In most cases, employees cannot sue (in personal injury) their employers for injuries they received at work. However, in some cases, an employee injured at work may sue a person or business whose carelessness caused the employee’s injuries. When this happens, the injured employee can also recover workers’ compensation benefits. This scenario is what this article calls as “double-dipping” (or what lawyers call third-party workers’ compensation claims). I refer to this as “double-dipping” because your lawyers may pursue 2 pools of money to recover in your case: the personal injury pool and the workers’ compensation pool. Below, are a few examples of “double-dipping” cases: 1. A car hit a company delivery person while he drove the company car for work. 2. A construction worker is injured on-site while working for a subcontractor. 3. A construction worker inhales asbestos on the job and is later diagnosed with cancer These are a few examples when employees may pursue both personal injury and workers’ compensation claims.
Pursuing “double-dipping” legal situations with a lawyer presents many benefits. First, your personal injury claim will provide you with pain and suffering increasing the value of your case. Remember, this is in addition to any of your workers’ compensation benefit. Second, workers’ compensation provides faster relief from lost wages and medical expenses. Third, good lawyers can handle insurance company workers’ compensation reimbursements which requires a special approach.
Yes, “double-dipping” can lead to large monetary recoveries in serious injury cases, but they are not without their challenges. These situations involve both workers’ compensation and personal injury legal issues which can make them complicated. Because every case is different, it is important to seek the representation of an experienced lawyer who will know the strategies that are best for your case. If you think you were injured in a “double-dipping” case, The Mance Law Group would like to help you. For more information, give our office a call at 912.574.4LAW (4529).