Ohio Workers Compensation and Third-Party Injury Claims After an Accident
In general, when you are in an accident while in the scope of your employment, the typical recourse is to make a workers compensation claim. These workers compensation claims are first party claims against the employer. The employer pays premiums to the workers compensation fund to cover this liability.
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There are certain cases, however, where a third party may have caused the accident and these types of injury lawsuits can be very complex. It is advisable to speak with an injury lawyer if a third-party caused your injury. The injury victims typically have to deal with two parties rather than one in these types of cases. For example: If you are in a company owned vehicle which is stopped at a red light and a third party vehicle crashes into the back end of the company vehicle causing you serious injuries, what would your options be to cover your injuries and other losses?
What Covers My Injury?
Initially, you would need to look into making a claim with the Ohio Bureau of Workers Compensation (BWC). This claim would allow you to receive a portion of your lost wages and receive medical treatment. You could also make a claim against a third party who caused the accident under certain circumstances and their insurance company would then step into the shoes of their insured and handle the claim. In addition to these claims, you could look to your own insurance company for medical payments recovery or uninsured/underinsured coverage. Sometimes, the injured victim may have two to three claims involved in these types of cases.
You must be aware that any compensation paid to you by the BWC will need to be reimbursed out of either a settlement or jury verdict. The BWC has a statutory legal right of reimbursement for any compensation it pays you. If you don’t reimburse it, you could open yourself up to a lawsuit and be legally responsible for a judgment in that amount. Initially, the BWC should pay for medical care and lost wages. Upon settlement with the negligent driver’s insurance company, you would reimburse BWC from the proceeds. As you can see, this is a complex area of the law. It is imperative that you speak with an experienced personal injury attorney who can advise you as to all your options.
Dennis P. Sawan
Licensed in Ohio and Georgia
Christopher A. Sawan
Licensed in Ohio and Michigan