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What Do You Think: May Worker Struck by Car in Parking Lot Sue for Personal Injury?

13 Jul, 2023 Chris Parker

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Atlanta, GA ( – Generally, Georgia’s exclusivity provision prevents an employee from suing a coworker for negligence if the injury occurred while the coworker was acting in the course of employment.

But what if the injury occurs in the employer’s parking lot. A Georgia appeals court addressed that issue when a coworker who was late to work struck an employee as he prepared to leaving the parking lot.

At 7:10 a.m. one September morning, an employee getting ready to leave work. He had finished his shift and was putting his bag in the back of his truck when a car struck him.

The driver of the car worked for the same employer and was running late for his shift, which started at 7 a.m.

The employee obtained workers' compensation benefits for his resulting injuries. He then filed a negligence lawsuit.

The court dismissed the case on the grounds that the exclusivity provision of the workers’ compensation act barred the lawsuit. The worker then appealed, arguing that his coworker was not acting in the course of employment at the time of the accident because he was violating a company policy prohibiting workers from showing up late to work.

When an injury falls under the WCA, the exclusivity provision bars the injured employee from recovering in tort against the employer or a coworker. To fall under the act, however, the injury must occur in the course of employment.

Was the coworker acting in the course of employment?

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