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Plaintiff Who Sustains A “Grave Injury” Avoid The Worker’s Compensation Bar To Recovery

Friday, January 8, 2016

The Law Office of Louis Grandelli recently litigated a case where a plaintiff was injured due to an unsafe worksite, and we were able to prove that the plaintiff had a viable third-party claim against his employer. The injured worker was performing his normal duties at his worksite, when he fell head first into a hole that had been improperly excavated in his work area by a construction company, causing him to sustain a brain injury.

As a result of the accident, the plaintiff sustained multiple fractures to his skull, and bleeding to the brain. After being hospitalized for approximately three weeks, the plaintiff continued with cognitive therapy to alleviate his symptoms. Unfortunately, the injured plaintiff was never able to return to work, and was determined to be totally disabled by the Social Security Administration.

Although a worker is generally barred from seeking recovery against his employer, we were able to demonstrate that the plaintiff sustained a “grave injury” under the Worker’s Compensation Law, thereby qualifying for one of the exceptions to the bar on recoveries against an injured party’s own employer. As a result, we were able to pressure the plaintiff’s employer to contribute to a settlement which amounted to the full insurance proceeds available prior to trial.

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