Do you qualify for workers’ compensation?
I was asked this question this week on one of my radio segments. What happens if you’re hurt on the job or you’re a worker and are hurt in an ordinary situation, can you qualify for workers’ comp? Do you get it if you’re driving to work? Or if you’re hurt in the work parking lot? These questions come up all the time. The answer can be complex because workers’ compensation can be complex.
Workers’ Comp can be complex
The law says in order to get workers’ compensation your injury has to arise out of and in the course of your employment. So if the company pays for your parking, it’s probably covered. If you’re paid to drive back and forth and drive places for your work you’re probably covered.
In either case though, it’s probably also going to be litigated meaning you’re going to need a lawyer.
You have an obligation to tell your employer within thirty (30) days if you get hurt in the course of your job. You have to put them on notice even if they say no to your claim, you have to put them on notice. It’s a very short time-frame you have. It sometimes can be excused when argued, but it is indeed something you should do. A lot of times people want to sue their employer because bad things have happened on the job site. There has to be very good cause to sue your employer or fellow employee(s). On a construction site, that’s different – construction workers are protected by special laws. If you’re an injured construction worker you DEFINITELY need an attorney because construction law (labor law) is some of the most complex law that exists. You definitely can’t go it alone.
Different examples of things going wrong
A defective product at your employer’s place of business could be the basis of a lawsuit that goes beyond a workers’ compensation claim. If you’re driving for your job and someone hits you, that’s another example. So there ARE situations where someone else might be responsible that you could have a personal injury lawsuit. Most workers’ compensation claims are due to an injury that’s simply occurred, not due to someone else’s negligence. Falling in a parking lot, unless it’s highly unusual circumstances, you CAN be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits but you can’t typically sue for a personal injury in that scenario. It can be a complicated process.
What if you have more than one job?
Workers’ compensation allocates the degree of disability on all your jobs. If you have a part time job that you can still do the work for, but not work for your other full time job that goes beyond your present limitations, you can still work your part time job. Workers’ comp will pay you a percentage of what your disability is, depending. You can’t do your regular job but perhaps there’s some work your present employer can give you that you CAN do. Depending on the limitations of what your doctors have stated – determines your ability to participate at different levels.
You’re obligated to do that work if your present employer has it for you.
If your present employer doesn’t have that work for you, you’re still obligated to look for other light duty work that you might be able to execute. See? There’s a reason why you need a lawyer for this process because the rules get complicated. They cut you off, they use words not commonly used, there are many different deadlines and circumstances that dictate certain actions. Unless you practice this everyday, there’s no way you could possibly know all the in’s and out’s. We have part of our team here at Stanley Law specifically dedicated to workers’ compensation and they’re incredibly successful at what they do. They care deeply about representing injured workers and getting you the compensation you deserve for the maximum awards possible.
Stanley Law Offices represents both personal injury victims as well as injured
workers with workers’ compensation claims. If you have questions you can call 1-800-608-3333. You can also email Joe@StanleyLawOffices.com with your questions or call in to any one of Joe’s numerous radio show segments with your question as well.