I am pleased to announce that I just successfully settled a case for one of the most honorable men I have ever met. He was employed by a temporary service,who, in turn, placed him at an industrial foundry. My friend and client suffered a very significant hand injury resulting in RSD (now known as CRPS) – which is a permanent and painful condition. My client received excellent workers compensation benefits, but nothing for pain and suffering.
My client consulted with numerous attorneys who all turned the case down on a legal principle (doctrine) known as the borrowed servant/common enterprise doctrine. Essentially, the Minnesota Workers Compensation Statute bars or prevents lawsuits against the employer who hires a temporary worker.
I took the case. The first thing I noticed was a huge technicality. The Insurance Defense attorney failed to raise the defense (work comp borrowed servant) in their Answer to the complaint. Arguably, under the rules of court, if you, as a defense attorney, do not raise a defense to a lawsuit, many courts find the defense to be waived (or given up).
Next, I did substantial research and consulted with an OSHA expert. I took depositions of the President of the defendant company and his right-hand man. The defense had a hearing scheduled to dismiss my guy’s entire case (scheduled for September 11,2014). However, after doing much research, finding a technicality and knowing what answers I needed in depositions (interviews) to get around the onerous loaned servant rule, gave us an upper hand. End of story: The defendant company and their insurance company declined to move forward with their motion to dismiss, and instead, offered a very equitable sum, resulting in a very successful settlement for my friend. The moral of the story is that the attorney you hire, and his experience, makes all the difference in the world. I encourage attorneys to not summarily reject cases when, at first look,they appear not winnable.
If you have any legal questions, call attorney Richard W. Hechter at 952-920-0840