the Ohio BWC the $30,000 it paid for your medical treatment and lost wages out of your personal injury settlement. In the end, you will receive $45,000 from the car insurance settlement through your personal injury claim.
The insurance company and the Ohio BWC will handle the transfer of funds. This will prevent you from spending anything out of your own pocket.
Which attorney should I use: personal injury vs workers’ comp?
A workers’ compensation attorney should be familiar with the intricacies of the Ohio workers’ compensation system. They can counsel you to make the best decision possible.
There are some attorneys, like Mark L. Newman, who have experience in both workers’ comp and personal injury cases. These attorneys will be best equipped to advise you on which route you should take.
Free consultation with workers’ compensation attorney
If you’re deciding to file a personal injury claim vs workers’ comp or both, schedule a free consultation with an experienced work injury attorney. Mark L. Newman has been serving Ohio workers for over 30 years. He also has extensive experience in advising people considering a personal injury claim. Contact him online or by calling 513-721-1350.