Work-related injuries are common and can lead to serious injury, impairment, and an inability to work. Generally, a worker injured on the job may not sue their employer or co-employee for injuries sustained on the job as workers' compensation is their only method of recovery for injuries. However, a person may make a claim against a third party for negligent contribution for the injury. What this means in practicality is that a person injured on the job by an employer or co-employee may only use worker's compensation to pay for medical costs and bills. A person at work injured by a third-party may assert alternate claims for recovery. Identifying and handling third-party claims are potentially complicated. It is important to find an attorney capable of spotting the difficult issues and guiding you through the process. Members of Goodnow|McKay are experienced with these claims and are here to help. We are committed to helping our clients recover fair compensation. We are often able to negotiate reasonable settlements with the responsible insurance companies, but we are willing to fight for our clients through trial if necessary.
Common Types of Claims:
Third-Party Claims: Third-party claims are the primary method of recovery for non-workers' compensation-related claims. If a third party injures you while on the job it is possible you will have a claim separate and apart from the workers' compensation claim.
Employer/Co-Employee Claims: Generally, workers' compensation is the exclusive remedy for injuries sustained on the job. However, the exclusive remedy rule does not protect an employer or co-employee from liability for willful misconduct.
Please remember that the method of monetary recovery will depend on the cause of injury. For example, if you are bitten by a dog during work the dog owner's renters or homeowners' insurance policy will be the primary method of recovery. If you are in an automobile accident the primary method of recovery will be various types of car insurance.
Examples of Third-Party Claims:
Third-party claims can be difficult to identify. Generally, if fault for your injuries lies with someone who is not an employer or co-employee you may have a third- party claim. Common examples include a person being hit by a motorist while working or a dog biting a delivery carrier. While those may seem like obvious examples, some are harder to identify—for example a dog groomer who is bitten by a dog while working may have a claim against the dog owner.
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Chris Goodnow is licensed in Arizona. Justin McKay is licensed in Arizona. Matters in other areas are handled by licensed attorneys employed, associated, or co-counseled with Goodnow|McKay.