I Broke My Leg in a Maryland Traffic Accident While Driving a Company Car. Can I File a Personal Injury Claim Against My Employer?
Strictly speaking, no. Any injuries that you received while “on the job” should be covered by Maryland’s workers’ compensation insurance. As part of that program, in which most every company is legally required to participate, an injured employee is barred from suing their employer for damages arising from on-the-job accidents. This is because workers’ comp is designed to cover the costs of medical care resulting from injuries suffered while at work.
In Maryland, our workers’ compensation law states that an employee’s injury or illness must be “an accidental personal injury arising out of and in the course of employment” in order for the worker to receive compensatory benefits, which includes related medical expenses. For an injury to be “compensable” it must:
- Result from an accident
- Arise out of the course of employment
- Occur in the course of employment
Although injured workers are not permitted to sue their company for damages following an on-the-job injury accident, depending on the circumstances, victims may be able to file a personal injury claim against a negligent third-party. This is an important option since workers’ comp benefits are often insufficient to cover the wide range of financial consequences that a worker can suffer in the wake of an employment-related injury; this can often include a significant loss of income arising from not being able to work during their convalescence.
At Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC, we understand that workers’ comp insurance can only make up for a fraction of a victim’s lost income. This is why we dedicate our legal expertise to helping those workers who have been badly hurt through the thoughtless actions of a negligent third-party. We consider all aspects of a victim’s personal injury case to determine the proper course of legal action. For instance Workers’ comp does not provide compensation for pain and suffering, which is typically an integral part of many personal injury claims.
It is important to remember that here in Maryland not every workplace injury is eligible for workmen’s comp benefits. Furthermore, employers and the insurance companies that provide workers’ comp policies may often search for any reason to deny or underpay a valid on-the-job injury claim. Some examples of work-related injury scenarios that may be remedied with a third-party personal injury claim include the following:
- An employee driving as part of her job requirements (delivering customer packages, picking up office supplies, traveling to or from a client’s office or manufacturing facility, etc.) is hit by a distracted motorist
- While working away from his own office at a customer’s location, an employee receives a serious injury due to a dangerous on-premises condition known to the owner of that property but not as yet fixed or repaired
- A factory floor worker is badly injured by a piece of defective production machinery known to the OE manufacturer to be defective but never communicated to the victim or her employer
As Maryland personal injury attorneys, Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC, has the litigation experience and legal background to assist victims recover damages from third-party defendants. Keep in mind, that while injured workers need not prove fault in order to receive workers’ comp benefits, they are required to prove negligence in in a civil personal injury lawsuit against a third party; this is where skilled legal help is invaluable. Our lawyers are willing and able to discuss your case and help you understand your rights under the laws of the State of Maryland. Feel free to contact our law offices today so that we may schedule your free, no-obligation initial legal consultation.