If you’re injured or develop an illness at work, then you may be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. Workers’ comp benefits can help workers recover from their injuries by providing medical benefits and lost wages.
Because Texas is a no-fault basis state, you may be eligible for benefits regardless of who caused your injuries. In other words, if a co-worker or employer was negligent and caused your injuries, then you may get workers’ comp benefits. This happens even if you were at fault – unless your injury was deliberate.
However, there may be times when it’s beneficial to make a third-party workers’ comp claim. Workers often do this because they may not be able to or want to sue their employer or company. The purpose of a third-party claim is so that you can sue a third party for your injuries. Why would you make a third-party claim?
Suing someone else for your injuries
As stated above, there are times when it’s disadvantageous to sue your employer or company when filing for workers’ compensation benefits. Instead, you may be able to seek damages from a third party. You may believe that another company was responsible for your injuries.
For example, your company may have purchased new forklifts. Your co-worker may have been trained to use these forklifts and how to safely operate them. However, there were issues with the forklift’s brakes. When your co-worker went to use its brakes, they didn’t work and it resulted in you getting hit, causing head and spine issues.
In the above situation, you may initially believe it’s better to sue your company for purchasing the forklifts, but that would be detrimental to your workers’ comp claim. Since the manufacturer created the faulty product and you don’t work for them, they don’t have the same protection that your employer or company has. What you could do is sue the forklift manufacturer in a third-party claim and receive benefits.
Seeking legal help
Filing for workers’ compensation benefits and a third-party workers’ compensation claim can be difficult. It may benefit you to seek a law firm that is experienced in helping injured workers get the help they need.