On-the-job injuries are unfortunately common. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, over 2.9 million nonfatal workplace injuries and illnesses were reported by private industry employers in 2016.
Of those 2.9 million, over 892,000 injuries and illnesses resulted in days away from work. While some individuals able to return to work after their injuries, others are not, including over 5,000 people who died due to work-related injuries in 2016.
Unlike most states, Texas allows private employers to choose whether to carry workers’ compensation insurance coverage. Under these policies, an injured worker may collect lost wages and medical benefits related to their on-the-job injury. However, even when an employer has a workers’ compensation policy, it often fails to provide a full financial recovery to an injured worker.
In some situations, an injured worker may be able to obtain compensation beyond their employer’s workers’ compensation policy. More specifically, an injured worker entitled to bring a “third-party claim” against a negligent third party that is responsible for the worker’s injury. Examples of third-party claims include:
- Equipment or manufacturer defects: When equipment malfunctions and causes an injury, the manufacturer may be held accountable.
- Improper safety practices: An employee may work for one employer on a job involving multiple companies. If the second company should have and did not follow proper safety guidelines, it may be held liable for the accident.
- Premises liability: An injury sustained by a worker on someone else’s property as a result of a known danger may result in a third-party liability claim.
For more information regarding third-party liability for an on-the-job injury, please contact our nationally recognized legal team at (903) 597-6000.
Justin is an attorney at Roberts & Roberts and focuses his practice on mass tort litigation, where he specializes in helping individuals who are harmed by recalled or unsafe pharmaceutical drugs and medical devices. He has earned recognition as a “Top 40 Under 40” Trial Lawyer by the National Trial Lawyers. Prior to joining Roberts & Roberts, Justin served as an attorney in all three branches of Texas’s state government, including as a Briefing Attorney on the Texas Supreme Court. He also represented electric and natural gas utilities in complex regulatory proceedings before the Public Utility Commission of Texas and the Railroad Commission of Texas. Justin is a published author in the St. Mary’s Law Journal.