Workers Compensation: Third Party Claims
Missouri Workers Compensation Attorney
Roskin & Hoffmann, LLC
If you are injured on the job, you may be able to bring a third party claim in addition to a regular workers compensation claim, thus increasing your potential recovery.
If you have been injured while at work you are entitled to workers compensation benefits for lost wages and medical expenses. In certain cases you may also pursue third-party claims against other negligent parties, such as a co-worker, after a workplace accident. At Roskin & Hoffmann, LLC our experienced workers compensation attorneys will not only help to recover your workers compensation benefits, but we will also pursue any additional claims against third parties. In cases where accidents result from negligent third parties, we may be able to collect additional damages including pain and suffering and monetary amounts for any additional personal losses you have suffered through.
Going Beyond Workers Compensation: Third Party Case Law
While Missouri workers compensation case law protects the employer from common law liability for breach of their duty to provide a safe workplace, this common law protection generally does not extend to third parties. Burns v. Smith, 214 S.W.3d 335, 337-338 (Mo. Banc 2007). In instances where a co-worker performed a negligent act that is considered something “extra” outside the employer’s duty to maintain a reasonably safe workplace, Missouri Courts have held that the injured employee may sue the co-employee whom committed the negligent act. State ex rel. Badami v. Gaertner, 630 S.W.2d 175, 177 (Mo.App.1982) (en banc). For example, if a supervisor intentionally directs another employee to undertake an activity that the supervisor could reasonably foresee resulting in a particularly dangerous event, the Courts have allowed the injured employee to sue the supervisor. Id.
This test was applied in the Supreme Court case of Burns v. Smith, where a supervisor negligently applied a weld to a corroded water pressure tank then directed an employee to “run till it blows”. Burns, 214 S.W.3d at 336, 337. Subsequently, the employee was severely injured when the water pressure tank exploded. Id. At 337. In this case, the Court stated that the “something more” test was met where the supervisor’s affirmative act created an “additional danger beyond that normally faced in the job-specific work environment”. Id. at 338. Where the “something more” test is met, workers’ compensation is not the injured employee’s exclusive remedy for injuries sustained at the workplace and courts have proper subject matter jurisdiction to hear such matters. Id.
Contact an Experienced Workers Compensation Lawyer
The St. Louis Workers Compensation Lawyers at Roskin & Hoffmann, LLC have nearly 50 years of combined Work Comp experience and we have handled some of the most complex Workers Comp cases throughout Missouri. If you have been injured at work or have questions regarding third party claims, call our knowledgeable attorneys at (314) 821-9013 or send us a Workers Compensation question. We look forward to helping you. All communications are returned promptly.
Workers Compensation Lawyers at Roskin & Hoffmann, LLC based in St. Louis, Missouri have nearly 50 combined years of work comp experience. Learn more about Third Party Claims.