Am I Covered by Worker’s Compensation?
By Brenner Spiller & Archer, LLP | January 2, 2018
Injuries can happen anywhere and at any time. Luckily, if your injury arises from your workplace, your medical bills and lost wages may be compensated by your employer. The rules can be unclear, however, so here’s a quick rundown of who can be covered by workers’ compensation.
What It Is
Workers’ compensation (sometimes called workmans’ comp) is a payment from your employer in the event that you are injured or become ill while doing your job. The payment is used to cover lost wages (during time when you are unable to perform your job), hospital and medical expenses, rehabilitation, retraining, or permanency awards.
Workers’ compensation is different than a lawsuit against your employer, and if desired or advised to by a lawyer, you can file a lawsuit instead of accepting compensation.
Who Can Receive Compensation
Coverage can vary from job to job, and some employers aren’t required to provide worker’s compensation at all. Most of the time, compensation is applicable, even if you were at fault, when:
- you are a hired employee of the company, and
- your injury is the result of your employment.
Your injury or illness doesn’t need to take place inside your physical place of work, either. If you have an accident while running work-related errands, on a business trip, or at a business-related event, you may be covered.
Injuries also don’t have to be a one-time accident. Gradual damages can be covered, such as repetitive back strain from lifting without appropriate equipment, or lung disease from years of breathing unhealthy air.
When Workers’ Compensation is Not Applicable
Not every accident or employee is covered. Compensation benefits depend on:
- The state
- Type of work being performed
- Type of business
- Type of worker (seasonal, casual, agricultural, etc.)
Employees will also likely not be covered if they are intoxicated, committing a crime, purposefully injuring themselves, or violating company policy.
If you are accidentally injured or become ill while at work, it’s your right to continue to receive income while you can’t work and receive payment for your medical bills. Call us today if you or someone you know has been injured at work to see if you can receive workers’ compensation.