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Third-Party Injury Claims and Workers’ Compensation Liens

If you suffered an injury on the job in Florida, you are likely entitled to workers’ compensation. These benefits can help alleviate the economic burden of lost wages and medical expenses associated with your injury. Generally, a worker’s compensation claim is the only avenue for an injured worker to receive compensation. However, in some cases, your injury may have been caused by a third party — someone who is not your employer or a co-worker. For example, if you are making a delivery for your employer and are in a car accident with a third party, you may be able to file a personal injury suit against the other driver in addition to a claim for workers’ compensation.

Third-party injury claims, unlike workers’ compensation claims, require proof that another person was at fault for the accident that resulted in injuries. Third-party injury claims can lead to awards of greater damages. For example, while both actions will seek reimbursement for lost wages and medical bills, in a third-party suit you may receive damages for pain and suffering and loss of consortium.

If you suffered an injury at work that was at least partly caused by a third party’s negligence, a workers’ compensation attorney can play an indispensable role. Your attorney can:

  • Investigate, prepare and file your workers’ compensation claim
  • Negotiate with your employer and its insurer
  • Investigate, prepare and file a third-party lawsuit
  • Negotiate with the negligent third-party’s insurer

If you recover damages from a third-party and also receive workers’ compensation benefits, your employer and insurer will have a workers’ compensation lien against any money you received from your third-party injury claim. The lien allows the workers’ compensation insurer to recoup some or all of the money they paid out in your behalf. However, workers’ compensation liens are subject to negotiation. Your workers’ compensation or personal injury attorney may be able to negotiate a lower lien amount, allowing you to keep more of your third-party settlement.

At Vassallo, Bilotta & Davis in West Palm Beach and Stuart, we have a team of experienced Florida attorneys dedicated to helping injured workers, recover the workers’ compensation benefits they deserve. Call our office at 561-471-2800 or contact us online today for a consultation.

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Our Office
  • West Palm Beach Office
    2001 Palm Beach Lakes Blvd.
    Suite 204
    West Palm Beach, Florida 33409
    Phone: 561-471-2800
    Fax: 561-471-2818
  • Stuart Office
    50 E. Ocean Blvd.
    Stuart, Florida 34994
    Phone: 772-221-8262
Verdicts & Settlements
  • "$3,200,000 -- Motorcycle crash causing abdominal injuries* Defendant who was driving a van which struck our client only had $10,000 insurance coverage. Due to the failure of the insurer to timely resolve the case we obtained a settlement of 3.2 million."

  • "$2,156,249 -- Slip & fall causing low back injuries* Defendant grocery store put out wet floor signs due to a leaking freezer. Client fell while walking down the aisle. Defendant claimed client was 100% at fault. A jury found no responsibility on the client and awarded over 2.1 million in damages."

  • "$1,550,000 -- Tractor Trailor crash causing back injuries * Defendant trucking company claimed their driver was not at fault for a crash on I-95 and blamed a phantom vehicle After a trial the jury awarded our client over 1.5 million in damages."

  • "$1,417,937 -- Car crash causing injuries to an elderly couple.* Defendant claimed the husband who was 83 years old violated defendant's right of way. After a trial the jury awarded the husband and wife over 1.4 million."

  • "$1,000,000 -- Full-size Pickup Truck striking the back of client's car* Defendant denied liability claiming they were pushed from behind into our client. The case settled after a 2 week trial, while the jury was out deliberating."