Maryland's workers' compensation laws prohibit injured workers from directly suing their employer for injuries suffered in workplace accidents. Because of that restriction, many Maryland industrial workers wrongly believe that they can only receive workers' compensation benefits to help pay for expenses related to their injuries.
The truth of the matter is that Maryland workers have no restrictions when it comes to suing third-parties who might have contributed to their workplace accidents. It is generally accepted legal theory that the manufacturer of a product has a duty to the consumer to ensure that their products are not unreasonably dangerous under normal use. Poorly shielded sawblades, incorrectly wired electrical panels and improperly welded metal scaffolding are all examples of defective products that might give rise to a third-party lawsuit.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration calls them the "fatal four". Falls, being struck by objects, electrocutions and being caught in between objects are the top killers in construction-related industries. Although these types of accidents killed nearly 4,000 workers in 2013, it's important to remember that some victims managed to survive these incidents with serious injuries. It's logical to assume that at least some of those accidents were caused by defective or dangerous industrial equipment.
If you have been injured in an industrial workplace accident, you should act quickly to preserve your claims. Your Maryland workers' compensation attorney can help you assess the true value of your case. Depending on the circumstances of your workplace accident, you may be able to recover compensation from a negligent third-party. Although no outcome can be guaranteed, a substantial award from a third-party lawsuit can help you overcome your injuries and secure your future.