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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2009

    Default WC Lein on Third Party Lawsuit

    What is Michigan law regarding how much the WC lien can take from your third party lawsuit settlement when the settlement amount is less than the WC insurer's lien?

    AND.. Shouldn't the lawyer representing me have filed something so that my wife is entitled to a percentage of this third party settlement which comes before any lein is applied?

    The lawyer representing me in this case is also representing the WC insurer, isn't that unlawful as a conflict of interest?

    Should I get my own legal representation? Although I have no money to pay fee's and such, and this other lawyer has been paid upfront by the WC insurer.

    Is this legal? what are my options?

    Thank you

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2007

    Default Re: WC Lein on Third Party Lawsuit

    I'd have to search the MI statues on that one, But typically is't not a WC rule.

    When there is a 3rd party, the IW still files a claim for benefits under the ER plan for industrial injury.
    The ER provides the benefits...wage loss, medical treatment etc.
    As you cannot receive/be paid benefits from 2 parties for the same loss at the same time, the ER/IC has subrogation rights to recover any benefits they have provided.
    Your/IW interest in the 3rd party action would be award for past/future loss of earnings, pain and suffering, possibly punitive damages. Those -would not be open to the ER/ WC IC.

    The IC atty representing you in the 3rd party case is repping you and your ER/IC to be sure the max benefits are recovered... not a conflict there, but of course the atty should not be repping you in the comp claim.

    If you have your own WC atty, and he is handling the PI portion, the ER/IC would/could be liable for a portion of your atty fees in recovery against the 3rd party.

    You can and maybe should get your own atty for the comp claim. There would be no fee for that and none unless there is an award/-settlement.

    Once the PI claim- settles, the WC carrier is still providing benefits... further wage loss, and medical to the injury. Those won't stop until/unless you cash out the comp claim.
    settlement when the settlement amount is less than the WC insurer's lien?
    It wouldn't be all that unusual for the coverage limitations in the 3rd party, is it MVA ?... to be less than the amount of benefits...medical treatment especially to be less than the carriers lien.
    MVA coverage has limitations, WC coverage doesn't.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2009

    Default Re: WC Lein on Third Party Lawsuit

    The workmans comp claim has already been settled. They don't pay me anything anymore, nor do they take care of me medically. I ended up with a surgery and a small settlement amount.

    Now, the third party suit that they are pressuring me into settling... If that settlement is written so that the amount or a percentage of the settlement amount is written as such that it is for future wage loss and/or pain and suffering *as I am totally disabled now* Is that percentage safe from the workmans comp insurer's lien? For instance, say the settlement is 100k and the workmans comp insurer has a 200k lein. The WCI say's I can have 10k, and they will take 90k, and out of my 10k I pay 33 1/3% to the lawyer. Now, if it is written such that 50% of the 100k is for future wage loss and/or pain and suffering, then is that 50% of the 100k safe from the WCI's lien?

    I am just so sick of me and my family getting the short end of the stick and I truly feel with them pressuring me that someone is awry here and they are trying to screw me yet again. Hope you or someone can get back to me asap on this as I need to know. Thanks

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2008

    Default Re: WC Lein on Third Party Lawsuit

    To answer your original question, Ive heard that married people will list their spouse on the third party suits. Loss of consortuim (sp?) I think basically it means sex and companionship they have lost out on because of the injury
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