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What Third Parties Can Be Responsible for Work Injuries in Florida?

In Florida, most employees are eligible to file workers’ compensation claims when they get injured on the job. But, while collecting workers’ compensation benefits can help ease the financial stress of a work injury, in many cases these benefits are not enough.

Fortunately, injured workers can also file “third-party” claims in many cases. A third-party claim is a claim against any company other than your employer. While Florida requires most employers to provide workers’ compensation coverage, it also provides employers with immunity when they meet the law’s requirements. However, third parties are not immune, and they can—and should—be held accountable when they are responsible for employees’ workplace injuries.

10 Third Parties That Can Be Responsible for Work Injuries in Florida

When might you have a third-party claim after an accident at work? Here are 10 third parties that can be responsible for work injuries in Florida:

1. The Owner of the Building Where You Work

Many workplace accidents result from premises-related hazards. If you work in an office, medical facility, warehouse, or any other building, you may be able to file a claim against the building owner after suffering an injury on the job. Slips, trips, falls and other premises-related accidents can all justify third-party claims against property owners in Florida.

2. The Owner of a Job Site

Similarly, if you work on job sites rather than going to the same building every day, you could have a claim against the job site owner in the event of an on-the-job accident. Injured workers can file claims against real estate developers, homeowners, businesses and other job site owners.

3. The Facility’s Cleaning Company

Many commercial property owners hire cleaning companies to take care of their premises. If you slipped and fell on a recently-cleaned floor (or in an area that should have been cleaned but wasn’t), the facility’s cleaning company could be fully liable for your injury-related costs and non-financial losses.

4. The Facility’s Maintenance Company

Maintenance companies can be held liable for premises-related accidents in some cases as well. If you work in a building and the property owner hired a maintenance company that performed negligent work on a stairwell, elevator, escalator, door or any other part of the property, you should speak with a lawyer about filing a claim against the facility’s maintenance company.

5. A Negligent Driver’s Insurance Company

If you were seriously or permanently injured while driving for work (or driving on your way to or from work), you have the same legal rights as you would in any other car accident scenario. This means that you can—and should—file a claim under the at-fault driver’s insurance policy. While bodily injury liability (BIL) insurance is not mandatory in Florida, many drivers opt to purchase this coverage. If the at-fault driver has insurance, you should work with a lawyer to seek the maximum coverage available.

6. A Negligent Driver’s Employer

If the driver who hit you was also working at the time of the accident, you may have a claim against the driver’s employer. While you typically can’t sue your own employer for a job-related injury in Florida, you can sue someone else’s employer if that person is responsible for your injuries. This is true whether you are injured in a vehicle-on-vehicle collision or you get hit by a negligent driver while walking in a parking lot or on a job site.

7. A Furniture or Electronics Manufacturer

Employees who work in offices, warehouses and other facilities can suffer injuries due to furniture defects in various circumstances. For example, one of the most common types of furniture-related accidents in the workplace involves large pieces of furniture such as shelves and filing cabinets tipping over because they were not designed appropriately. Accidents involving defective electronics in the workplace are fairly common as well.

8. A Tool or Equipment Manufacturer

Tool and equipment defects are also common causes of work-related injuries. If you were injured by a defective hand tool, power tool, forklift, or piece of industrial or heavy machinery, the manufacturer could be liable for your medical expenses, loss of earnings, pain and suffering, and other present and future losses.

9. A Contractor or Subcontractor

If you work at a job site with contractors or subcontractors, you can file a third-party claim in the event that one of these companies’ employees causes you to suffer a job-related injury. This scenario is most common on construction sites. For example, if you are a painter and you get injured by an electrical or HVAC subcontractor, you may be able to hire a lawyer to pursue a third-party claim for full compensation.

10. Another Third Party

Injured employees in Florida can file third-party claims in a wide range of other circumstances as well. As an employee, many of the risks you face on a daily basis are unique to your occupation and the location (or locations) where you work. For example, depending on your job, other third parties that could be responsible for your injury-related losses include:

  • A boat manufacturer or negligent boater (if you work in a maritime occupation)
  • A pharmaceutical manufacturer (if you work in healthcare)
  • A chemical or material manufacturer (if you work in cleaning, construction or an industrial occupation)
  • A vehicle manufacturer (if you are injured in a car, truck or van accident caused by a vehicle defect)
  • Uber or Lyft’s insurance company (if you get hit by a rideshare driver while driving for work)

Discuss Your Legal Rights with a Workers’ Compensation Lawyer in Fort Lauderdale

Do you need to know more about filing a third-party claim after a job-related accident in Florida? If so, we strongly encourage you to speak with one of our lawyers right away. For a free, no-obligation consultation with a workers’ compensation lawyer at Maus Law Firm in Fort Lauderdale, call 954-784-6310 or tell us how we can contact you online now.


Client Testimonial

"Even when I was not able to get a physician to follow up with me for a broken bone following a car accident, the Maus firm, in particular Rocio, worked hard on my behalf and reached a good settlement for me. This was accomplished long distance, as the accident happened in Florida and I live in Indiana. They worked on my case for 3 years and did not give up."

Posted By: Debra Murray

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