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When Workers’ Compensation is Not Enough

Worker CallingInjuries happen daily on worksites across the state of California. Individuals that are especially prone to workplace injuries include truck drivers, agricultural workers, and roofers. Workplace accidents can cause a variety of injuries, some of which can result in long-term or even permanent disabilities and disfigurement. Just as there are a variety of accident types, there can be a number of causes for workplace injuries. While some workplace injuries are caused by the carelessness of either the employee or his or her employer, sometimes a workplace accident is caused by someone else’s carelessness or negligence.

For instance:

  • A roofer may suffer a fall because of a defective safety harness;
  • A worker may be crushed or suffer serious injuries when he or she is hit by heavy machinery operated by another company; or
  • Electric lines or plumbing that is installed improperly can cause electrocution or injury to other workers on a job site.

While workers’ compensation benefits are available to California workers who are injured or become ill while on the job, sometimes these benefits may not be sufficient to meet all of the expenses and losses associated with a workplace incident. What can an injured worker do when workers’ compensation benefits are not enough?

Options for Injured Workers

When your employer’s carelessness or your own negligence results in your work-related injury or illness, oftentimes workers’ compensation benefits are all that are available to you. But when a third party (that is, someone other than your employer or yourself) is careless and this carelessness causes your injury, either you or your employer can bring a lawsuit against that third-party and seek compensation above and beyond your workers’ compensation benefits. This can reimburse you for losses that you might not be fully compensated for through workers’ compensation, such as:

  • Pain and suffering;
  • Permanent disability or disfigurement;
  • Lost future wages; and
  • Loss of enjoyment of life.
How is a Third-Party Action Different than Workers’ Compensation?

Unlike a workers’ compensation claim, which pays benefits if you are injured or become ill while on the job (regardless of who is at fault), you can only receive compensation through a third-party lawsuit if you prove that a third party acted carelessly and that the third party’s careless actions caused or contributed to your injuries. This usually requires the assistance of a skilled and knowledgeable attorney and may require expert witnesses in addition to testimony from those who saw the incident.

Contact Corsiglia, McMahon & Allard, L.L.P. for Help

When you have been injured on the job due to someone else’s carelessness, we at Corsiglia, McMahon & Allard, L.L.P. are ready to help you recover the compensation you deserve. We offer free consultations to injured workers in and around the San Jose area. During your free consultation, we will review the facts of your injury incident, advise you of the compensation available to you, and formulate a strategy to help you recover the compensation you need.  Contact our San Jose workplace injury attorneys today at (408) 289-1417.

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I suffered a severe spinal injury while working as a farm mechanic in the Salinas Valley. The attorneys -Tim McMahon and Mark Sigala were fantastic from the beginning. They fought for me over 3 long years and in the end, we won a difficult liability case against the farm company who was using dangerous equipment. The defendants in the case tried everything to put the blame on me and even claimed I was their employee in order to avoid civil responsibility. Tim and Mark never gave up on me and my case. I cannot recommend them highly enough. They are fighters. Adrian A.
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