Chapter 97 of the North Carolina General Statutes is the Workers’ Compensation Act. This law controls all aspects of workers’ compensation claims. When an employee is entitled to workers’ compensation benefits for an on-the-job injury and the injury was caused by a third-party, the injured employee may have a claim against the third-party in addition to a workers’ compensation claim. The “third party” is a person who is not associated with the employee’s job. One of the most common on-the-job injuries that are caused by a third party occurs when the employee is injured by someone else’s negligent driving. This is a brief overview of the laws governing the interplay of third-party claims when there is a workers’ compensation claim.
A few weeks ago I posted about Medicare Liens and what people who suffer an injury as the result of someone else’s negligence need to be on the lookout for if they have Medicare. Similar to Medicare, if a person has Medicaid and suffers an injury, Medicaid may be entitled to a lien on any proceeds received by the person. This lien extends to payments for medical expenses that Medicaid has made on behalf of the person for medical services related to the injury.
When a person suffers a personal injury, such as a car accident, that was caused by the negligence of someone else, the injured person may be entitled to collect monetary compensation for medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, or other losses. Settling an injury claim has never been more difficult. Over the past several years, various entities have begun claiming liens or rights of reimbursement on injury settlements or recoveries. These entities will not do anything to assist in the recovery of the funds. Instead, they want the injured person or his/her attorney to do all the work and then pay them back in the end. These various entities can include Medicare, Medicaid, or even the person’s health insurance company. Over the next few weeks, we will look at these different entities and why it is important to be aware of them when settling or receiving compensation for a personal injury claim.