Is Your Injury or Illness Work-related?

Not all injuries that occur at work can be covered by workers’ compensation. Although, the majority of injuries are, there are still some exceptions that aren’t covered. Chances are if you are doing work for the benefit of the employer and you get hurt or sick on the job, your injury or illness is most likely work-related and you can receive benefits as long as you meet the eligibility requirements.

Often, injuries or illnesses that occur on lunch breaks or while traveling to and from work are not covered under workers’ compensation. For example. If an employee was walking to the local deli to pick up lunch and tripped over the sidewalk resulting in a sprained ankle, he/she could not be eligible to receive workers comp.  If an employee sprained an ankle in a company cafeteria, then the injury might be covered by workers comp.

Lots of companies have company events, whether it be a bowling league, softball league or a company picnic; injuries can still occur. If the employee is required to attend the event, then chances are that the injury will be covered by workers comp. If it’s not a requirement for the employee to attend, then it’s a good idea to have them sign a waiver which clearly explains that the employee is participating in this event voluntarily and any injury that may occur is not covered by workers’ compensation.

Work place misconduct is a large reason to why workers get hurt in the first place. If a worker is breaking a workplace safety rule or was doing something prohibited by the employer, then the Work Comp carrier may be able to reduce the employee’s benefits. This is due to the violation or the company’s policy.  Injuries suffered by a worker while committing a crime is absolutely not covered by workers compensation.

If a worker is injured outside of the workplace they are ineligible for workers comp. Injuries or illnesses have to be directly related to their employment to be considered for coverage under workers comp.