Workers’ compensation doesn’t only cover workers that have suffered a personal injury at work. If you have been involved or injured in a car accident while on the clock, it is very important that you understand all of your legal rights concerning workers’ compensation.
Car Accident and Workers; Compensation
When considering whether or not you qualify for worker’s compensation following a car accident, you’ll need to take a few things into consideration:
1. Were You at Work?
While the specific rules of workers’ compensation can differ, if the car accident occurred while you were working, you should be able to receive benefits. These benefits cover an employees’ medical bills, any lost wages, and additional fees, even if the employee is at fault in the car accident.
2. Respondeat Superior
Respondeat superior places the responsibility for any work-related actions of employees with the employer. This doctrine will require the employer to pay for property damage and injuries caused by an individual that drives a company vehicle.
The Compensatory Damages of Work-Related Car Accidents
The majority of the compensation that you will receive includes reimbursement for pain and suffering, lost wages, medical bills, and other out of pocket costs.
Similarly, with workers’ compensation, the employee is protected from paying any damages, as well as any legal fees that may be incurred.
If you have been injured following an accident, you are likely to qualify for compensation as well. With workers’ compensation, employees face no fault. Even if the employee is the responsible party, they will be able to receive their benefits. However, in the case of an employee driving under the influence or in the process of committing a crime will not be awarded benefits.
Filing a Workers’ Compensation Claim or Civil Claim
With a workers’ compensation claim, you will only receive compensation for lost wages and medical bills. In order to receive payment for mental or physical pain, as well as compensation to repair your vehicle, you will need to file a personal injury civil claim.
Additionally, when it comes to fault, with civil claims, in order to receive any compensation, you must prove that the other party is at fault. If you caused the crash and are found at fault, a personal injury claim will hurt rather than help you. With workers’ compensation, you may be at fault and still be able to collect your benefits.
Collecting Workers’ Compensation
In order to collect workers’ compensation, you need to be able to prove the following:
1. You were injured.
2. Your injury occurred on the job.
The Statute of Limitations for Workers’ Compensation
With a personal injury civil claim, you can wait between one and five years to file a civil lawsuit. With workers’ compensation, however, the statute of limitations are significantly shorter.
If you are injured on the job and hope to claim workers’ compensation, you should notify the employer as soon as possible. Typically, within the first 24 hours. If you do not report the injury during this time period, your employer may be able to defend against any workers’ compensation claim you have.
If you have been involved in a work-related accident, don’t hesitate to contact an experienced attorney to help you understand how to receive your workers’ compensation benefits. By acting fast, you’ll be able to make sure you get the compensation that you are legally owed.