General Counsel to the Maryland Troopers’ Association
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Counsel on more than 250 appeals in State and Federal Courts
Multiple cases in the Supreme Court of the United States
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This month seems to be a good time to explain the definition of third-party liability in workers’ compensation.
Workers’ comp is no-fault. This means the employer/insurer pays for the injuries of a an injured worker, simply because he or she was hurt at work in an accidental injury arising in the course of his or her employment. It doesn’t matter whose fault. If it’s the employers fault they pay. If it’s someone else’s fault, they pay. If it’s no one’s fault, they pay. (It’s a little more complicated than this – speak to a workers’ compensation lawyer for details relating to your case.)
But what if someone else is to blame for your on-the-job injury? What if you are driving for work and hit by someone else on the road? Do you get workers’ comp or do you sue the negligent driver? The answer is both. The negligent driver is the third-party and you are likely entitled to compensation from both, assuming both cases can be proven.
Below is a sampling of Warnken, LLC’s workers’ compensation cases for which compensation was awarded in September. You will note that some cases involve motor vehicle accidents. These are the kind of cases that might have third-party liability. Therefore, the recovery amounts below might only be a fraction of the compensation actually received.
- Injury: Left wrist fracture and left foot sprain
- Body Part: Left wrist and left foot
- Amount: $1,365.00
- Claimant sustained injury years ago and received a PPD award. Claimant reopened the workers’ compensation case for worsening of condition after diagnostic testing. Claimant remains in pre-injury employment.
- Injury: intra-articular distal radius fracture
- Body Part: Left wrist
- Amount: $1,215.00
- Claimant sustained injury 3 years ago and reopened claim for worsening of condition. He received conservative treatment in the form of physical therapy since the award for permanency.
- Injury: TMJ
- Body Part: Jaw
- Amount: $4,000.00
- Claimant received a permanency award, but the Commission denied causation for the injury to the jaw. As a result, an appeal was filed and the case was settled with the inclusion of payment of medical bills related to the jaw.
- Injury: Cervical and lumbar strains
- Body Part: Neck & Back
- Amount: $19,800.00
- Claimant was rear-ended by another vehicle while at work as a police officer. He underwent physical therapy and injection treatments to the neck and the back. He also sustained a head injury, for which he completely recovered. He was able to return to his pre-injury employment.
- Injury: Right meniscal tear and left knee strain
- Body Part: Bilateral knees
- Amount: $40,000.00
- Claimant was injured when he was involved in a motor vehicle accident. He underwent surgical repair for a right meniscal tear, followed by physical therapy and conservative treatment. He was unable to return to pre-injury employment.
- Injury: Rotator Cuff Tear and biceps tendon tear
- Body Part: Right shoulder
- Amount: $33,300.00
- Claimant sustained injury to his right shoulder when he fell 10 feet off of a ladder. He sustained a rotator and biceps tendon tear. He was treated with surgery, physical therapy, and injections. He was able to return to pre-injury employment.
- Injury: Chondromalacia in the inferior aspect of the patella; shallow trochlear groove of the distal femur with elongation of the lateral facet of the patella
- Body Part: Left knee
- Amount: $12,00.00
- Claimant was injured when a patient pushed onto her knee causing injury. She had surgical repair and physical therapy. She was able to return to pre-injury employment.
- Injury: Right knee and ankle sprains
- Body Part: Right knee and ankle
- Amount: $12,000
- Claimant was injured when assaulted at work by a patient and thrown to the ground. Claimant treated conservatively with physical therapy and bracing.
Warnken, LLC Attorneys At Law
Warnken, LLC started more than 20 years ago. The senior member of the firm, Byron L. Warnken, Esq., has been an attorney for more than 35 years. He is also a full-time law professor at the University of Baltimore School of Law. Warnken teaches various criminal law related classes. In the past, he taught issues in law enforcement. From his classes, came his practice. In the beginning, being a scholar meant interesting specialty litigation at the appellate level. Things grew from there.
Warnken, LLC has handled more than 1300 criminal cases in more than 20 years of practice. This includes all phases of criminal litigation, including trial work and post-verdict work. Post-verdict means criminal appeals, post conviction, sentencing and other collateral review. Professor Byron L. Warnken teaches criminal law and constitutional criminal procedure. He is also the author of Maryland Criminal Procedure, a 1940-page three-volume treatise on the subject.
Warnken, LLC’s civil litigation practice handles personal injury cases and workers’ compensation appeals. However, through of-counsel relationships, we also handle truck accidents, negligence, wrongful death, catastrophic personal injury, medical malpractice, and other injuries or disputes.
Workers’ compensation is by far the fastest growing practice area at Warnken, LLC. Our comp practice is likely the fastest growing in the state. Warnken, LLC had less than 20 comp files at any given time a few years ago. Today there are more than 250.
Our comp practice grew from serving law enforcement. Being one of the most dangerous jobs, police officers and other public safety employees often need counsel for workplace injuries. In order to serve our existing clients, we gained the expertise.
For more than 15 years, Warnken, LLC has been general counsel to the Maryland Troopers Association. We handle administrative discipline, trial boards, disability retirement, grievances, and generally anything else active or retired law enforcement personnel face. We take great pride in the work.