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The Difference Between A Workers' Comp Claim And A Third-Party Claim


Workers’ Compensation Claims & Third-Party Lawsuits

If you are injured in a workplace accident, there are various steps that you have to take. All employers in the State of New Jersey are required to have Worker’s Compensation insurance to protect employees who are injured while performing work-related duties.

In the State of New Jersey, you cannot sue your co-employee or your employer if you are injured during the course of your employment. However, sometimes the circumstances of your accident give rise to what is known as a “Third-Party” claim if you are hurt as a result of the actions of another person. While the facts of the accident may be the same, our team may look at them in different ways.

Workers’ Compensation Claims

Workers’ compensation claims cover injuries that occur on the job. Civil lawsuits cannot be filed against co-workers or employers for injuries sustained on the job. There are some situations, though, in which civil lawsuits can be filed if the employer was grossly negligent. These are very difficult claims, and there has to be proof that the employer was well-aware that the worker would get hurt. Workers’ compensation insurance provides benefits including reasonable and necessary treatment for the related injury. The injured worker is also entitled to temporary disability benefits for the time that they are unable to work, and permanency benefits if they sustained a serious and permanent injury.

Workers’ compensation claims usually begin with the employee immediately informing the employer or supervisor of the accident. You should also seek medical attention. In New Jersey, the Worker’s Compensation carrier has the right to control the treatment. This means they get to choose which doctors you see and when. If you feel that your medical treatment is not being provided fast enough or appropriately, you should immediately talk to one of our lawyers right away.

If the doctor says that you need to be out of work to recuperate, the insurance carrier must pay temporary disability benefits.

Third-Party Negligence & Workers’ Comp

Third-party lawsuits arise out of situations in which a worker’s injuries were caused by some party other than the employer. An employee is a party and the employer is a party, therefore injuries and illnesses caused by some other party can result in third-party lawsuits. The parties most often involved in third-party claims after a workplace accident include:

  • Other employers or supervisors, including contractors
  • Property owners
  • Vehicle drivers
  • Machine manufacturers

When another contractor does not provide proper safety measures, or a property owner does not address dangers when a worker is performing job duties on their grounds, these are situations in which third-party claims are most common. This can also include an injury sustained by a defective machine. This could make the machine’s manufacturer liable for either defective manufacturing, defective design, or failure to warn. If you are on-duty and in the car with another driver or company’s driver, and they cause an accident, the driver may be liable.

No matter the situation, if you need to file a Worker’s Compensation claim or third-party claim, our New Jersey Worker’s Compensation attorneys can help you. Levinson Axelrod, P.A. is backed by more than 75 years of quality representation and we are ready to help you. Call us today to discuss your potential case.

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