In January 2021, Rogers | Beltran LLP obtained a $1.25 million dollar settlement on behalf of our client who suffered a permanent eye injury when an exit sign fell and hit her in the face. At the time of injury, our client was working as a custodian in a downtown Los Angeles commercial office building. Partners Damon Rogers and Andy Beltran were the handling attorneys who secured the settlement on behalf of the client.
MM v. Building Owner
Client’s Eye Ruptures When Exit Sign Falls on Her
Traditionally, a person who is injured while on the job is limited to making a no-fault claim with the workers’ compensation board and would be barred from filing a civil lawsuit for money damages.
In a workers’ compensation claim, workers are limited to recovering the costs of medical care, loss of income, and other injury-related expenses. In a civil lawsuit, an injured party can recover for pain and suffering, emotional distress, loss of enjoyment, loss of consortium, property loss, and punitive damages, in addition to claims for medical care costs and loss of income.
After thorough investigation, we discovered an exception to the work comp exclusivity rule. This meant that our client could sue in civil court in addition to being able to pursue a claim through the workers’ compensation system.
Prior to filing the lawsuit, we discovered that “Company A” owned the building where our client was injured but that her employer was owned by “Company B.” Because the building owner was not the employer, a lawsuit against the building would not be subject to workers’ compensation. Simply, when someone is injured on the job through the negligence of a third-party, then the injured worker is able to bring both a civil claim for money damages and a no-fault claim through the work comp system.
After approximately one year of intense litigation, the defense agreed to settle the case for $1,250,000. Additionally, prior to filing the lawsuit we had advised our client to simultaneously file a workers’ compensation claim. This ensured that our client received ongoing medical care and disability pay while we litigated her civil case. It also allowed her to receive additional benefits and a monetary settlement for the workers’ compensation claim as we concluded the civil case.
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If you or someone you know was injured and may have a personal injury claim, please do not hesitate to contact us. We offer a free 30-minute telephone or Zoom consultation.