As the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) explains, time spent commuting to work is not considered paid time – time in which you are on the clock and earning a wage. This factor is crucial in determining when workers’ compensation coverage applies.
Workers’ compensation is no-fault insurance that covers injuries and illnesses when they occur at work or in connection with your job duties. Therefore, unless you are clocked in, it is likely that workers’ compensation does not cover you to and from work. However, if you suffered injuries on the way to work or during the drive home, there are other options for seeking compensation.
In This Article
When Does Workers’ Compensation Coverage Apply?
Workers’ compensation coverage applies to injuries that occur in the workplace and injuries or illnesses that develop because of your job duties, such as carpal tunnel. Since this is a form of no-fault insurance, you do not have to prove that your employer or anyone else was liable.
However, there are circumstances in which the insurance company could deem you ineligible for benefits. These generally include when there is evidence that:
- Your injuries developed outside of your work-related duties.
- You caused your injuries due to wanton recklessness.
- You caused your injuries while intoxicated at work.
Does Workers’ Compensation Cover Any Work-Related Travel?
Though injuries that occur while commuting to and from work do not qualify for coverage, this is not true for all travel. The DOL specifies that travel during work hours is compensable. Therefore, you could be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits if you suffered injuries while traveling for work. Examples include jobs that involve:
- Making deliveries
- Transporting passengers
- Attending meetings outside the office on company time
- Visiting other work sites
For a legal consultation, call 828.286.3866
What Does Workers’ Compensation Cover?
Workers’ compensation covers certain expenses and financial losses related to your work injuries. In general, you can expect to receive compensation for:
- Doctor’s visits
- Consultations with specialists
- Travel to your medical appointments
- Treatment and prescriptions
- A certain percentage of your weekly wages
The exact amount you qualify to receive will depend on the specifics of your treatment, the length of your recovery, and your state’s benefit schedules.
How Can a Workers’ Compensation Attorney Help Me if I Was Injured at Work?
Our workers’ compensation lawyers regularly represent applicants. We can help you determine if you qualify for benefits after suffering injuries. If you do, our team will:
- Prepare your application
- Keep you on track to meet all necessary filing deadlines
- Review the circumstances of your injuries
- Estimate the amount of benefits you qualify to receive
- Represent you in any workers’ compensation hearings
Our firm can help you understand your rights under workers’ compensation, as well as your right to seek compensation through other means, in some cases.
What Should I Do If I Was Injured During My Commute to or From Work?
Even if workers’ compensation does not cover you to and from work, you could still recover damages for commute-related injuries. This is because personal injury laws allow victims to hold other parties financially responsible for causing them harm.
Therefore, you could file a claim or lawsuit if a reckless driver, pedestrian, or other individual or entity caused your injuries. Injuries that occur during the morning or afternoon commute are not uncommon, as these are widely known as some of the most high-traffic times.
A Lawyer Can Also Help with Your Commute-Related Injury Case
Our firm represents both workers’ compensation and personal injury clients seeking coverage for their expenses and losses. If you retain us, one of our personal injury attorneys could:
- Identify the liable party or parties
- Prepare a case to present to the insurance company
- Calculate your economic and non-economic damages
- Negotiate for a settlement to cover each of your expenses and losses
- Represent and advocate for you at trial
You won’t have to fight the insurance companies or stand up in court on your own. Our attorneys provide compassion, support, and guidance every step of the way.
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Contact Our Office Today to Discuss Your Legal Options for Compensation
Whether you plan to file a workers’ compensation claim or a personal injury claim, our team is here to help. Tell us about the circumstances of your or your loved one’s injuries so we can discuss your options for seeking compensation. In some cases, you may qualify to file both of these claims.
Our consultations are free, and there is no obligation to work with us – we want you to consider our services and choose the best representation for you and your family. Call now to speak with a member of Farmer & Morris Law, PLLC, and take your first step toward financial recovery: (828) 286-3866.