Personal injury law and workers’ compensation law both pertain to people who have been injured. Although there is some overlap in cases involving third-party liability, personal injury, and workers’ compensation law are vastly different areas of legal practice.
Personal injury vs. workers’ compensation — which area of the law pertains to your specific needs? Finding answers to your questions doesn’t need to be a difficult task.
At Dugan & Associates, P.C., our Pittsburgh workers’ compensation attorneys are ready and willing to help you understand the difference between these two areas of the law and under which category your injury case may fall. Although their main focus is on helping injured workers they also handle personal injury cases, making them well-qualified to address your concerns regarding personal injury vs. workers’ compensation.
Workers’ compensation law applies to workers who are hurt on the job. As long as an employer carries workers’ compensation insurance for employees, any injured worker is eligible for benefits, regardless of whom or what caused the injury.
Workers’ compensation benefits are limited to medical expenses, partial coverage of lost wages, disability payments, and, in some cases, vocational retraining. Each of these areas of coverage is governed by very specific guidelines.
Compensation is not guaranteed, as an employer or their workers’ compensation insurance company may choose to deny coverage based on any number of factors. When this is the case, a workers’ compensation attorney can assist you in appealing the decision in an effort to receive the benefits you deserve.
Personal Injury Law
Personal injury law applies to anyone who is hurt as a result of another party’s negligence. An injured person and his or her lawyer must prove negligence occurred, that the negligence caused damages and the amount of damages that resulted from the negligent act. If negligence is proven, the injured person may be eligible to recover compensation for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering as well as other damages specific to the situation.
In some cases, it may be possible for an injured worker to pursue a personal injury lawsuit. For example, if an employer does not carry workers’ compensation insurance, an injured employee can attempt to recover compensation for losses by filing a lawsuit against the employee.
In addition, some work-related injuries are the result of a party in addition to a person’s employer. If your injury was caused by a piece of defective equipment, a sub-contractor or other accountable party, you may be able to pursue what is known as a third-party liability claim against the responsible persons.