Can I File Both a Workers’ Comp Claim and a Personal Injury Claim?
Many people wonder if they can file both a workers’ comp and personal injury claim after a work-related car accident. Determining what you’re entitled to and the best course of action can be complicated.
While every case is different, you typically don’t have to choose between filing a workers’ comp claim and a personal injury claim. In other words, even if you receive workers’ comp benefits from your employer, you may still have the right to pursue compensation from the driver who caused your accident through a personal injury claim.
For example, let’s say you’re making a delivery for the benefit of your employer and you’re hit head on by another driver who was clearly at fault. You can potentially receive workers’ comp benefits through your employer and file a car accident claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance company.
However, it’s important to keep in mind that if you start receiving workers’ comp benefits, your employer’s insurance carrier may have a right of subrogation for any compensation you get from third parties. This means that if, on top of your workers’ comp benefits, you later win a car accident settlement from the other driver, your employer’s insurance company may have a right to part of your settlement for any “doubly recovered benefits.” However, you may be able to get a reduction for the workers’ compensation subrogation interest benefits paid to you.
With this in mind, you may be wondering why you should even go to the trouble of filing a personal injury claim if your employer’s insurance company is just going to take some of that money back.
That’s a great question!
Usually, workers’ comp covers basic needs like lost wages and medical bills but doesn’t offer an injured person compensation for non-economic damages (pain and suffering). These damages can be some of the most substantial losses a car accident victim experiences. A personal injury claim can provide the compensation you deserve and need for your pain and suffering.