If you were injured at the workplace or while performing job duties, you
might be wondering if you should file a workers’ compensation claim
or a personal injury lawsuit. In most cases, you are only eligible to
recover workers’ comp benefits if your employer, your coworker,
or even your own actions caused your workplace injury.
However, if your injury was caused by a third party, which is an individual
or business entity who isn’t part of your company, you may file
a separate personal injury lawsuit against this party. For instance, if
you are out running an errand for your employer and you are struck by
another vehicle while driving, you may recover workers’ comp benefits
from your employer and recover monetary damages from the personal injury
lawsuit against the negligent driver.
If you were injured by defective machinery or an inherently dangerous piece
of equipment, you may file a personal injury lawsuit against the manufacturer
of the machine or equipment. If you become injured or fall ill after being
exposed to a toxic chemical, you may sue the manufacturer of the substance
and even manufacturers of ineffective safety equipment.
Additionally, there are some instances where you can file a personal injury
lawsuit against your employer, even though you relinquish the right to
do so if you are covered by workers’ compensation insurance. If
your employer intentionally caused your injury, rather than acted in a
negligent manner, you may file for both workers’ compensation benefits
and personal injury damages. Also, if your employer carries insufficient
workers’ compensation, or not whatsoever, you can recover damages
from a personal injury lawsuit.
Law Offices of Wax & Wax, our Glendale workers’ compensation attorneys recommend you pursue
both types of awards if you are eligible to do so since you are able to
recover more damages in a personal injury lawsuit. For instance, workers’
comp benefits consist of past and future medical expenses, lost wages
up to a specific amount, permanent disability benefits, and vocational
training, while a personal injury settlement also includes noneconomic
damages such as pain and suffering, emotional distress, and loss of enjoyment
of life. Noneconomic damages are not available through a workers’
For more information about your workplace injury,
contact us and schedule a free consultation today.