Transtainer cranes are commonly found in Charleston ports helping to load and unload massive shipping containers. While transtainer crane operators undergo rigorous and extensive training to properly operate these heavy machines, accidents do still occur that could lead to painful and long-term injuries.
While the South Carolina workers’ compensation system is designed to protect workers, it generally prohibits injured employees from suing their employer in civil court. However, because many transtainer crane operators are independent contractors or are hired as subcontractors, they are often considered third-parties. This means it may be possible for you to file and pursue Charleston liability claims against transtainer crane operators. Reach out to a dedicated injury attorney for assistance.
Why File a Third-Party Claim?
The workers’ compensation system offers employees who suffer an injury a method to recover losses and is generally one of the only paths for workers’ financial recovery. However, when a transtainer crane operator causes an injury, there may not be a clear employer to assign to liability to.
Fortunately, South Carolina Code §42-1-550 allows an injured worker to file a personal injury lawsuit against a third party. Like a workers’ compensation claim, a third-party liability claim allows a worker to recover compensation for:
- Lost wages
In addition, while the Workers’ Compensation Act generally limits the amount of compensation an individual may receive, a third-party liability claim theoretically has no cap on the potential damages an individual could recover. Beyond just work and injury-related expenses, a third-party liability claim may allow victims to recover damages for pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, and emotional damages.
Proving Liability for an Accident in a Third-Party Liability Claim
Third-party liability claims are filed in civil court. This means that unlike what is required for workers’ compensation claims, an injured worker would have to prove that a transtainer crane operator was negligent or acted with carelessness.
Most successful legal cases rely on a plaintiff or their attorney demonstrating:
- There was a duty of care owed to the plaintiff
- The defendant breached the duty through a negligent act or omission
- The breach was the actual and proximate cause of injury
- The plaintiff suffered injury or damages
While this a stronger requirement than a simply filing a workers’ compensation claim, demonstrating these factors could lead to more compensation for the plaintiff.
Benefits of Filing A Third-Party Liability Claim Against a Transtainer Crane Operator
The workers’ compensation system applicable to Charleston was enacted so employees could recover compensation for injuries sustained in the workplace. However, a third-person liability claim is different than a workers’ compensation claim and subsequently may allow for recovery in different situations.
Filing Charleston liability claims against transtainer crane operators may allow an injured worker to fully recover from their injuries and losses. While these claims ask for a higher burden of proof, a dedicated legal representative could conduct an extensive review of your accident to help develop a strong and successful claim. Call today for a free consultation and to learn more about third-party liability claims.