Dethlefs Pykosh & Murphy obtained a favorable result on Preliminary Objections we filed in a personal injury case. Plaintiff had initially filed against several parties for recovery of damages due to a workplace injury which occurred several years prior. However, Plaintiff had already recovered a substantial sum through a workers’ compensation action. Our attorneys successfully argued at the Preliminary Objection stage that recovery under the Workers’ Compensation Act effectively barred collection of damages through a personal injury claim. The court found that while an injured employee may bring a workers’ compensation claim or a personal injury action, he or she is barred from commencing multiple suits against an employer under these mutually exclusive legal theories.
Plaintiff also brought a loss of consortium claim against the Defendants. Pennsylvania courts have defined loss of consortium as the “impact of one spouse’s physical injuries upon the other spouse’s marital privileges and amenities…” Darr Construction v. Workers’ Compensation Appeal Board, 552 Pa. 400 (1998). Our attorneys convinced the court the exclusivity of the Workers’ Compensation Act also applied to claims for loss of consortium, and such claims cannot survive a challenge through Preliminary Objections.